Gnu Asym (read asymmetrical) snowboard sidecut technology has been around for several years so it’s not exactly brand new. And if you go all the way back to the eighties you can find asym tech on various boards coming out of the Elan factory in Austria. Those boards employed a heel-side sidecut that was setback further than the toe-side sidecut. Today’s asym technology has a much different design though it’s meant to achieve similar results. The goal of asym tech is to balance the discrepancies in the human anatomy that make turning and popping off your toe-side edge easier than your heel-side.
above the Gnu Riders Choice, Forrest Bailey Strange Trip, and Carbon Credit
According to Gnu, one aspect of the asym concept is predicated on the idea that feet, like hands, have dual purposes. Toes can spread out over a wide area. They are also flexible and nimble. This allows them to apply pressure to specific points on a surface thereby giving them a greater degree of control over the snowboard. Heels, on the other hand, are blunt and focused on a much smaller area. They carry the bulk of the body’s weight and directly transfer it’s full force downward through the hips, knees and ankles. But heels are unable to effectively regulate that force or apply it over a large area without picking themselves up moving to another spot. The bottom line is that a snowboarder is naturally more adept and skillful on his/her toe-side edge than the heel-side.
In light of this, Gnu developed asym tech which keeps the toe-side edge of the snowboard as is, but gives the heel-side edge a tighter sidecut. Tighter, meaning a smaller radius, which results in a slightly deeper rout into the board on the heel-side.
As a result, this deeper heel-side sidecut makes up for our anatomical predisposition to turning and popping off your toe-side edge more easily than your heel-side. Gnu also places softer, flexier wood cores on the heel-side edge of their asym boards. This allows for the lower angle of force that is applied in heel-side turns and makes it easier to set the rail on edge and power through the turn without encountering side slippage. The longer, shallower sidecut coupled with harder wood cores on the toe-side edge provides greater stability and added power that a rider needs to compensate for the lack of downward force inherent in the forward area of the foot.
Asym tech is also great for park riding as it provides the extra heel-side support and responsiveness that the forward lean on your bindings’ highbacks accomplish. You can zero out your highbacks for ultimate comfortable and tweakability (freedom of movement) and still get the response and edge control you need for posting up onto features.
At Neverbored we carry three super fun and awesome Gnu snowboards that have the asym tech. The all-mountain freestyle Gnu Riders Choice; the insanely fun Park Pickle (name says it all); and pro-rider Forrest Bailey’s signature Park Pickle Strange Trip.
All three of these boards have the latest asym tech along with the standard magne-traction for edge hold and banana rocker for a loose, skatey feel and float in powder.