Snowboard Goofy vs Regular: How to Tell

Every snowboarder will ride with either their left foot forward or their right foot forward. The right foot in front is known as goofy, and the left foot in front is called regular. But how do you tell which one you are if you don’t know? Keep reading, my friend. 

I’ve been working as a certified snowboarding instructor for the last ten years. I’ve helped many people discover which foot forward is their most natural way to ride.

In this post, I’ll help you learn how to figure out whether you snowboard regular or goofy. Luckily, it is pretty easy to figure out, and there are a few standard methods to getting it done in seconds. 

Let’s jump in.

Initial Considerations

Nearly every single rider will have a foot that they naturally lead with. And the majority of people are regular-footed, which means they ride with their left foot up front. Some people don’t have a dominant leg and can ride in either direction, basically the same. 

Not having a strong foot is extremely rare, but if you happen to fall into that camp, you have the potential to become a very skilled snowboarder. It’s an obvious advantage to be able to ride in either direction at an equal level. 

Picking your snowboard stance will help you dial in your setup. It may not seem like that big of a deal when you are first learning, but as you get more skills, you will want to tweak your binding angles or the shape of your board. 

How to Tell Whether You Are Regular or Goofy

There are a few different ways to determine which one of your feet should be your lead foot. Keep in mind that the methods for figuring this out below are not set in stone. Some people ride with the opposite foot forward than what these ‘tests’ indicate. 

The most basic advice for figuring this out is to use whichever foot is the most natural and comfortable. You don’t need to think about it too much, just go with the flow and see which foot you place up front. 

1. Pushing Method

This is the method my friends and I used to use as kids to determine if we were regular or goofy. It’s easy and fun, plus who doesn’t like some good-natured shoving from time to time? You’ll need one person to help you figure this method out. 

  • Stand with your feet close together and equally balanced. 
  • Close your eyes.
  • Your friend will push you from behind (make sure to tell them to push you gently).
  • The foot you step forward with first should be your back foot, OR the foot that stays in place should be your front foot. 

2. Kicking Method

Another common way to figure out whether you are regular or goofy footed is to kick a ball. A soccer ball is standard, but you could kick any sort of ball or any object. Just make sure you don’t kick something hard and injure your foot. 

  • Place the ball in front of you or walk up to it.
  • Kick the ball. 
  • The foot you kick the ball with should be your back foot, OR the foot that stays planted should be your front foot. 

3. Stairs Method

You can also take the easy approach and simply walk up a few stairs to figure out your snowboard stance. This doesn’t technically need to be completed on stairs. You could just walk. But I think it’s more accurate when done on stairs. 

  • Stand with both feet in front of a set of stairs. 
  • Step up onto the first stair. 
  • The foot you stepped up onto the stair first should be your back foot, OR the foot you stepped up with second should be your front foot. 

4. The Sliding Method

My favorite method and the one that I think ends up being the most accurate is the sliding method. This one involves having the right conditions of either a slippery floor with socks or an icy ground that you can slide across. 

  • Put socks or shoes on so you can slide across the surface of your choosing. Socks are good for an indoor surface like a wood floor. Shoes are good for an icy outdoor surface. 
  • Get a bit of a running start.
  • Slide across the surface. 
  • Whichever foot you lead with will be your lead foot. 
  • Try it a few times if you want or need to. 

Why These Methods Aren’t Always Reliable

As I mentioned earlier, these methods can help you figure out if you are regular or goofy footed most of the time. They don’t work all of the time. That’s because everyone is slightly different, and just because they kick a ball with one foot doesn’t mean that will directly translate. 

Some people can also be naturally ambidextrous with their feet. This is similar to a person who might write with their left hand but throw a ball with their right. Humans are humans, and there isn’t also a straight-up explanation for everything we do! 

FAQs

Here are a few quick answers to some common questions relating to telling whether you are goofy or regular footed. 

How to know if your snowboard is regular or goofy?

You can usually tell which way a snowboard is set up by which way the bindings point. If the front binding points to the left, it’s set up for regular. If it points to the right, it’s set up for goofy. Some boards have a switch or neutral stance, which can make it hard to tell. 

How do I know my snowboard stance?

The most basic answer to this is whichever way feels most comfortable for you. You can also try a few other methods like kicking a soccer ball or taking a step forward. Whichever foot stays planted will most likely be your lead foot. 

Which way is regular and goofy?

Regular is having your left foot up front and your right foot in the back. Goofy is just the opposite, with your right foot up front and your left foot in the back. Riding with your unnatural foot forward is called riding switch. 

What percentage of snowboarders are goofy?

Various studies have been done to determine this, and the general answer is that about 30-40% of snowboarders are goofy. The samples weren’t huge, so I wouldn’t take these as the absolute truth.  

Final Thoughts

After going through the methods mentioned above, you should now be able to tell if you are goofy or regular footed. Keep in mind that the best way to know for sure is to get on a board and see which foot forward feels more natural. These tests are not always exact. 

About Lorraine
I'm a certified snowboard instructor. My first experience with snowboarding occurred at an indoor resort. One run had me hooked, and it has turned into a lifelong passion ever since then. I'm here to share with you some of the tips and advice I have learned along the way.

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