Best Inline Hockey Skates and Roller Blades

You can easily play hockey or skate in both indoor and outdoor rinks and streets by simply swapping your blades for wheels. So, put away your ice skates, and put on your roller skates. Of course, it’s easier said than done when you have a pair of inline or roller hockey skates. However, things aren’t as easy when you have to go out and purchase a pair. 

In this article, we’ll discuss what the best roller hockey skates on the market are. We’ll also cover the different factors that make them stand out from the sea of products and each product’s individual pros and cons. Why? Because owning the best inline hockey skates is one of the shortcuts to total rink domination because they’ll allow you to spend more energy on the game instead of wasting it trying to skate.

Before we review individual products, allow us to introduce you to our top picks:

Our Top Pick

Bauer Vapor 2X Pro Roller Skates

Bauer Vapor 2X Pro Roller Skates
  • Superb performance
  • Durable
  • Fantastic materials

2nd Best

Mission Inhaler WM01 Roller Skates

Mission Inhaler WM01 Roller Hockey Skates
  • Great Performance
  • Good materials
  • Comfortable

Most Affordable

Alkali Revel 5 Inline Skates

Alkali Revel 5 Inline Skates
  • Comfortable
  • Accessible price tag
  • Heat molding


Top Best Inline Hockey Skates


1. Tour VOLT KV2 Roller Hockey Skates

Tour VOLT KV2 Roller Hockey Skates

Specifications:

  • Fit profile: R/D (Heat molding)
  • Skill Level: Recreational
  • Bearings: Bevo Fold 9 Race Rated

If you’re looking for skates that are comfortable and offer a reasonable level of performance without breaking the bank, VOLT KV2 might be the product you’re looking for.

Design-wise, KV2’s quarter package construction is made using Tour’s new Bionik technology, which uses carbon-weaved materials. This makes the boot exceptionally lightweight and responsive without sacrificing any protection against impacts.

The inside of the inline skates is lined with Sensor Fit Pro Liner and Relay Memory foam, which keeps your foot in place and delivers unparalleled comfort. It will prevent any slippage and provide you with maximum efficiency in every stride. Additionally, the liner has fantastic moisture-wicking properties and helps keep your feet dry and cool during matches.

The bottom half of VOLT KV2 uses a Fuse aluminum split-frame, with two larger rear wheels and two smaller wheels in the front, aiding acceleration. The wheels on this model are the new Kemistry Cyclonium models, which are ideal for different indoor surfaces, like sport courts, wood, etc.

PROS

  • Bevo Gold 9 Race rated bearings
  • Heat moldable
  • Split frame
  • Great comfort

CONS

  • The model could benefit from better wheels

2. Alkali Revel 1 Roller Hockey Skates

Alkali Revel 1 Roller Hockey Skates

Specifications:

  • Fit Profile: R/D (Heat Molding)
  • Skill Level: Elite
  • Bearings: Helo Quark

Alkali Revel 1 ushers in a new era for Alkali Hockey as the company returns to its roller hockey roots, which is shown in this particular product. The Revel 1 showcases all the new construction materials that provide exceptional, almost unreal performance, comfort, and fit at a reasonable price.

Starting with the quarter package, the Alkali Revel 1 inline hockey skates use heat-moldable Revel IX material enhanced with Alkali’s Pro Plus Stiffness technology. This rigid yet lightweight material helps ensure maximum protection while simultaneously providing good energy transfer with each stride.

The inside of the boot uses a moisture-wicking Clarino liner, which wicks away the sweat, keeping your feet dry and thus prevents slippage and discomfort. Alkali also added a unique comfort collar to protect your ankles from unwanted rubbing and irritation, while a two-piece 9mm pro-felt tongue protects the top and front of your foot from lace bites.

On the bottom, Revel 1 features a stiff carbon fiber outsole that helps maximize feel and energy transfer while carrying what seems the most significant change to the Revel line. The outsole carries an Alkali magnesium frame with 80-80-76-76 hi-lo Konixx Pure-X wheel configuration, mounted on high-performance Helo Quark Swiss bearings.

