Time and time again, people have proved that age is just a number. Last year, a video of a 73-year-old lady doing inline skating, surfaced online. She was not just skating, but she was doing it pretty well. It is evident that you are never too old to start inline skating.
Not only inline skating, but you can also begin playing basketball or table tennis. All-in-all, you can do whatever you want, age is not a barrier. The only thing that your age represents is the experience that you have under your belt, which younger people don't have. More often than not, this experience turns out to be useful.
Take the case of Indian Premier League, teams with experienced (old) players like Chennai Super Kings tends to do better than teams with young players like Delhi Capitals. Thus, if you stop yourself from doing something because you consider yourself old, don't do it.
If you want to start Inline skating, you can learn it any age. Moreover, skating is fun, and it may be one of the best ways to spend your free time.
It will help you to stay fit both mentally and physically. And you will have one more story to tell your grandchildren. But before starting inline skating, there are few things that you should know about it like how the Inline skates are different from Roller skates, which types of skates to use when, and more.
Dive in and learn everything there is to know about inline skating.
What are Inline skates?
Before talking about Inline skates, let's understand what precisely is inline skating. Without understanding Inline skating, it is challenging to understand Inline skates.
Inline skating is a type of competitive skating, which is now practiced internationally. It is done at various places, including but not only, skate parks, race tracks, off-road and urban areas. Some of the most popular kinds of Inline Skating events are mentioned below.
Vert Skating: It is a type of gymnastics done on vert ramps with skates.
Inline Speed Skating: This type of skating involves racers using Inline skates to run around tracks.
Inline Hockey: It is somewhat similar to ice hockey. Players wear Inline skate to compete on wooden or concrete surfaced courts.
Road Skating: This may be the most common Inline skating. Players wear skates and ride on roads.
Hence, to participate in all these events, you need a particular set of footwear, which is called Inline skates.
Inline skates, often referred to as Rollerblades, are used in various types of Inline skating, few of which are mentioned above. "Rollerblades" is a renowned company that manufactures Inline skates. It has become so famous among skaters, that they have started calling the Inline skates as Rollerblades. Besides Rollerblades, several other companies have also started manufacturing them.
Inline skates are inspired by ice skates, and they were meant to motivate ice skaters to keep skating in the warmer seasons. Many famous ice skaters were Inline skaters in the beginning.
Inline skates are like boots with wheels attached below. Actually, inline skates feature a single frame attached to boots that cover the entire length of the sole, and wheels are fixed on it. And there are bearing that allows the wheels to move around the axle freely.
An average pair of Inline skates have four to five tires in a straight line. However, nowadays, three-wheeled skates are becoming popular. Typically, Inline skates have one rubber stop or brake on one foot, fixed to the heel's frame. That said, skates without breaks are also there.
How are Inline skates different from Roller Skates?
Skating is fun, no matter what types of skates you use. Still, it is mandatory to understand the difference between the different types of skates, especially if you are a beginner. After all, you want to buy the perfect pair. Hence, we have compiled a list of differences between the traditional skating concepts, i.e., the Roller skates, and Inline Skates.
The most significant difference between the two skates is the wheel setup. Actually, this dissimilarity in the wheel setup makes all the difference. It affects the functioning of the two skates.
In the case of Roller skates, the four wheels are arranged in two rows, similar to a car. Plus, the wheels are thick with rubber brakes placed in front.
Inline skates can have three, four, or even five wheels, all of which are placed one after the other in a single column. Plus, the wheels are thinner with brakes are placed at the back.
Every type of skate needs some kind of mastery in maintaining steadiness, to ride them effortlessly. However, some are easier to balance than others.
The traditional quads with four wheels offer better stability, mainly because of the broader rink. Further, they are perfect for cruising.
Rollerblades are less stable when compared to quads because the rink's width is less.
Hence, they are not preferred by causal rink skaters.
The difference in wheel placement does make balancing the rollerblades difficult, but it also makes them faster. Yes, Rollerblades are faster than Roller skates.
