Roller Skates Buyers Guide

Roller Skates
Buyers Guide

Roller skating was big in the 80s and has seen quite the resurgence over the past few years, for mums and kids alike. Flick through ASOS mag and look in Topshop windows, and you’ll see it’s often a fashion accessory as well as something fun that keeps you fit at the same time. Maybe you’ve seen them around and want to get back into it or maybe you’re completely new to it?

We will take you through what skates are available, the basics of roller skating and what other gear you might need.

The Basics Of Roller Skating

This section is ideal for anyone who is new to roller skating or hasn’t done it in a very long time. We’ll start with the complete basics. Roller skates by definition have two wheels at the front and two at the back, of each skate. This is unlike inline skates where the wheels are in a straight line. This means it’s easier to balance on roller skates as the wheels cover a wider surface area.

#1 Preparing

Start by putting knee and elbow pads on, plus your helmet. Once you’ve got your skates out of the box loosen those laces which will make those snug boots go on much easier.

Put your skates on one at a time while sitting down to stop you from falling over as soon as you’ve got them on. Once they’re on your feet tighten the laces bottom-up, so start at the toe and work your way to the top.

#2 Moving

Once you’ve got those skates on stand up using a skate-less friend to help support you, or something sturdy like a wall. Gradually start to push (or be pulled) along, just to get used to rolling around. This will inevitably feel weird to begin with, but be patient, it’ll get much easier.

A strong roller skating technique involves bending the knee of the leading leg each time you push off to skate, when doing this you want to put pressure through your leading leg thigh and balance over that leg while the rear / supporting leg is toe-tipped outwards. You then repeat this motion, switching leading legs. It’s important to note that your legs should be shoulder width apart while skating. This will maximise surface area and balance while moving. Although difficult at the start, this will become natural as muscle memory kicks in and ability improves over time.

#3 Stopping

Stopping on roller skates differs to inline skates, as you have toe stops instead of brakes at the rear.

The best way of stopping is to use your front font and gently raise the heel, pushing your toe towards the ground.

Don’t put too much pressure through the toe, you want to come to a gradual stand still. Too much pressure will cause you to fall over.

#4 Tricks

Believe it or not it is possible to do tricks on roller skates. Check out Michelle Steilen owner of Moxi skates doing lots of street tricks in last years Bones Bearings video.

If you’d like to get in to tricks then please master the basics of roller skating, wear protective gear and skate within your limits!

What Roller Skates Are Available?

Here we will take you through the different types of skates and you should be able to find what is most suitable for the type of skating you want to do. We have a great range of adult roller skates and kids skates from 11J all the way to 13A in various styles depending on what you want them for.

Kids Roller Skates

We stock kids roller skates in various styles. Here we will take you through the main differences. As kids feet grow so fast we have many skates that are 3 or 4 size adjustable to counter this. They typically have a locking mechanism that holds the skates in a fixed size, that is simple to adjust as their feet grow. Hard boot skates are sturdy and protective. They offer great stability and support. Soft boot skates are comfortable and ergonomic. They have slightly less support but still enough to give you what is needed. Beyond the adjustable skates we have the fixed sized fashion skate options. The must have skates here are from two UK brands; Rio roller skates and Rookie roller skates, both offering many throwback colourways that will give you an explosion of colour under your feet.

Womens Roller Skates

Women’s roller skates can be broken down into three types – classic, fashion and function. Again both Rio and Rookie lead in the fashion skate area, both giving your look a retro vibe with max comfort and style. Figure Skates are the classic option, designed for a dance style look, similar to ice dancers with fantastic performance. Lastly the Ventro Pro Turbo is based on the original, classic and notorious Bauer boot meaning it’s designed for maximum performance and support. This is the functional option for more serious skaters.

Mens Roller Skates

Men typically look at the Ventro Pro Turbo skates, which are solid and offer fantastic support. It’s hard shell is long lasting and it has the classic look of the original Bauer Turbo.

There are also some figure style skate options in men’s sizes such as the Rookie Artistic Skate in black.