PROS

  • Lightweight
  • Heat-moldable
  • Great performance·       
  • Good materials

CONS

  • The tongue could offer more protection

3. Alkali Revel 4 Roller Hockey Skates

Alkali Revel 4 Roller Hockey Skates

Specifications:

  • Fit Profile: R/D (Heat Molding)
  • Skill Level: Performance·       
  • Bearings: ABEC 9 608 Bearings

The Revel 4 inline skates are the more accessible, performance-oriented version of Alkali Revel 1. As such, they boast similar construction materials while offering similar levels of comfort and performance as their more expensive counterparts.

The quarter package is constructed with the very same Revel IX material, whose improved design is incredibly lightweight, yet stiff enough to provide maximum energy transfer. Furthermore, the material is heat responsive, which allows heat-molding around your feet for maximum comfort, and minimum breaking in period.

The internals are lined with anti-wicking brushed Tricot liner, which adds to the comfort of the skate, given its softness, durability, and moisture-wicking properties. The tongue features a two-piece, Vented Pro felt construction whose thick design protects the top of the foot from forceful impacts and lace-bite.

On the bottom of the boot, the Revel 1 features an embossed PVC outsole with composite overlay, which holds a one-piece Alkali Rize aluminum frame. The frame is paired with Konixx Rebel 74A indoor wheels mounted on ABEC 9 608 bearings.

PROS

  • Reasonable price
  • Good performance
  • Comfortable

CONS

  • Indoor wheels only

4. Alkali Revel 5 Inline Skates

Alkali Revel 5 Inline Skates

Specifications:

  • Fit Profile: R/D (Heat Molding)
  • Skill Level: Recreational
  • Bearings: ABEC 7 608 Bearings

The Alkali Revel 5 are Alkali’s entry-level or recreational inline hockey skates, which is mirrored by their price/performance ratio. Revel 5s will provide good stability, support, and protection without burning a hole in your budget, which is perfect for those playing once or twice a week.

Revel 5’s quarter package is made of Alkali’s Revel CX, a hard material consisting of layers upon layers of compression-molded nylon. It provides excellent stability, support, and comfort for beginner or casual players. In addition, the boot is heat-moldable and comforts around your foot nicely, allowing for a custom fit, and reduced break-in time.

The insides are lined with comfortable, brushed Nylex material, which works to wick away any moisture, keeping you dry and comfortable. Additionally, the thick two-piece Vented Pro Vent tongue is designed to protect the top of your foot while promoting consistent airflow through the boot.

The bottom section of the boot is made of Embossed PVC plastic, which is stiff enough to deliver perfect balance and lateral support. It holds a two-piece Alkali Rize aluminum frame with a hi-lo wheel configuration, which increases agility without compromising top speed.

PROS

  • Accessible price
  • Comfortable
  • Heat molding

CONS

  • The frame could use some improvement

5. Bauer Vapor 2X Pro Roller Skates

Bauer Vapor 2X Pro Roller Skates

Specifications

  • Fit Profile: N, R/C, D (Heat Molding)
  • Skill Level: Elite
  • Bearings: HI-LO Swiss

The Bauer Vapor 2X Pro skates are among Bauer’s top-performance products aimed at elite-level athletes. With it, Bauer sought to bring its extraordinary performance to all hockey players, including those that play ice hockey. In other words, they allow you to swap wheels for blades (sold separately) and enjoy some fun on the ice.

Starting with the boots, the Vapor 2X Pro quarter package is built using Bauer’s Dynaflex system, which forgoes unnecessary stiffness, and allows a very slight amount of flex within the boot. The new design, reinforced at the heel, is constructed from Bauer’s proprietary 3D Silver Carbon Curv Composite material with an X-Rib pattern.

This provides the boot with fantastic energy transferring capabilities, thanks to the snug fit it provides.  Regardless of the decreased stiffness, the Curv Composite material is incredibly lightweight and won’t hinder your performance, yet highly durable and capable of protecting your feet. In addition, the boot’s top is equipped with Recoil Pro Dual injected tongue, which allows more forward flex, and a greater range of motion.

The inside of the boot is lined with a hydrophobic Lock-fit liner and Aerofoam Pro memory foam for additional comfort and unparalleled fit. Everything sits atop a lightweight, full-composite outsole that holds a HI-LO Kryptonium frame, paired with two 80mm Labeda Addiction wheels in the back and two 76mm wheels in the front; all sporting HI-LO Swiss bearings.

