Taking It In The Rear

The beauty about options is that there’s always something for everyone. You don’t like Burton you have Ride, you’re not down with Boa there’s Speed Zone, and for those that thought everything was sicker with Clicker we have rear entry bindings. While some might not be down with taking it from the rear others love sliding it in from behind. Here’s a break down of the options that are out there on the market for everyone.

Flow was the originator of the popularity of these bindings. Starting all the way back in 1992 by some guys with german names that come from a wind surfing background. Anyways the big things that set Flow apart from others is what they call their power triangle. This is the triangle that is formed from the cable that runs from the base of the binding to the highback. If you know anything about design evidently triangles are the strongest form of design or some shit. Anyways basic concept is highback folds down foot slides in up goes highback and you’re in. They offer a single strap over the foot called a Power Strap that does have micro ratchets for on the fly adjustments. If needed these micro ratchets can allow you to use the binding as a front entry. Set up takes a bit longer to dial in these bindings but like anything that gives you convenience it’s worth it to take the time to dial these in 100%.

K2 has finally started living down the atrocity that was Clicker bindings, but they haven’t forgotten those that need an alternate entering binding. Thus they invented their Cinch technology. Utilizing a three part chassis consisting of the base, sides, and highback which works as a levered hinge. When the highback if slipped down the sides raise which lifts the heel strap up and opens the binding for a smoother slide into the backdoor. Setting these up is pretty damn conventional and the straps can be used fully as a front entry binding.

APO Snowboards formerly A Snowboards has their Dual Entry System. Similar concept of taking it in the rear but this one uses a side hinge on their thinner cable. Slide the foot in pull up on the hoop on the back of the highback and the hinges lock you in. Once again you have dual entry so you can double team this bitch from the front and the back depending on what kind of slope/terrain you’re in. Setup seems similar to the K2’s with more playing with the straps/forward lean than actually dialing in every possible aspect.

Gnu’s binding line has Fastec Technology which is used by other companies such as Volkl Snowboards. Yep another shove it in the rear and pull up on the lever binding. Toe cap option along with the ski lift release so you’re not snug in there when chilling going up to the top of the hill. Over all a pretty meat and potato’s system that only gives you one option for getting in and out.

So there it is a break down of the main options for taking it in the rear. Is one better than the other? Not necessarily but there are different strokes for different folks. So hey like the picture at the top says give the backdoor a try and who knows you might even get your girlfriend to like it.

18 Comments

  1. edshred says:

    step ins are for lazy ass gapers

  2. nvansluy says:

    Has anyone heard anything on the reliability of these rear-entry bindings? I’ve tried Flows and they are reliable, but feel very different than two-strap bindings. I’d be interested in trying the Cinch or Fastec, but I understand they break down more readily than regular bindings (moving parts freezing up or breaking).

  3. Benz says:

    They look convenient, but i watched someone struggle to close flow bindings because they couldn’t get all the snow out of the way. Was on the east coast so by snow i mean chunks of ice getting in the way.

  4. Elenchus says:

    I’m always interested in what others think of these type of bindings.

    A couple years ago I bought some rear entry bindings because I thought I’d be able to strap in on the lift. I had seen kids do it and thought why the hell not. I researched the K2 and Flow reviews to come up with what I thought was the best & most reliable option. I ended up picking up a pair of Flow.

    I really wanted to like them, and tried riding them several times and on different boards with different settings, but they always felt really weird and I never really figured out exactly what it was I didn’t like. Maybe too restricted in my movements, gripped the top of my boot too tight and felt stiff. And I like stiff bindings. I was just uncomfortable in them. Needless to say I didn’t keep them.

    This year I’ve picked up a pair of Ride Contrabands. (not rear entry – but quick entry) These are bindings that I think look gimicky and I figured would come and go with quickness. However, 9/10 reviews of these things are positive so I figured I’d try them.

  5. e says:

    I saw a guy who couldn’t get into his 2 strap binding cause he couldn’t get all the snow out. I think a binding is a 3 step thing, is it comfortable, how it rides & convience, the last part depends on the user. Same deal with boots.

