Do you prefer quad skating or inline skating? It might depend on what decade you were born in. Learn when inline skates were invented, how they got popular, and how to learn to rollerblade with Fun Spot’s 5 things you might not know about inline skating.
- Inline skates were invented as a substitute for ice skates by a Minnesota hockey player. He wanted a convenient way to practice during the off-season. Inline skating became popular with hockey players, figure skaters, and speed skaters before hitting its stride with the public. Over half of the 2014 US Speed Skating team got their start in competitive inline skating!
- Do you call inline skates “rollerblades?” Just like the Kleenex vs tissues debate, skaters are invested in whether to call these alternate roller-skates “rollerblades” or “inline skates.” Rollerblade is actually a brand of inline skates that dominated the market in the 90’s, giving rise to this popular misnomer.
- Speaking of the 90’s, the inline skate craze peaked just before the new millennium. While many skaters prefer quad skates these days, people in the 90’s pushed away from their 80’s heritage by trading quad skates for inline skates. You can see inline skates in popular music videos, movies, and advertisements from that decade.
- Just like quad skating, inline skating ranks in the top 5 best forms of exercise. Not only is skating fun, it’s low impact, solitary or social, and easy to learn for people of all ages. Rent inline skates at your local skating center, learn aggressive skating to satisfy your inner thrill seeker, or practice competitive speed skating to hone your skills.
- Practical advice: if you’re just learning to skate on inlines, it’s doubly important to stick by the wall. While some inline skates have rubber brakes on the heel, many do not. Experienced skaters use momentum and sharp movements to stop, but beginner skaters might need a helping hand. Skaters used to quad skates may have trouble reversing their braking motion; quad skates have a brake on the toe instead of the heel.
Want to give inline skating a whirl? Stop by the Fun Spot rent shop during any of our normal skating sessions and ask for inlines.