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What To Keep In Mind While Buying Hockey Skates

Author : Marcus Glenn

Submitted : 2008-10-27 00:00:00    Word Count : 714    Popularity:   183

Tags:   Sports, Hockey, Sports equipment

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Skates donít come cheap and they are perhaps one of the most important pieces of equipment next to hockey sticks for a hockey player. Therefore it becomes quite important to understand how to purchase skates that will aid your play and help you enjoy the game better. If you are a beginner and are planning to buy yourself a new pair of skates then here are some basic tips to get you started:

1.) Difference between sizing of hockey skates and regular shoes

Hockey skates are generally sized an inch or two smaller than your regular shoes. The reason they are sized smaller is for ankle support and stability. If you get them bigger you will have no support whatsoever and will have a better chance of falling. In addition too much space for your foot to move about in a loose hockey skate may result in injury such as blisters and sprains.

Here are a few points to keep in mind:

a.) Hockey skates need to have a tight fitting. Your toes should be able to feel the front end of the skate while your heel is backed up into the back part of the skate

b.) Different brands have different sizing guidelines. So make sure to check them out before you go for the buy.

c.) Lace up the hockey skates and try to move about by bending your knees to a point where you are almost squatting. In this position, you should feel the toe area loosen up a bit. Considering the fact that your knees will usually be bent as you skate, a feel of comfort in this position is important.

d.) Never buy skates to grow into. This will put you in a risk of injury.

e.) Try to go for boots that come with a multi layered boot construction and reinforced heel. Both these factors aid ankle stability

2.) Blade radius

Blade radius is the actual amount of blade that is in contact with the ice at any point of time. For beginner skaters a larger blade radius of around five inches is recommended. A larger radius increases stability and aids easy maneuverability along the ice surface.

To measure blade radius place the ends of the blades together (bottom to bottom). The length where the edges of the blades make contact is the blade radius.


3.) Break-in period

Break-in period of a skate is the amount of time it takes for the padded lining of the skate to get molded and adjusted to the shape of your feet. How soon the break-in happens depends on a lot of factors like the quality of lining and body-weight of the player among others. A heavier person will generally have a faster break-in period than a light person. So if you have lighter body mass, try to go for skates with a softer lining. You can also try the following tips to for a faster break-in:

a.) Blow hot air into your skate with a blow dryer keeping the dryer at a safe distance. Put the skate on immediately after around 3 minutes of blow drying. This will cause the foam to mold to your foot faster.

b.) Try coating the inside of your skates with thin layer of petroleum jelly, it softens them up. This will aid in a faster break-in as well

4.) Used or New Skates?

Hockey skates are supposed to be stiff. This is something that you should be aware of before buying them. Some people might opt to buy the less expensive used hockey skates instead of the more expensive brand new ones. Bear in mind that used skates may have lost their stiffness factor which is essential for more powerful skating action and support for the legs, feet and ankles.

5.) How much to invest?

You can buy a good pair of skates for anything around $100 to $700. It is recommended not to buy expensive skates for your first pair. Until you play in a league you wonít know what position you are playing or what kind of skate with best accommodate it. The first pair is more for practice and introduction to the sport.

Good luck and play hard!

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others Sport1912 is an online retailer selling a range of sports equipment that includes cricket, hockey, rugby and fishing equipment among

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