The Bauer Vapor 2X Pro skates are among Bauer’s top-performance products aimed at elite-level athletes. With it, Bauer sought to bring its extraordinary performance to all hockey players, including those that play ice hockey. In other words, they allow you to swap wheels for blades (sold separately) and enjoy some fun on the ice.

Starting with the boots, the Vapor 2X Pro quarter package is built using Bauer’s Dynaflex system, which forgoes unnecessary stiffness, and allows a very slight amount of flex within the boot. The new design, reinforced at the heel, is constructed from Bauer’s proprietary 3D Silver Carbon Curv Composite material with an X-Rib pattern.

This provides the boot with fantastic energy transferring capabilities, thanks to the snug fit it provides.  Regardless of the decreased stiffness, the Curv Composite material is incredibly lightweight and won’t hinder your performance, yet highly durable and capable of protecting your feet. In addition, the boot’s top is equipped with Recoil Pro Dual injected tongue, which allows more forward flex, and a greater range of motion.

The inside of the boot is lined with a hydrophobic Lock-fit liner and Aerofoam Pro memory foam for additional comfort and unparalleled fit. Everything sits atop a lightweight, full-composite outsole that holds a HI-LO Kryptonium frame, paired with two 80mm Labeda Addiction wheels in the back and two 76mm wheels in the front; all sporting HI-LO Swiss bearings.

PROS

  • Great performance
  • Increased range of motion
  • Fantastic materials
  • Durable

CONS

  • Not for players with wide feet

6. Bauer Vapor x2.9 Senior Roller Hockey Skates

Bauer Vapor x2.9 Senior Roller Hockey Skates

Specifications:

  • Fit Profile: R/D (Heat Molding)
  • Skill Level: Performance/Elite
  • Bearings: ABEC 9 Bearings

If you’re looking for the best roller hockey skates, well, you’re done looking because Bauer Vapor X2.9 inline skates are one of the best on the market. Offering elite-level performance for a performance-level price, the Vapor X2.9 are great for players who skate 2 to 3 times a week or more.

When you look at the boot’s construction, the first thing noticeable is the quarter package made of 3D Lasted Tech Mesh material, using Bauer’s Perform Flex system. And while this isn’t the stiffest solution in Bauer’s arsenal, it allows an increased range of motion without sacrificing comfort or durability.

The inside of the boot features a combination of Comfort Edge hydrophobic liner and Aerofoam memory padding – both of which add layers of comfort. The first does an incredible job of keeping your feet dry, while the latter keeps them snuggly secured, creating a complete custom fit.

The bottom features a clear TPU non-woven outer sole that supports a HI-LO aluminum frame. It boasts two 76mm wheels in front, and two 80mm wheels in the back, supported by ABEC 9 bearings.

PROS

  • Heat molding
  • Lightweight chassis
  • Comfortable and durable

CONS

  • Not for players with wide feet

7. CCM Tacks 9090 Roller Hockey Skates

CCM Tacks 9090 Roller Hockey Skates

Specifications:

  • Fit Profile: R/D (Heat Molding)
  • Skill Level: Elite
  • Bearings: SWISS 608 Bearings

Though released in late 2018, CCM Tacks 9090 are still considered one of the best roller hockey skates on the market, and for a good reason. They offer elite-level performance at a more affordable cost, without sacrificing any good stuff, like protection, comfort, or performance.

Let’s start with the quarter package; CCM used an elite-level boot constructed using 3D-Lasted technology and RocketFrame composite materials. This design is both lightweight and anatomical, giving players a more controlled feeling.

Harder parts of the interior are constructed using CCM’s Speedcore Technology, which incorporates elite-level stiffness and responsiveness into the design. This, combined with the level of control provided by a thermoformed boot, allows players to generate more power with each stride.

Internally, CCM Tacks 9090 feature asymmetrical multi-density memory foam that provides a more custom fit. In addition, these foams are lined with TotalDri liner, which helps wick away moisture to keep the foot locked and dry. The liner is additionally reinforced with abrasion spots in high wear areas.

