No one likes to slam. We all know that feeling of coccyx-numbing, will-I-ever-be-able-to-peel-myself-off-the-ground pain when you catch an edge or overshoot a kicker. Like sitting down too hard on a seatbelt plug or giving birth. OK, not quite like giving birth, but you catch my drift.
So when a slam video pops up online, why do we have this strange compulsion to watch it? We know what’s going to happen, but you can’t help but peek through your fingers in horror. Car crash TV at its very finest.
We’ve compiled the very worst snowboard slams in history, in honour of all those brave men and women who ride hard and bail even harder. We feel your pain dudes.
1) Dropping 40ft Onto The Flat
Halfpipes are intimidating at the best of times, let alone when you bail as epically as this guy did.
We know speed is your friend when it comes to dropping in, but too much speed means you’ll practically touch the moon before overshooting the landing and coming down with a bone-crunching thud on the flat.
Like this guy.
2) Halldor Helgason Out Cold At The X Games 2013
You might remember the 2013 X Games did not end too well for Halldor Helgason. He was going for a quad backflip (so he claims) in the Big Air comp.
However, he royally screws up the landing and smashes face first into the ice, knocking himself out cold.
Luckily, the fearless Icelandic didn’t suffer any lasting injuries. In fact, he thought the whole thing was “pretty cool”. Legend.
3) Longest Ragdoll In History?
This is a classic fail from Ralph Backstrom during Teton Gravity Research filming in Alaska.
The backcountry boss launches himself into the air waay too fast before landing arse-first in the pow. And so begins the longest rag doll in history.
There’s a point when you think he’s going to make it to his feet again…. but, oh no, wait he’s tumbling down once more…
4) What Happens When You Don’t Make The Gap
Hitting a kicker requires speed. However, speed but no pop makes for a very sticky ending.
This fella falls victim to what can only be described as the frying pan effect. You know, when cartoon characters take an almighty frying pan to the face. That – but in real life.
Damn, it’s gotta hurt.
5) That Donkey Dick Dicked Me
Rails are arguably every rider’s arch nemesis. Impressive if you nail one, but there’s always the possibility that it’ll nut you in the balls.
Quite literally in the case of Joey Odom here, who takes on this kink rail before front-flipping onto the donkey dick at the end. Man, that looks seriously painful.
6) Jake Blauvelt Slams Hard
It’s good to know that even the lords of the backcountry fail every now and then. Just check out this clip from Jake Blauvelt in Forum Or Against ‘Em.
The mellow lad from Vermont gets so much air before he misjudges the landing and eats some serious shit.
7) Snowboarder Takes Out Photographer
Now this one is just plain funny. Maybe not for the photographer involved.
A snowboarder flies off a kicker, hurtles through the air and ends up taking out a whole group of photographers after he misjudges the landing unbelievably badly.
Occupational hazard of having a damn cool job, eh?
8) Bungee Gone Wrong
Girls slam just as hard as male riders do. That’s a fact. Just take Desiree Melancon for example.
She bails so hard after this failed bungee attempt and is completely owned by the rail. Skip to 0.48 to see the winceworthy crash.
The funniest part comes at the end when Desiree throws a hissy fit because (understandably) no one is that keen to take on the rail after she nearly breaks her collarbone…
9) Rails Are Nasty…
Losing your footing on a rail is bad enough, but imagine taking the full impact on your neck. Nitro rider Georg Obermeissner does exactly that in this clip.
The first few seconds are pretty average stuff. Not that gnarly I hear you cry? Fast-forward to 0.17 to catch the full throat-catching, whiplash-inducing slam.
10) Fredrik Perry Scrapes Off Half His Back
If you’re of a nervous disposition, then a) why are you watching these?! and b) look away now. This one nearly had us heaving.
RK1 rider Fredrik Perry is casually bossing some rails when he catches his back on the end of one and ends up with a very nasty injury, leaving him face down in the snow with half of his back flesh wedged inside the rail….
Skip 7.15 to watch it unfold, if your stomach can handle it.
11) Somewhere Over The Rainbow
This couldn’t really have gone worse for this unlucky park rider. He hoons it towards the rainbow with Usain Bolt-style speed and immediately loses control on take off.
You know it’s not going to end well when he flies through the air butt first, and crash lands with a sickening thud. How he is still conscious, I will never know.
12) Freerider Just Keeps Rolling…
If you’ve ever watched the Freeride World Tour, you’ll know exactly how gnarly the courses are. Some might call them rock-strewn fields from hell.
Consider falling down one. Not pleasant, right? This poor bloke has unfortunately lost his footing in one such area and tumbled down to a very nearly nasty end.
13) Kicker Overshoot Of The Year
Go big or go home? This man definitely went big – too big you might say – and the consequences look like they will result in one ambulance trip with a very hefty hospital bill at the end of it.
Just listen to the sound of that crack as he hits the ground! My absolute lack of medical knowledge tells me that’s one coccyx well and truly busted.
14) One Lacerated Liver Later
When you bust open your liver and miss your main artery by 5mm, you know you slammed hard.
This anonymous rider was going for a FS 270 on an 18-step handrail, missed and the consequences were brutal.
15) Face First
Oooof Hana Beaman takes a beating here. We’ve already seen a few totally out of control kicker overshoots, but landing one face first has got to be crazy painful.
The snap of the head paired with the flailing arms and cartoon music works makes it a little bit funny, but also winceworthy to watch.
16) Snowboarding On Rocks Is A Bad Idea
Legend Nick Perata didn’t make a name for himself by sticking to the piste. The pioneering jibber was known for his crazy antics in the early ’90s alongside snowboarding’s bad boy Shawn Farmer.
This clip from the 1990 film Totally Board. The idea? Ride over the dirt and jump the rocks. It looks like Nick didn’t quite make it…
17) Darrah Reid-Mclean Hit By A Car
Is this the most unlucky slam ever? Darrah Reid-Mclean takes on a rail and skids into the road. Next thing you know, she’s under a car screaming in pain.
Does the driver get out and check if she’s alright? Nope! However, it probably wasn’t the best idea to land in a road and not have someone on automobile watch…
18) 21 Stitches And Concussion
What starts as a casual day in the park ends with Joey Rupp catching an edge and front-flipping onto his head. Cue blood everywhere.
The last thing you want is some dude with a camera yelling “Holy shit! Holy shit!” on repeat while you’re crawling on the floor in agony. So what happened to the unfortunate Joey? 21 stitches and concussion. Ouch.
19) Kicker Carnage
Dave Fortin went down in slam history after he crashed out so badly at the Grenade Games 5 Slopestyle contest. Think totally out-of-control, arm waving panic before slamming epically on the knuckle.
Witnesses say the video doesn’t quite capture how crazy this bail was. Miraculously, he only ended up with a broken thumb and a few bruises!
20) Jeremy Jones Narrowly Misses Avalanche Catastrophe
Catching an edge is painful. However, if you ride as hard as Jeremy Jones, you’re going to suffer a lot more than just a sore butt.
Just check out this clip from TGR’s film Anomaly – ragdoll after ragdoll in the gnarliest of terrains. Skip to 1.06 to see Jeremy ride out a massive avalanche!