The aesthetics of snowboarding, where the backcountry has changed values


Keigo fell in love with snowboarding from the day he went into the backcountry for the first time. What on earth brought him into the world of snowboarding?

We asked him about his thoughts on Lehmans, as he works as a salesman for THE NORTH FACE at work, and loves the outdoors, mountain climbing and snowboarding in his private life.

Get addicted to snowboarding in the backcountry

During his school days, from the 4th grade of elementary school until he graduated from university, Keigo's life revolved around basketball. In college, I started my own basketball club, which eventually grew to around 20 members. He continued playing basketball because ``through basketball, I was able to interact with many different people.''

I started snowboarding on a high school graduation trip. However, because he was passionate about basketball, he didn't have many opportunities to go snowboarding during his university days.

One day, I saw Taiga's post on social media. Taiga and I were classmates in elementary and junior high school, and we often hung out together, but after we separated when we both went to high school, we didn't have much contact.

I saw Taiga using a THE NORTH FACE backpack when she was traveling around the world during her university days.At that time, I was also working at THE NORTH FACE, so we had a conversation. I remember being invited to spread out and say, ``Let's go snowboarding!''

Then, during Keigo's first year in the workforce, he decided to go snowboarding with Taiga. After that, we went snowboarding together several times, and Taiga invited me to go snowboarding in Hokkaido next time.

“Of course, I accepted the invitation. When I arrived at Niseko, I was taken to the backcountry. I had no experience, so I was scared at first. But once we reached the peak, I was so excited. It wasn't snowing, which was great."

From the day I went to the backcountry, I fell in love with snowboarding and snowboarded in the backcountry of Hakkoda and the slopes of Gunma.

Keigo loves the outdoors, so just being in nature gets him excited. It was the backcountry that made him fall in love with snowboarding, but what changed him?

``I like the moment when the powder is rising when snowboarding, and when I ski, I keep in mind how I can get the powder clean.''When it comes to backcountry skiing, I'm all about the ``do-pow'' of ``men-tsuru,'' so I have the mountain all to myself. It felt like I was doing it and it was fun.”

His backcountry snowboarding aesthetic seems to be one of treating the mountains as a blank canvas.

Outdoor work and private life

Keigo works for Goldwin, which owns brands such as THE NORTH FACE and HELLY HANSEN, and works as a salesperson at THE NORTH FACE store.

``I originally wanted to be a math teacher, so I was in the math department at university.At the time, while working as a basketball advisor, I wanted to become a math teacher like the one I admired in high school. ”

After that, I went through many twists and turns, and when I was job-hunting, I was selected for an engineer position. Although he was successfully offered a job offer, when he attended the job offer ceremony, he realized that the company's atmosphere didn't seem like a good fit for him, so he immediately decided to decline the offer.

After that, as he had been playing basketball for many years, he started working for companies related to sports and outdoor activities, and eventually got a job offer from Goldwin.

``I'm usually shy, so when I first joined the company, my job as a salesperson was quite tough. All I did was fold clothes at the corner (lol)

However, as I started talking to customers more and more, I started to find it fun to get excited about the common topic of the outdoors. Lately, when it comes to work, I've been able to switch things up, and I've been able to work in customer service with a sense of fulfillment. ”

Keigo says he plans to continue working at Goldwin.

``Even if I change jobs, I would like to continue working as a salesperson.I like serving customers, so I would like to continue doing this job.''

We asked Keigo how he spends his days off.

``I basically have weekdays off from work, but I go mountain climbing with my colleagues from work, and walk around town with my juniors.As expected, many people at work like the outdoors.

I often go mountain climbing in the summer because it feels good. I go to the backcountry in the winter, so if you think about it, I'm climbing mountains all year round (lol)."

Although he loves mountains now, he used to only go snowboarding or camping once a year. After I started working at THE NORTH FACE, I became obsessed with the outdoors.

``If I don't do outdoor activities such as mountain climbing, I won't be able to introduce my products to customers at work, so I've been doing outdoor activities even more actively, even though I've always loved them.' '

Promote the Lehmans brand to the world

Last winter, when Taiga said, ``It seems like we can make snowboards ourselves!'', we all started trying to make snowboards together. After that, Taiga started contacting factories and other companies, and gradually preparations were made to make snowboards.

``At first, I thought I was just making snowboards as a hobby, but as I was making them, I started thinking, ``Maybe it would be fun to sell them,'' and within about six months from the idea, I started the company. We have started selling by pre-order.

To be honest, I was surprised because I never imagined that I would be involved in this full-scale activity, but I have always loved selling products, so I am excited about Lehmans' future activities. ”

At Lehmans, Keigo is said to be in charge of SNS management.

"I've always loved SNS, so I'm currently managing SNS with Yossy.

When we first started Lehmans, Taiga's ideas for posting on social media were ridiculous (lol).After that, when I started writing the texts for him, it started to become more fun. ”

Currently, Keigo creates the outline of the text for SNS and posts it while consulting with Yossy.

“Right now, I am working to make as many people as possible in the world aware of the existence of Lehmans.When I go to the slopes and see someone with a red Lehmans snowboard, I get really excited. Because I think so!”

Keigo emphasized that the snowboards sold by Lehmans are made for office workers, so they are cheap but high quality.

“There are so many people who love snowboarding who have started their own brand and are making snowboards, so we have confidence in our products.Normally people wouldn't make snowboards themselves (lol)

In that sense, I think the Lehmans members are the best playmates. I think Lehmans is the best brand, so I'd be happy if everyone could relate to it. ”

He will be posting his daily life and tools on SNS based on Lehmans' theme of "holidays".

The Lehmans concept of ``designing a rich holiday for office workers'' is a reality that the Lehmans members have personally embodied. You can check out the progress on Instagram, so please follow us.


Question and answer profile

Main instance: +15°/-9°

Stance width: 52cm

Binding used: Burton Malavita

Boots used: Burton Fiend limited

Home slope: Oze Iwakura

Favorite location: The cityscape seen from the mountain, being in the forest

Happy moment: When I saw beautiful powder while skiing down the slopes

Special move: Dive from the snow eaves

Snowboarder I respect: Travis Rice


[Interview/Written by: Kazuki Yasui]