Buying skates is not only a challenge to newbies but also to adults looking for a change in new pairs. Besides, beginners hardly benefit from top quality skates as they are still learning to skate. Nonetheless, they should just stick to a pair of skates that fit very well and provide solid protection during skating.
However, an adult with better skating skills can really benefit from a pair of quality durable skates, but remember that a child will always outgrow them so quality is never an issue for them, even if they are well conversant with skating. They will probably outgrow them within a year.
Therefore, here is a guide on how to buy skates, regardless of who you are buying them for. You can also check out Best Skate Reviews for honest and most complete reviews on ice skates.
Buy Your Skates at a Sports Store
You should avoid department stores and discount warehouses if you are buying your skates for the first time or have no idea how to go about the whole process. Instead, opt for a sports store with knowledgeable staff as well as a wider selection of skates. The staff will guide you in selecting the appropriate size, style and type, be it for a kid or an adult beginner.
However, if you are a professional skater, who knows and understands different models of skates, then you can buy anywhere you want or where your specific model/type is being sold.
Never Use Your Shoe Size to Buy Skates
You should never use your actual shoe size to buy your skates. Rather it should be at least one or two sizes smaller than your shoe size. Skates should have a comfortable snugly fit than your actual street shoes.
Besides, different manufacturers have different sizing parameters. Therefore, it does not matter if you know your skate size or not, as it might not fit if it is from different manufacturers. So just fit it and as long as it is a comfortable tight fit that does not hurt your feet, buy it.
Do Not Count on Growing into Them
Big or large skates never allow for proper skating. Therefore, never buy skates that are not your size, in the hope that you will fit into them with time.
However, growing young adults need some growth room for their skates, but that does not mean you go for a bigger size. You can buy skates that are one size above your actual size.
It is advisable to get a lower end skate that will fit a little bit better, every year than a top of the line skate that fits properly for a short period. A top of the line skates will only give you blisters, bone spurt, and even calluses.
Carry Your Sports Sock to the Store
If you want a proper fitting skate, then carry your sports socks to the store for a proper feel and fit. As much as some people, skate barefoot, no sock. This can lead to excess feet sweating, which in turn soaks the boot and makes the skates deteriorate faster.
Therefore, it is important to wear the socks during skating, so include them during your snug fitting.
Check for Level of Protection
Top quality skates should protect your toes, the sides of your feet as well as the boot tongue. Therefore, it should have a reinforced toe and a tough nylon boot. The tall part on its back should be solid and steady for proper ankle support as well as the protection of the Achilles tendon.
Moreover, you should look for a tongue that stays in place when the skate is laced. Besides, check for the material used to line the toe on the inside of the skate boots. It should be top quality to reduce any chance of an injury.
Ask for Boot Stiffness
Skates have different levels of stiffness, depending on their model. The stiffest skates are usually reserved for advanced professional players with an adult or near-adult weight. Besides, they are very expensive.
Kids usually need moderately stiff skates or flexible ones.
Check for Extra Skate Covers
You should always get an initial skate sharpening when you buy a pair of skates. Nonetheless, you can ask if there are some other free subsequent sharpenings, in the purchase deal.
Moreover, you can ask if your skates are fitted with heat molding, whereby you will be able to warm it in a special oven and manage to wear it for at least 20 minutes as it cools while molding the inner lining of the foot.
Other covers can include future fitting adjustments, using a technique known as punching in case the skates are uncomfortably tight or small.
Conclusively, buying skates is never that easy, especially if you are not a professional skater. However, the tips above can guide you into buying the best fit for you and your kids.