Moving on the bottom section of the boot, there’s a stiff, reinforced outsole that provides an efficient energy transfer and supports a FastFrame Aluminum frame. The frame has a straight-wheel design and holds Labeda Addiction Signature wheels with maximum durability and grip.

PROS

  • Great price tag
  • Great materials
  • Quite fast
  • Ultra-lightweight

CONS

  •  None, at this price point

8. Mission Inhaler WM01 Roller Hockey Skates

Mission Inhaler WM01 Roller Hockey Skates

Specifications:

  • Fit Profile: R/D, EE (Heat Molding)
  • Skill Level: Elite
  • Bearings: Hi-Lo SWISS 608 Bearings

Launched for the 2021 season, the Mission Inhaler is perhaps one of the best roller hockey skates on the market. So, if you’re looking for a top-shelf product worthy of consideration, look no further.

The top section of Mission Inhaler WM01 is built using 3D-Lasted Curv Composite material for the quarter package. As a result, it’s lightweight, durable, and protective while simultaneously offering a comfortable and responsive fit.

Internally, Mission Inhaler WM01 uses a heat molding Grip-Fit PRO liner with CT technology, which keeps your feet in place, and improves power generation with each stride. Of course, the liner itself is also thermoforming, providing anatomical fin for increased comfort and responsive feel. In addition, the True vented tongue protects the top of your foot while allowing more airflow and comfort at the same time.

The entire boot sits atop a lightweight, full-carbon composite outsole that pairs with the HI-LO Kryptonium frame. It features a unique construction and material composition, which reduces its weight to magnesium-made frames without compromising strength or durability. What helps these skates roll are the Labeda Addiction wheels that are known for their speed and stability, especially with Hi-Lo Swiss bearings inside them.

PROS

  • Top performance
  • Increased airflow
  • Quarter ventilation
  • Great materials

CONS

  •  Pricey (but worth it)

9. Mission Inhaler WM02 Inline Hockey Skates

Mission Inhaler WM02 Inline Hockey Skates

Specifications:

  • Fit Profile: W/E (Heat Molding)
  • Skill Level: Elite
  • Bearings: Hi-Lo ABEC 9 Bearings

Mission Inhaler WM02 roller hockey skates are perfect for those looking for performance-level skates with premium-level comfort. On top of being incredibly comfortable right out of the box, these are also highly durable and offer outstanding performance for a reasonable price.

The Mission Inhaler WM02 showcases an injected tech mesh with a new quarter ventilation system. This makes the boot lightweight, protective, and durable, while the new ventilation system increases airflow and enhances breathability while skating.

Mission used a heat molding Grip liner with memory foam padding and abrasion zones. It provides an anatomical fit for better comfort and performance while also keeping your foot dry and in place. The two-piece form-fitting tongue on top of the boot also provides enhanced protection and comfort.

The bottom section features a TPU Injected outsole supporting a CNC machined HI-LO frame made of aluminum, providing a lightweight and durable setup. The frame holds two 76mm Labeda Millennium wheels in the front, and two 80mm Millennium wheels in the back, which keep players leaned on their toes, aiding speed and acceleration.

PROS

  • Lightweight
  • New ventilation system
  • Reasonable price

CONS

  • Limited fit


10.Tour Code 1.One Roller Hockey Skates

Tour Code 1.One Roller Hockey Skates

Specifications:

  • Fit Profile: R/D (Heat Molding)
  • Skill Level: Performance/Elite
  • Bearings: Bevo Swiss Platinum Race Bearings

The Tour Code 1.one is among the best inline hockey skates for those looking for a mix between performance and elite-level products. With the all-new features implemented in the boots constructions, those interested in purchasing this product are getting an elite-level skate at a performance-level price.

The quarter package is made using Tour’s proprietary Vorrac Surlyn material – a lightweight, strong, and relatively rigid material. Despite its rigidity, the material has thermoforming properties, which allow for a comfortable fit.

The first layer of the interior features an Accu-aire moisture-wicking liner that’ll keep your feet dry. Its second layer, known as H600, provides additional comfort and durability, with strategically positioned pads for extra comfort and safety.