Rollerblades have a smaller contact patch because their wheels are taller and narrower than Roller skates, significantly reducing each wheel's contact patch size. And this smaller contact patch turns out to be quite helpful when you are doing anything muscle power like skating. Since shorter the contact size, the more energy you will be converting into forwarding motion and less on flexing the wheel surface.
Therefore, Inlines are favoured by the speed skaters. But you will not be able to skate faster by just wearing a pair of Inline skates, you have to learn proper techniques. We have dedicated the next section to tricks that will help you skate faster.
How to skate faster on Inline skates?
Just like you are never too old to start Inline Skating, you are never too old to learn techniques and tricks that can help you skate faster. You might find them challenging initially and may think skating fast is not your cup of tea, but anybody can learn the techniques.
Here are the two most natural tricks that will help you skate faster on Inline Skates:
The more upright your body posture is, while riding, the more is the air resistance. If you want to race more quickly, you will have to keep the headwind area as small as possible. This can be achieved by bending your needs while keeping the upper body stopped. Additionally, you should also move your hands as if you are sprinting without the skates. It will help you better maintain the balance while skating the steps.
Big, Straight Steps:
Giant steps require more power, which makes them more exhausting. However, to reach the same speed at the same time, a large number of short steps will be required, which substantially increases the energy used. Hence, you will end up spending more energy while skating with small steps. So, to skate faster, use sizable steps. In addition to bigger steps, your feet should be close to each other, a wide-legged stance will reduce the speeds.
Follow the above two tricks, and you will see the difference in your speed.
Inline skates are not just faster, but usually, they are more expensive then Roller skates. Here are some reasons why.
Why are Inline skates expensive then Roller skates?
Both types of skates come in a wide variety of ranges, including different boots, wheels, etc. Thus, they can be both costly and cheap. However, in general, the Inline skates turn out to be more expensive than the Roller skates, mainly because their maintenance cost is more. You will have to change their wheels every four months.
Another reason for Inline skates to be highly-priced is the boot quality, though they both can have high, top, and low, sneaker-style boots. Usually, the quad skates come with a low-quality boot, which doesn't provide much support around the ankles. On the other hand, Inline skates have high molded plastic boots delivering much better ankle support.
Furthermore, Inlines have more expensive unique frames delineated for outdoor skating. They are better on rough surfaces because the unique structures prevent the wheel from getting caught. Plus, they don't produce that much of wheel wobble on large hills.
Inlines may be expensive, but they are not better in every situation. They are tailor-made for some conditions like outdoor skating, but for some, it is best to choose the Roller skates. So, it best to do proper research before you buy a pair, to make things easier for you, we have described various use case scenarios for both types of skates.
Which type of skates to choose when?
Choosing the types of skates depends purely upon what you plan to do with them. For example- if you want fast speeds, then Rollerblades will be a perfect choice. However, if you wish to have agility, then quads will be the way to go. Here are the few use case scenarios of each type of skates:
- Inlines are the perfect choice for roller hockey and speed skating, while quads are best for roller derby and artistic skating.
- Skaters who skate more on walkways and streets prefer Rollerblades because Inline skates are better to compensate for cement defects than Roller skates.
- Easy-going skates that like to remain indoors prefer Quads because they offer steadiness at lower speeds, making them less prone to mishaps.
Both types of skates work quite well for recreational skating if you know your skates in and out.
You are never too old to pick a new hobby, be it Inline skating, swimming or any other thing for that matter. In fact, you should learn new skills, especially an outdoor activity, to keep your body fit. You just have to do proper research before getting into any sports. Like in the case of Inline skating, you should know about the various types of Inline skating and then decide which type will suit your best.
Plus, what makes Inline skate unique, why are they faster and expensive then Roller skates. It will help you understand sports better, and you will be able to get hold of it quickly.
In other words, understanding various aspects of a game is as important as playing it.
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