    Cinch, I didn’t like how the binding rode(too soft of a hiback), heavier than hell, was comfortable, but convience was lacking since the straps would ratchet down or move before you got in. I still have never seen somebody use a cinch by lowering the hiback.

    The fastec binding, what GNU & 16 other companies use has come a long ways as far as look, I only rode a the cheapest version from a couple of years ago. You had to take apart the whole binding just to adjust it, including forward lean, binding was painful, rode like shit & you still have to adjust the cap strap to get in & click the ankle lever down. So, I would just buy a 2 strap since i have to do the same stuff anyways.

    Flow, which I have, I like, but I’m use to them. My first time took me a couple of runs to get use to since I tried to crank them down like a 2 strap….which you don’t do & I like that it’s just one step, usually I just kick my foot in just after getting off the lift. My super old ones, I didn’t like the hiback, but now they have hibacks that are way more comfy & either stiffer or torsionally softer. This is the only binding that actually rides different, the others ride like 2 straps. Maybe it’s me, but I feel more in control in rough terrain.

    Apo, has been around for 7 years I think, it rode ok, still had to adjust the cap strap everytime I got in, but the rest worked fine. Problem is I don’t know where you can get them in the states & am not a big fan of hinges.

    Pretty much all these bindings have ratchets or something that you can just lift up to get in normally or to clear snow out or if your on a steep slope.

  6. J says:

    My first board had flows on it and for a beginner, it was hard to get my balance right while wearing them. I struggled to use them for almost a full season before I realized that because my legs are long, they are hard for me to reach the highback when its open. I tried a two strap binding and although they were from an old rental board, I liked them better, it was easier to get into them and I could do it easily standing up. I will probably be looking at a new setup this year if I progress and I doubt that I will look at rear entry bindings.

  7. RideNH says:

    I picked up the K2 Cinch last season and rode them hard all season. Its true they are a little on the heavy side, but I am 6’2″ and 220 lbs, so it wasnt a huge deal for me. I have never had problems binding in, and i ride on the east almost all of the time. I think they are a great bingind, I can strap in right on the chair and start riding the summit right away. i would recommend these to anyone.

  8. Joe Smith says:

    Each foot in snowboarding performs different roles. Front foot stays in mostly, rear foot is in and out all day for getting around/riding lift. Ski paradigm of 2 exact same bindings should be out the window by now. Ideal situation is to have a more fixed, light-weight binding up front (ie. Union Forces) and a easy in and out in the back (like Flow NTX etc.).

    I could see a great collaboration between manufacturers to market this idea.

  9. Cam says:

    Older pre NXT era and lower end Flows pretty much suck. I have NXTs on all my boards and I’ve never had any problems. I’m not a pro rider (as with 99.9% of other riders) but I am what’s considered an aggressive advanced/expert rider that gets in plenty of days. I’m also 6’1″ and 215 lbs which puts a lot of stress on any setup. Flows get pretty bad press and I think I know why. All I can tell anybody about them is to read the setup instructions carefully, bring one of your own boots along when your shopping for them to see if the sole/heel of your boot isn’t going to interfere with the reclining highback operation, or be too wide for the baseplate, look them over carefully every other time up or so to see if any screws are coming loose, (as should be done with ANY bindings) and don’t buy the cheapo ones. It also helps if you ride with someone who already knows how to use them. Before getting into Flows I usually rode mostly Burton bindings and I could get strapped in and out really quick without ever any sitting down or any of that shit. My best riding buddy had Flows and he’d always get a huge head start on me down the hill and I’d never hear the end of it because he’s a really sarcastic dickhead. I got my own Flows and that’s the end of that. I also hear people say that Flows aren’t that responsive. The old ones weren’t for sure, but if you look at the newer powerstrap it’s way better than the old shit. Almost all manufacturers have high end bindings that perform well because if you think about it, they all have the same basic geometry with the same contact points and everything. Anyone who thinks subtle differences in design make a huge difference in anybody’s riding capability is a bitch to the marketing hype and a fuckin’ robot.

