Jeremy Grendhal, Tahoe backcountry. Photo: E-Stone

Long before text messaging became youth culture's main form of correspondence, snowboarders were ahead of the curve. From what trick was done to how it was landed and where on the mountain it went down, abbreviations and acronyms have always been universal vernacular in the snowboard world. This month's installment of Sicktionary showcases some of the more popular jargon that one might hear on-hill. We hope you enjoy the common contractions this column features, and have a hearty LOL chuckle while you're at it.
-Pat Bridges & T. Bird

FS: An acronym for the word "Frontside," referring to the direction that one is spinning.

BS: "BS" is an abbreviation of the word "Backside," in which a rider would be explaining that they spun backside off a jump, in the pipe, etc. If, however, said shred's boardin' ability wasn't up to par with their claim and nobody was around to witness it, one could most definitely call BS on that lying SOB.

NBD: "Never Been Done." Many think that it pertains to the phrase "No Big Deal," but there have been too many times in which we've heard some painted-on-panted, dreamcatcher-dangling, "over it" trust fund sno-bro gypster audibly and sarcastically announce it in the liftline after explaining their sub-par trick simply for attention. So we decided to change it. Also, we will punch anyone in the balls if we hear them do what was previously mentioned. No big deal.

FT: Means "First Try," in reference to one landing a trick upon their initial attempt. In non-snowboard related terms, "FT" is a short form attached to a number to denote the measurement "feet" in relation to the distance from one point to another. "That jump was around 60 ft, and I got my trick FT." The current usage has caused many of today's biggest pros to develop a full-blown FT fetish.

UV: Short for ultraviolet, UV refers to light which has a wavelength shorter than other, more visible varieties. Goggles and sunglasses protect wearers from ultraviolet rays. Unfortunately, these items do very little to protect wearers against ultra-violence.

EVA: Ethylene vinyl acetate is the scientific name for foam rubber. It can be found in all manner of snowboarding equipment, from boot bladders to binding straps to knock-off jester hats to padding on lift towers.

OB: "OB" is short for out of bounds, which is a phrase that denotes the outer reaches of a ski resort's patrolled area.

SW: The abbreviation for switch, which is itself the shortened version of switch stance. Tricks adorned with "SW" are being done backwards (the opposite of the rider's natural stance), meaning regular footers doing something goofy and goofy footers doing something regular. For example, in 1991 Chuck D took Professor Griff and the rest of Public Enemy, including the S1Ws, snowboarding. Flava Flav's SW 900s were no joke. This was the actual founding of the X Games.

T-Bar: A two-person surface lift that is often found on the smallest Midwestern peaks as well as the highest glaciers in the world. With the closing of Whistler's Boot Pub in 2006, the last TT-Bar at a North American ski area was no more.

SBX: The reason why this offshoot of snowboarding isn't called by its true identity is that Peak Productions trademarked the name Boardercross® in the early nineties. In other words, the Olympics have Snowboard Cross, the X Games have Snowboarder X, and Peak Productions doesn't have shit. This means that SBX is what you call anything that involves snowboarders pretending to be skiers pretending to be supercrossers. (It would still be amazing if Palmer makes the 2010 Olympic Snowboard Cross team.)

Scotty Lago, Cerro Catedral, Argentina. Photo: Aaron Dodds

This content was originally published in the November 2009 issue.


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