On 14 March 2008 at 00:00 | updated on 18 January 2012 at 19:33

How to choose your long rides roller-skates

How to choose your long rides roller-skates

Each product is adapted to specific needs – that's the case for fitness or long rides skates. That's why the first thing to do is to think about your actual needs before investing. Here you'll find a few pieces of information that may help you to make the right choice...


An expensive investment that requires a few time to think about

Below are some of the few questions a vendor should ask to propose the right product...

How often do you ride?

According to that criteria technical features of the rollerskates will change : more comfortable boots, bigger wheels, longer blades...

Hard boot or soft boot with spoiler (cuff)?

If you're not that regular skater and you just make short distance rides hard boots will suit you. If you're long distance skater then purchase soft boots (including spoiler). In general plastic boots are cheaper but less comfortable but we higlhy recommand to choose soflt boots + spoiler : you'll be able to keep it longer even when becoming more experienced rider.

Your average riding distance?

By now most of the long distance skates include big diameter wheels. The further you'll ride, the bigger your wheels must be. Think also about landscapes relief : if very undulating smaller wheels will be more adapted.

What wheel diameter will be the best?

Check the below chart that may help in your choice.

About wheel hardness ?

Most of the fitness wheels hardness varies from 78 to 85A.
For memory 78A is smooth and 85A is hard rubber wheel.
Smoother wheel will wear out faster but will show a better grip on bad surfaces.
Harder wheel will have better rolling and will last longer, but will give less comfort. The choice is yours !

How much do you want to pay ?

Fitness & long distance skates may cost 50 to 400 Euros, depending on the ranges.
The cheapest: from 50 to 100 Eur - will have hard plastic boots, plastic blades and small diameter wheels.
In average prices: 100 to 200 Eur – you'll find soft boot + spoiler and stamped or extruded aluminium blades and mid diameter wheels.
The top range skates: soft boot + spoiler and high diameter extruded aluminium blades. Those ones will cost from 200 to more than 400 Eur.

What sizing will suit you ?

In general the best is to avoid too big sizing as it causes frictions, pressures and footaches.
So forget about common idea that you must feel "at ease" from the first try in your brand new skates. If necesary you should get max ½ to 1 size bigger than your trainers but not more. To test your future rollerskates is the key to get the right ones. Some trademarks may require to take one size smaller than your usual trainers.

Here are some pieces of advice to test rollerskates an efficient way

- First – and the easiest - Choose a pair of skates
- Have a sit on the bench and put both skates on
- One of the boots feeling tight in length seems it's too short
- If you feel OK then adjust your heel on the back of the skates (look at the photograph)
- Tighten the skates starting by the bottom (laces most of the time)
- Continue to the top of the skates – straps, buckles... – you'll feel your foot gets hold in the back of the skate
- Now stand up ! (carefuly not to fall down)
- Feet will spread in the boots : then check if you feel are in contact with boot sides. Your feet may also touch the front of the skate, but the less it does the best it is.
- To feel pressured on the boot sides means it's too tight
- Keep up with skates tightened and adjusted for 10 to 15 minutes to get sure you feel comfortable...
- If so you'll be able to say : one day those ones will be mine !

Women or man rollerskates ?

For a few years skates manufacturers have been selling unisex, women or men specific models. The foot shape varies accordingly. Women feet are more narrow than men's. The rear cut of the boot is more flare. So the best solution would be to get corresponding sex models.

What trademark is the best for me ?

We won't make no ad for any manufacturer, the choice will be yours in the end.
To be sure to get high quality & comfortable skates trust famous trademarks such as Rollerblade, K2, Roces, Fila... you shouldn't be disapointed ! Keep in mind that your feet shape will have a real influence so the best way to do is to test your future skates in the shop, as described earlier.

Useful links

Choosing your long distance skates (products comparison)
Choosing your long rides roller-skates (general information)
Choosing skates for your kids
What type of roller-skates will suits you ?
Buying second-hand skates
Choosing the right skates: fitness performance by Rollerblade
Choosing the right skates: fitness/recreation by Rollerblade

Text: Alfathor
Translation: Greg77
Images:Alfathor - all rights reserved
Released  on 14 March 2008 - Read 136727 times

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