Snowboarding was actually developed back in the 1960's. It started as a crude sport with homemade equipment. It wasn't very well known and there weren't equipment manufacturers for the sport like there is today. Even though it is actually hard to actually determine who really invented the sport, or even the first snowboard, some hints of its origin can be tracked all the way back to the 1920s.
Way back then, it was basically just putting a piece of plywood in the snow to use as a homemade sled mechanism, just for fun. Eventually, other similar devices were developed by several different people just out of necessity to provide their children with fun toys to entertain themselves with. One such father was Sherman Poppen who developed the Snurfer (named by his wife) for his daughter. Several people loved the idea of the Snurfer and Poppen began to sell them.Competitions were developed which in time evolved into a sport, but snowboarding was yet to come. One of the well known Snurfers was Jake Burton.
Burton wanted to surf but his parents wouldn't buy him a board. He really loved the Snurfer and began to participate in the competitions where he became well known in the newly created sport. Later, after Burton graduated from college, he began production on his own line of snowboards. This line was the first to incorporate the use of ski technology and made Burton's boards more maneuverable than the Snurfer. He really caught the attention of onlookers when he won the Snurfer competition with his own snowboard creation. He blew away the competition with the maneuverability of his creation and the skills that it allowed him to develop. Today, Burton's boards are the most popular brand of snowboards making him one of the pioneers of the sport.
Dimitrije Milovich was another pioneer of the sport of snowboarding.He too developed his own brand of board back during the time Burton was still riding the Snurfer. Milovich is credited with helping to raise the profile of snowboarding because he helped to get articles about the sport of snowboarding published in magazines such as Newsweek, Playboy and others.
In the 1980's, a couple of different boarding magazines hit the newsstands. This helped to make the sport more recognizable. Although many followers began to participate in the sport it did not increase to the popularity of other sports until snowboarding debuted as an official sport at the Olympic Winter Games in Japan in the late 90's. After this, the sport commanded a following of seven million participants in the United States alone. Although it was once considered to be a sport of radical, rebellious young men, snowboarding has now become popular with both men and women. It is not gender specific anymore. Considered an extreme sport, it requires dedication, skill and determination, and can be very dangerous.
Snowboarding has gone far from its humble beginnings with equipment made in shop classes and garages to being one of the most popular winter sports across the globe.