Tour Code 1.One inline hockey skates use a Carbon Composite Matrix outsole and the Labeda Humer Eviction PRO 2 frame. It’s actually a hybrid frame consisting of aluminum and magnesium, making it lightweight and durable.

PROS

  • Great performance
  • Good materials
  • A sound air venting system
  • Hybrid frame

CONS

  • Limited fit

11. Tour Code 2.One Roller Hockey Skates

Tour Code 2.One Roller Hockey Skates

Specifications:

  • Fit Profile: R/D (Heat Molding)
  • Skill Level: Recreational/Performance
  • Bearings: Bevo Gold-9 Race Bearings

The Tout Code 2.one skates are packed with performance features and built using elite-level materials. But what makes these into the best roller

 hockey skates is their accessible price, providing you with outstanding performance without breaking the bank.

Just like on Code 1.one, the quarter package on Code 2.one is made of Vorrac Surlyn – a lightweight and durable material that provides comfort without sacrificing protection. In addition, the material is heat moldable, which helps eliminate any negative space within the boot for maximum comfort.

On the inside, the boot features the very same Accu-aire moisture-wicking liner, paired with H600 padding and an In-Step Cooling system. This combination keeps your feet dry, locked into place, and comfortable at the same time.

The main difference between the two is on the bottom of the boot – Code 2.one features a Labeda Humer Eviction PRO 2 frame. It’s made of a magnesium-aluminum hybrid, making it lightweight and durable, while the Kemistry Cyclonium wheels provide maximum grip, speed, and durability.

PROS

  • Accessible price
  • The same level of comfort as Code 1.one
  • Good materials

CONS

  • On the heavier side
  • Stiff

12. Tour Volt LG72 Hockey Goalie Skates

Tour Volt LG72 Hockey Goalie Skates

Specifications:

  • Fit Profile: W/E (Heat Molding)
  • Skill Level: Recreational
  • Bearings: Bevo Gold-9 Race Bearings

Tour collaborated with inline goalies on the design of Volt LG72 skates, loading them with the latest technologies to help the goalies remain fast and agile.

The newest feature, D-fender, is located above the first wheel and blocks your pad straps from entering your wheels, taking mobility to a whole new level. But that’s not the only improvement. The reinforced ankle stabilizer and improved lateral support provide an enhanced feel of the skating surface, contributing to better overall performance.

The interior of LG72 skates features a DryWick Quilter Comfort lining that will keep your feet dry and comfortable. It’s important to note that the boots are thermoformable and shape up to the unique shape of your foot, which only adds to the comfort aspect of the product.

On the bottom, the Tour Volt LG72 features a lightweight Predator 9, low-profile aluminum frame, combined with Kemistry wheels. These are engineered to provide additional grip for better agility while goaltending and super-fast Bevo 9 race-rated chrome bearings, which add to the skate’s top-speed performance.

PROS

  • Incredibly comfortable out of the box
  • Heat moldable
  • Accessible price tag

CONS

  • Could benefit from better wheels

13. Mission Inhaler WM03 Roller Hockey Skates

 Mission Inhaler WM03 Roller Hockey Skates

Specifications:

  • Fit Profile: W/E (Heat Molding)
  • Skill Level: Recreational
  • Bearings: ABEC 9 Bearings

When it comes to recreational-level skates, Mission Inhaler WM03 are perhaps the best inline hockey skates the market has to offer.

Their quarter package is made of reinforced true-form PU material, making it lightweight, protective, and durable at the same time. It also features a new quarter package ventilation system for increased airflow, comfort, and breathability while skating.

On the inside, the Mission Inhaler WM03 features a thermoformable liner, which provides an anatomical, close-to-the-foot feel while also wicking away moisture. The boot’s top uses a form-fitting 48-oz felt tongue for added protection and comfort.

The entire boot sits atop a lightweight TPU Injected outsole, paired with a HI-LO Aluminum frame. This lightweight and durable setup sports two 76mm Labeda Union wheels on the front and two 80mm wheels on the back, which aid agility without compromising top speeds.

