Snowboarding in Popular Culture
Cool boarders is a video game for the Playstation which was brought out in 1996, when the sport was still relatively young and still emerging onto the sports scene. This game alone massively contributed to the profile of the sport, many people will have virtually snowboarded before they even strapped a board onto their own feet.
However, there was a great deal of controversy when the game first came out as the advert made for the game used a similarity between drugs and fresh un-compacted snow or powder, and then used the word in a different context, ie. powder drugs. This image was aimed at the rebel reputation which the sport had acquired, but advocators of the sport at a professional level were dismayed with how snowboarding was being represented. The situation was heightened when Ross Rebagliati, who won the first snowboarding gold medal in the Olympic Games, tested positive for cannabis use. He denied the accusations, saying that his results were due to passive smoking, which was proved to be impossible. He later admitted to the charges, which caused damage to the professional acceptance of snowboarding but did not suffer a blow to his career, he now owns the Rebagliati Alpine Snowboard Training Academy (RASTA)
Now all professional snowboarders who wish to compete are tested for drugs, and the ISA maintains a zero drugs policy throughout the sport.
As with skating and surfing, snowboarding films are starting to become popular with the participants of the sport. These films are usually released in Autumn, in preparation for the snowboarding season in the Northern Hemisphere. There are specific snowboarding production companies which make these films, which are usually shots of professional snowboarders or of competitions.
Examples of films
- Follow Me Around – This is a documentary which focuses on the rise of snowboarding, with the main mission of the film being to find where the best snowboarding venues in the world are. There are many stunts and tricks; this is an action packed film featuring some of the best snowboarders in the world.
- Ro Sham Bo – This film features the best female snowboarders in the world. It follows them around the world to different competitions, and gives a great insight into how women practice the sport.
- Brainstorm – This film is the one that all other snowboarding films are measured by. It features incredible landscapes, and snowboarding tricks and techniques from the start studied cast.