  10. Leo says:

    I think gear hating is just ignorant and immature. I had some kid tell his friend who said, “those bindings are sick” that “Those are Flows and they suck ass.” Of course they were talking about my 2010 NXT FSE bindings. Funny because I later saw that kid halfway down doing a half-assed tail press. I’m not the best rider, but I had to show him up in front of his friend since obviously my Flows suck so bad that it makes me a bad rider.

    Moral of the story? Ride whatever the heck makes you feel right while you shred. Flows aren’t for everybody. Neither are traditional bindings. Get over yourself and get over it. What next? Are you going to go meat gazing at your local urinal? You seem to care that much to do so.

  11. doug says:

    Ride what you got pretty much. Im sure if i had no choice i could get used to a rear entry or a stepin again.

    I cant be sure but i believe APO is Regis Roland’s company… and i dont know whether it is short for something or just the first letters of Apocalypse. Either way im sure theyve come a long way

  12. carver says:

    Gotta agree with Doug, If your any kind of rider you can ride most anything. I learned to love the old switch high back step-in bindings although I damn near thought my ankles would break from lack of support(worn out boots, the real downfall of step-in’s) Those things never stranded me with busted straps or ratchets like so many strap bindings have. Like others said the early flows felt to much like hard boots. They were just to positive for freestyle. Now I ride NXT FS they break about as much as strap bindings and Flow drank the hurton juice in terms of needless non standard repair parts but damn there easy in easy out and here in the East thats key. As for the Fast-tek, we sold ass loads last year most came back broken with a quickness.
    Hopefully they will fair better this season as Grom’s snap these up over Flow 2 to 1(jib tech syndrome we call it)

  13. Punkrock boyscout says:

    As a former instructor I loved my switch special x bindings(they were quick in and out and I didn’t spend half the lesson bent over.) When i couldn’t get a pair of those I borrowed my buddy’s nxt ats and they were alright but every time you lose a bolt or snap a cable you need a NASA engineer to fix the damn things not to mention some super specialized part that is dependent on year and model. At least with the K2s and maybe the Mervin products you can run to the rental or pro shop and grab pretty much any bolt/nut and get back on the hill without having to call mission control.

  14. […] will give you the breakdown you're probably looking for The Angry Snowboarder Blog Archive Taking It In The Rear __________________ Angry Snowboarder Because someone has to call it how they see […]

  15. Cav says:

    I have used Flows in the past and was not impressed with trying to get the foot in and out. either it is too loose and you can get your foot in/out or it is perfect for riding but you struggle to get your foot in/out.
    .
    That’s why I like the Fastc and K2 CTX. Both open the ankle strap up to allow access at the same time as the back comes down.
    .
    A lot of haters of these bindings only know the older versions or have tried them for 10 mins and gone “they siuck”, without even trying to get used to the binding. Both companies have developed their models over the years and recently Fastecs have improved dramatically. The difference beyween my 2011 Brotherhood and my 2010 Troopa’s is considerable.
    .
    Setting up the K2 is simple. Open both straps as per a normal binding. Position foot and close straps as per a normal binding. Adjust to appropriate tension. Then undo high back and slide out. You are ready to go.
    .
    Fastecs take a fraction longer, and I mean only a fraction, see video here.
    http://www.myfastec.com/videos/fastec-setup/
    http://vimeo.com/13959281
    .
    If you set these up wrong they will cause you no end of grief, like not being able to get your boot out…. I learnd the hard way. :)

  16. […] depending on where you are trying to put the binder on. Burton Avenger did a good write up on rear entry options out there. The Ride Contraband and K2 Auto Evars are other quick binders you could look […]

  17. Kevin Pearce says:

    Cool article man! Takes me back to the days boarding in Ontario doing 200 laps in a day. K2 Step in and Flows were so popular because they kept you from sitting down and freezing your butt. With the quick entry you could keep up with your skiier buddies off the chairlift. I think these binding are best saved for the short slopes of the east.

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