Looking for the best snowboard bindings? Then you’re in the right place! The Whitelines Test Team has been putting the 2018/19 models through their paces throughout last winter – cranking buckles, laying down carves and tweaking grabs to bring you this list of the finest binders on the market.
All the leading snowboard binding brands are represented, including Burton, Salomon, Union and K2. Take your time doing your research, however, and don’t just choose a pair because you like how they look. Bindings are the crucial interface between you and your board and will play a big role in both how comfortable your set-up feels and performs.
“Bindings are the crucial interface between you and your board and will play a big role in both how comfortable your set-up feels and performs”
As with your snowboard and boots, it’s important that you select a model that’s suitable for your ability and intended use. It’s no good slapping Travis Rice’s signature bindings on your board, for instance, if you’re more likely to be hitting the baby runs than powdery steeps. The following factors should be taken into consideration:
This is determined by both the highback and baseplate. Softer bindings are more forgiving (so good for beginners) and easier to manipulate on jumps and rails; stiffer bindings (which often include carbon) offer greater support and more instant response – ideal for hard charging on piste and pow, or powerful kicker riders.
It goes without saying that you need a good fit between boot and binding. If you can, try them in store. You don’t necessarily need the same brand for both (though it can sometimes help) but be sure to choose the right size and adjust the toe ramps, straps etc. The buckles should connect easily across the top of your foot whilst cranking tight enough, and the whole package should feel snug with no awkward gaps.
“The Whitelines Test Team has been putting the 2018/19 models through their paces throughout last winter – cranking buckles, laying down carves and tweaking grabs to bring you this list of the finest binders on the market”
If the flex and fit are correct then you’re most of the way there. Now you can consider the merits of any additional features like cushioned footbeds, plush padding, hardwearing buckles or lightweight materials.
It’s an unfortunate fact of life that binding parts do sometimes break, especially if you ride aggressively and/or spend the whole season in the mountains. After all, they’ve got more parts to them than anything else in your kit. It can pay to choose a brand with a solid network of dealers so you’re not left wandering resort on a forlorn quest for an obscure toe ratchet.
One more note before you dive in – following its limited release last winter, Burton’s Step On binding is back for a second season. While traditional straps still dominate the market, reviews of this radical new system continue to be positive, so if you value speed and convenience then finally you have a serious alternative to rear-entry cable options like Flow or the K2 Cinch.
Scroll down to view all the best snowboard bindings, or skip to a particular brand using the links below