While you can get away with wearing any type of pants while snowboarding getting snowboarding pants is definitely a good investment if you are trying to ‘up your game’ and need to spend more time on the hills practicing. Melting snow kicked up from the board, moisture in the air and your own body’s reaction to exercise can mean having to cut sessions on the board short as your core temperature drops. Not only can the wrong type of clothing let you get cold if the cut of the pants or jacket is too constrictive it can throw of your coordination. Snowboarding pants need to be made of breathable material, not be too constrictive, and be waterproof.
This might sound like a tall order, but there are pants that will fit the bill. On the label of snowboarding pants, there is a number for the garments waterproofing rating. 10,000 mm is alright, but if you can find something higher than 30,000mm that has all the other qualities you need then even better. This waterproofing ranking designates those with the highest ranking as the best at keeping you warm and dry.
Being warm and dry through is more than just keeping out the snow and ice. When you are moving on the snowboard you will sweat, and you need a garment with fabric that can whisk this away before you start losing warmth. Breath-ability is also shown as rank on the label and it too goes up to show how much moisture can pass through the material. Look for the highest number possible here as well. The warmer and dryer you can keep your body the more energy you will have to practice longer. This is the reason gear is so crucial. It is very important for any of your snowboarding gear to be something you can depend on to function as it should.
The next thing to consider is the fit. When you try them on can you move freely in them or do you feel any pulls this way or that? If you walk in them do they bunch up? Try moving around the shop or store or even just take big steps around the fitting room area to see if the pants move well with you. You cannot stop to correct troublesome pants on the hill so make sure they fit well before you leave with them.
The next thing to look for is actually fun. Pockets are important for snowboarding not just as decoration, but because you need a place to carry items you will need with you. This is why many brands of snowboarding pants have lots and lots of pockets. After all you cannot take a backpack snowboarding with you as this would throw off your balance, and you certainly do not want to have to have some sort of sling getting tangled around your arms or legs that is full of keys, lift tickets, lip balm or water bottles when you can have pockets to keep everything organized in as you snowboard.