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10 Reasons to Get Inline

August 25, 2011 General No Comments

10 Reasons to get inline
By Quint Randle
Oct 30, 2001, 08:01


(Courtesy: Bauer)

If you’re one of those people who thinks that hockey season ends when the Stanley Cup is awarded, then you obviously haven’t discovered inline skates. You may call yourself a hockey “purist,” or be afraid of injury because concrete is “harder than ice.” But it’s time to face facts: inline skating and roller hockey are becoming a combination of fun and serious training for players of all types—from beginners to NHL all-stars. In addition, inline skating is becoming an important first step towards ice skating for many start-up players.

So whether you’re a puck procrastinator or simply faint-of-heart, here are 10 reasons why you should quit messing around, and get inline with the rest of us!


#1. It’s more than a fad.

Discard the idea that your inline skates will end up on the shelf with your Pet Rock and mood ring collections. Inline skating is here to stay. More importantly, you really will get hooked. Just ask anyone who’s tried it. Not ready to take someone else’s word for it? Go to one of the increasing number of inline skate rental shops around the country and see for yourself. You really can try before you buy!


#2. It’s a great workout.

Inline skating is an excellent way to get in shape or maintain your level of fitness. Inlines offer fantastic aerobic benefits without the heavy pounding on feet, knees and back inflicted by many other types of exercise (not to mention the sore bottom that comes with an aggressive bike ride!). You can increase your heart rate and keep it at a specific pace, with very little wear and tear on the rest of your body. You can slow down, speed up, and if you get tired, just glide. You can’t do that in tennis shoes!


#3. Improve your ice skating.

Just about anything you can do on ice skates, you can do on inline skates—with some wheels you can even do “hockey stops.” On high-end skates, you can “rocker” the wheels to even further simulate an ice skate blade. On the ice, it takes time for the novice to “feel” and use the inside and outside edges of the skate blades. But on inlines, everything is exaggerated. You really learn to feel and use those inside and outside edges. Even without trying, your balance, agility and crossovers will all be better when you step back on the ice.


#4. Dryland training is in.

More and more ice hockey teams require players to have inline skates. In addition to recommending personal workouts, teams are holding dryland practices to focus on specific plays and positional drills. Skills and endurance can be greatly improved off the ice. Just imagine how good the old Soviet teams would have been if they had inlines back when they were pioneering dryland training techniques—and dominating the hockey world.


#5. Ease into the ice game.

Ice hockey can be very intimidating to newcomers. People in the South and West didn’t grow up playing hockey on the frozen pond in the back yard. But now inline skates—and a good street puck or ball—means anyone can take up the game. So you hockey watchers who have been aching to give the sport a try, try roller hockey. Your chance to get into the game is as close as your driveway.


#6. The “rink” is always open.

Forget about ice time and public skating sessions. With inline skates you can workout just about anytime and anywhere you’d like. If you feel like taking a midnight skate, or play parking-lot pick-up at dawn, there’s nothing stopping you. A friend of mine works out (stick, puck and all) during his lunch hour on an empty level of his office building’s parking structure. With inline skates, the game goes where you go.


#7. It’s great family fun.

One woman I know started to feel left out when her husband and two sons got skates, so she bought some herself. Now the whole family skates together on bike trails near their Chicago home. Is there an infant in the family? Why not start the tyke up early by pushing the pram in front of you while you roll around the park?

So if your kids, spouse or significant other is complaining that you don’t spend enough time with them, do something about it! Buy them inline skates. Just be sure everyone has the proper head, knee and elbow protection.


#8. It’s hands-free transportation.

Do you live close to work? Have you ever been stuck at home during a bus or subway strike? Is it hard to strap your briefcase or portfolio to that 10-speed? Why not commute on inlines?


#9. It’s low-cost fun.

For parents on a budget, youth roller hockey is an excellent alternative to ice hockey. Floor time is a lot cheaper than ice time, thus league sign-up fees and dues are a fraction of ice hockey costs. Inline skates cost about the same as ice skates, but the rest of the gear is somewhat cheaper. Besides, roller hockey doesn’t require as much gear.


#10. It’s a great way to meet people.

Why go to a health club or night club when the great outdoors is the best place to meet people who share your interest in—at the very least—skating? The way I figure it, any relationship that starts on wheels is destined to move forward.


Remember, whether you’re a veteran inline skater or a first-timer, it’s extremely important to wear proper head, knee and wrist guards. You’ll be amazed how much more fun skating is when you’re not afraid of falling!

— Q Bryce

This first appeared in the 08/1995 issue of Hockey Player Magazine®
© Copyright 1991-2001 Hockey Player® and Hockey Player Magazine®

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