Sabtu, 24 April 2021

The Best Roller Blades, According to Inline Skaters

As with so many ’90s things, roller-blading is back. Even Chris Evans does it. Even if the last time you strapped on a pair of roller blades (also known as “inline skates”) was your eighth-grade best friend’s roller-rink birthday party — there are plenty of modern options out there for all experience levels and road conditions. When it comes to investing in a pair of roller blades, there is a surprising amount to consider: the number and size of the wheels, the length of the frame (the part that the wheels are attached to), and the stiffness or cushiness of the boot, which all affect control and maneuverability. To find out which skates are the best for recreational skating, city skating, and more, we talked to eight roller-blading instructors, retailers, and skating enthusiasts about their favorites.





But before we get into their picks, it’s important to mention that now, as Teshia Robinson, of RollATL, says, “is definitely not the time to take a trip to the ER. We highly recommend at minimum wearing a helmet to protect against brain injury and concussions.” Robinson suggests Triple8 and S1 hard shell helmets, which she says “provide much more protection than a typical bike helmet.” In addition to strapping on a helmet, Robinson suggests that if possible, beginner inline skaters first bike the route that they plan to skate, so they can get a sense of the terrain. “New skaters should avoid downhills (even moderate ones, as you can pick up speed quickly and it is difficult to brake) as well as rough or uneven pavement,” she says. “Smooth, flat pavement is the best place for new skaters to practice and build the muscles needed for balance and muscle memory for braking.”

If you’re just learning to skate, there are plenty of resources out there, too. Arnav “Sonic” Shah, a skating instructor and member of the Empire Skate Club of New York, suggests checking out Skate Instructors Association, which includes hundreds of online classes. Shah also cites Alex Shulgan of InMove Skate’s YouTube channel (Shulgan also recommends some skates below) as a useful place to find how-to videos, as well as Asha Kirkby of Skate Fresh, who has been teaching skating for twenty years and offers free online lessons. [Editor’s note: Many of the skates included below are available only in limited sizes. We will update as more become available.]


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