• Eva

The basics of buying roller skates

There are a few things that you need to think of before buying roller skates. The more obvious ones are of course things like what kind of skating that you'll be doing (artistic, park skating, outdoor cruising, roller derby and so on), and what your price range is (quality is more expensive, but might be cheaper in the end, since you will not be buying new parts or even completely new skates as often).

But one thing that I wish that I had known earlier, is that it's a good idea to think of WHERE you want to buy your skates. I live in a relatively small city in Sweden (which means that it's the 4th biggest in Sweden, but that doesn't mean anything, since Sweden is such a small and sparsly populated country in general) and there are no skate shops where I live. It took me several tries of buying skates online, until I realized that:

1. A good skate shop will help you select good skates for you

2. A good skate shop will carry quality skates

3. If you support your local skate shop, it will continue to be there

I bought my first pair of skates from Wish (the Chinese app) and I don't recommend that. At all. They were awful (but they looked nice), everything from the boot to the plate to the wheels was just crap. But I didn't know any better! I just liked the price and how they looked and I couldn't quite understand all the technical stuff about skates yet.

Then I tried the Skatepro web shop. That went a little better, but once again, the skates weren't that good, and no one seemed to have checked them for flaws. The bearings were stuck on the axels and I couldn't get them off. Since I had bought quite cheap skates, I needed to change the wheels. So that didn't work out all that well.

Then I tried the two skate shops that sell roller skates in Sweden - and what a difference! I bought Moxi skates from Sticky Skates in Gothenburg and then I went to Kahalani in Stockholm to get my Riedell derby skates. And both the service and the skates were awesome!

So these are my recommendations for beginners buying roller skates:

1. Decide what kind of skating that you want to to do (artistic, derby and so on)

2. Find the skate shop closest to you

3. See what kind of skates they offer

4. Research the skates they offer - this is important, you need to know what you're buying (read reviews and watch YouTube reviews, just make sure that the skater that is doing the review isn't sponsored by the company that they're reviewing, which is quite common)

5. If you're able to go to the skate shop in person, try on several pairs of skates and pick the sales persons brain about everything skate related (this is so, so good!)

6. Get appropriate wheels - if you're a beginner, you'll probably do better on softer wheels at first (I'd personally recommend Radar Energy for outdoor skating, Radar Bullet for derby skating, Moxi trick wheels for the ramp and Moxi Fundae for the skate park)

7. Loosen the trucks a bit (otherwise turning will be almost impossible) but not too much

8. If you're gonna be skating indoors, you might want to make sure that your toe stop isn't black - since some places claim that the black toe stops leave marks on the floor and have forbidden them)

9. Have fun on your new skates!

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