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Snowboards have been around since the late 70's. For a run down on the history, have a look at [1]. Snowboard pioneers include people like Jake Burton, Tom Sims and Jack Barfoot, whose names you will still see as brands of board companies.

Snowboards today have as wide a range of models as skis do. You can get them for freeriding, big lines, park and pipe, carving (racing) at the high end, and in beginner and intermediate models. The difference between them is normally tortional rigidity, flex patterns and sidecut.

Bindings are attached through screws, which are either placed in two parallel strips (called 4x4 pattern) or a trianglar/diamond pattern (used just about exclsuively by Burton). Naturally, the bindings (or base plates of the bindings) need to match the hole pattern.

Boots are generally soft boots, except for race/carving boards which have plastic boots. There are many different styles of soft boots, oriented towards pipe/park and freeride. The pipe park boots tend to have softer flex and lower cut to allow more flexibility on takeoff and landing. Boots and either be single (where only the outside of the boot is done up) or double laced (where the outside and the inner of the boot are done up). There are various methods of securing the boot, ranging from straps to laces to chord and dial systems.

Bindings normally come with 2 sets of straps attached to a base with a high/back. The high back allows application of weight to the heel side edge. The starps are non releaseable and generally use a ratchet system to secure the boot to the binding. There also also other binding systems like clicker (which you can step into the binding though a cleat in the bottom of the boot) and flow (where the hjighback pulls down to allow the boot to slide in.