What’s the definition of a “pro” in snowboarding?


In most sports there’s a definite line between pro and amateur decided by whether you earn a paycheck or not. In snowboarding, we tend to throw the word around without any real concrete definition. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines it as “one who makes a living as an athlete.” I guess that just leaves the wiggle room for defining exactly what “a living” is. -A.F.

What’s the definition of a “pro” in snowboarding?

Kurt Wastell
Age: 30
Sponsors: Billabong, Vans, Spy, Bluebird Wax, Lifelink, Kicker, Vestal, Blindside Co, Essa, All Sport Dynamic, Asterix
“A pro in snowboarding is a person who is innovative for the sport, has been around to experience the industry and all the changes that go on, and has the ability to stick around more than a couple seasons and build a name for his or herself.”

Scotty Lago
Age: 18
Sponsors: Flow, Billabong, Smith, Saucony, Bern, Grenade, Neff
“That’s a good question because I get that from a lot of people, and I’m like, ‘Err I don’t really know.’ I guess the real definition of a pro is when you start getting paid to shred. But really it should be when you actually start making money aside from all the expenses like planes, hotels, food, and all of that good stuff. In that case, I just turned pro, haha! I went on when one of the magazines called me a pro.”

Erik Christensen
Age: 24
Sponsors: Nitro, Billabong, Spy, Technine, DaKine,
“To me it means that you make enough money to quit your job and just snowboard. You also have to be getting pushed by your sponsors like getting ads and listed on the pro team. I know a lot of ams are really good and I honestly look at them as pros, too-especially if they have a good video part and get paid. Professional means that you get paid and do it for a living. Peace!”