How to Choose the Best Beginner Speed Skates

If there’s one thing that every beginner has in common, it’s a fast learning curve and this is especially true for beginners on roller skates. The first month on speed skates will either make you or break you but you will learn more during this time than in the near future. Beginner skaters are like sponges and the first couple months are when newbies soak up all the fundamentals that lay the foundation. From balance, confidence, stopping to starting and everything in between learning to speed skate starts with choosing the right pair of roller skates!

Let’s first define what a speed skate is, shall we?

Speed skates are among one of the most popular design styles of roller skates and they are meant to go fast. Speed skates feature low cut boots that fit your feet similar to tennis shoes and this low cut design helps you cut corners and maintain agility. As a result of the freedom they provide, these skates are very popular for jam (dance) skating and of course, speed skating. They also feature speed style wheels and bearing which enable skaters to skate faster and longer.

Ask yourself these 5 questions and you will be well prepared to make a decision about which speed skates are best for you!

1. Do you like using velcro straps?

Let’s lay out the pros and cons of velcro straps:

+ Help you achieve a custom snug fit

+ Very simple to use!

+ Velcro straps can quickly be adjusted on the go

+ Prevent laces from untying

- Velcro straps collect dirt and debris

- May stretch over time and prohibit you from keeping a snug fit

-  The comfort of your skates will be affected if the velcro strap were to break off

If you are buying beginner speed skates for someone who uses velcro straps on their tennis shoes, we reckon they will easily adapt to this style. The pros of velcro straps outweigh the cons and it really comes down to personal taste.

2. Will you be using your speed skates for roller derby?

Search for a pair of speed skates that match your derby team colors. You also want to be sure you buy speed skates with adjustable toe stops to become accustomed to the distance between the toe stop and the track. Roller derby is most often played indoor so look for skates with indoor wheels.

3. Will you be skating indoors or outdoors?

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4 Tips for Using Speed Skates

We think that deep down, everyone has a need for speed. Perhaps you fulfill this need behind the wheel, on your feet, at your job or on your roller skates. Living in slo-mo is just boring and no matter how easy going you might be, never let life pass you by. Instead, keep up with it or make it catch up to you!

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With that said, we present to you the top 4 tips for using speed skates because, well, that’s how we recommend fulfilling your need for speed :) . Beyond strapping them on your feet and hauling bullets down your neighborhood hill, there’s more to speed skates than what meets the eye but most of the magic lies in the bearings!

1. Consistently Clean Your Bearings (Caring For Your Bearing)

Did you know you should clean your bearings every time you skate? We know, this is like saying you should do the dishes after each time you finish your meal. It so much easier to just toss them in the sink and tell yourself “I’ll do them later”.

Similarly, cleaning your bearings is a time consuming and dirty task but the more you keep up with it the faster you’ll go.

Flip your skates upside down and listen closely as you spin each wheel. Keep an ear out for any weird sounds like grinding and crunching; those are your signals to start cleaning! On the other hand, chirping and squeaking noises mean you should lubricate your bearings.

Yes, your wheels can chirp.

2. Know The Difference Between Bearing Cleaners and Bearing Lubricators

DO NOT USE WD-40. Not only do we like selling you the proper solutions for cleaning your bearings, we also don’t want you to be left with a film coating on your bearings which collects dirt and dust.

  • Orange 409 will do the trick for cleaning bearings
  • Spray the bearings and use newspaper because cloths and rags will leave behind lint.
  • Do not rinse bearings in water, let them air dry and then move on to the lubricating.

The Bionic Bearing Wash is perfect for removing debris and contaminants from your bearings.

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Now on to the fun part that gives your speed skates the speed they deserve; lubrication!

After your bearings are properly cleaned we recommend to apply lubrication.

  • The heavier the lubricant, the longer it will last on your bearings.
  • Bones Speed Cream and Lynx Swift lube are very good for bearings

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3. Keep It To The Streets!

A  common stopping techniques for beginners is to fly off into the grass. It’s great for your safety but not so much for the health of your bearings. Grass is filled with dirt and crud and when these particles get into the bearings, it clogs them up and can cause them to seize up.

  • Steer clear of water and jump the puddles! Water dilutes the lubrication and will cause your bearings to rust.

Even if you take our advice, you’ll notice that your skates won’t ride smooth forever. After 6 months to about a year and depending on how often you skate, bearings wear down. Sorry to break it to ya!

4. Set & Achieve Goals

Most of us make fun out of speed skating but if you want to take it to the next level for physical fitness you should start tracking your distance and then surpass it each new time you skate. Refer to our top iOS and Android Apps  guide for roller skaters to help you out with this or you can just track your time.

Turn on your timer, turn up your tunes and cruise on. Going longer and further distances is rewarding like beating your last high score on Flappy Birds, except speed skating gives back.

Speed skating is one of the most enjoyable and healthiest ways to exercise on the planet and it’s so nice to know summer is just around the bend!

Introduce Yourself to the ROCK GT-50 Skate

Allow us to introduce you to one of the newest skates to come from Sure-Grip, the ROCK GT-50 skates. This great skate is available in an all-new color and features a setup that is perfectly suited for everyone from beginning to advanced skaters.

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The Setup
This speed skate is as beautiful as it is durable. The synthetic leather boot features a soft grey color that compliments the included GT-50 swirl wheels in black and white. All of this is supported by a double-action ROCK plates and ABEC-5 bearings. Inside, this skate features soft, cushioned insoles, a cushioned collar and soft lining for a comfortable ride. The power-strap will keep your foot where it needs to be push after push. Adjustable toe stops.

The Wheels
The Rock grey speed skate comes with GT-50 wheels featuring a white and black
swirl design. These wheels measure 62mm by 40 mm and have a hardness of 96A,
making them ideal for rink use. One of the best things about these wheels is that
they offer great performance at an affordable price; so replacing them down the line won’t break the bank.

SizingThis great speed skate is available in men’s sizes ranging from 5 to 13. Ladies, these skates will be just as comfortable for you as they are for the men if you go down one size from your normal size when ordering.