PROS

  • Stiff
  • Asymmetrical toe cap
  • Aluminum chassis
  • The excellent quality quarter package

CONS

  •  The tongue has no lace bite protection

How to Choose the Best Inline Hockey Skates

Roller hockey skates come in various price points, dictated mainly by the quality and skill level. However, going out and purchasing a new pair of roller hockey skates isn’t as easy as picking up the first pair you set your eyes on. But you shouldn’t need a doctorate either.

In this section, we’ll explore different factors you should consider when purchasing inline skates. We’ll start from the one that most affects the price.

What’s Your Hockey Skill

Your skill level is one of the crucially determining factors for choosing perfect roller hockey skates. Beginners and recreational skaters don’t need the same type of skates an elite athlete would need. Here’s a breakdown of what you can expect from your hockey skates at different skill levels:

Recreational

Recreational skates are built for beginner hockey players and casual skaters looking for an affordable option. The boot, also called a quarter package, is made of softer materials than the quarter packages on more expensive skates. This results in a much more comfortable boot and outsole for beginner players that are just learning how to skate.

The downside to a softer quarter package is the lack of protection, especially when it comes to impacts from other player’s hockey sticks. A two-piece chassis, which holds the skate’s wheels, is expected at this price point, at the cost of reduced durability, especially when compared to one-piece chassis. However, these are more than enough for beginner players.

Performance

Performance inline skates are fantastic for confident players in their skating skills and are looking for added performance to hone their competitive edge. They’re best suited to players and skaters that spend 2-3 times a week skating or playing mid-level hockey.

The quarter package on these skates is considerably stiffer to increase the level of protection required by a more aggressive play. They’re usually equipped with thicker internal foam layers for added protection, providing a more comfortable feel right out of the box. The tongues are generally thicker and more reinforced, again for added safety and comfort on top of your foot.

Like the boot, the outsole is also stiffer and provides better torsional stability, allowing increased responsiveness and better overall performance. In addition, these soles are usually attached to one-piece chassis that offer better long-term durability at a lower relative weight, especially when compared to two-piece chassis found on cheaper models.

Elite

Elite-level skates are built to conform to the high standards of professional athleticism, meaning that they offer the best in terms of performance, durability, and comfort. These are best for professional-level athletes or skaters who spend more than three days a week skating or playing professional hockey.

The boots on these models are usually made of composite materials, which are the most durable and lightweight materials used for manufacturing sporting equipment. Apart from making the boots extraordinarily durable and lightweight, these materials can be thermoformed around your feet.

Thermoforming, combined with thicker and plushier internal foams, allow the skates to be custom-fitted to your feet, providing unparalleled comfort and responsiveness. Additionally, the boot’s inner section features high-end fabrics with better moisture-wicking properties that keep your feet both comfortable and dry.

The top of your feet is also exceptionally well-protected, without any cost to the comfort, thanks to the pro-level tongues with thicker felts and injected foams. The bottom of your feet is protected with stiffer outsoles with excellent torsional resistance for increased stability and better performance.

The lower section of elite-level inline skates sports a lighter chassis that is more structurally sound and provides better energy transfer. In addition, these hold premium indoor wheels with unparalleled grip for more explosiveness and stopping power, both of which are supported by the highest-rated bearings unavailable on performance or recreational models.

Fitting Your Roller Hockey Skates

Fitting your roller hockey skates is imperative if you want to squeeze every ounce of performance out of them while simultaneously avoiding foot injury or blisters. Knowing your foot length and width can help you choose the best-fitting roller skates for hockey. Here’s a quick breakdown.

Skate length

Skate length, or boot size, is the very first measurement you should concern yourself with. Inline skates usually run 1.5 (US) sizes smaller than your typical adult shoe and approximately 1 fill size down for children. So, if you’re wearing a size 10 US shoe size, you should be looking at a size 8.5 skates.

Keep in mind that these are guidelines and not rules, so some exceptions might apply. Please don’t refrain from asking a professional for help when selecting the correct skate size, as they often know a trick or two about fitting.

Skate Width

Skate width is also an important consideration when fitting roller hockey skates, as different people have differently shaped feet: some are narrow, while others are regular or even wide. As a result, inline skate manufacturers produce hockey skates of different widths, measured in letters that can belong to one of two width nomenclature systems.

The classic ranking system is C, D, E, EE (EE stands for extra-wide), while an alternative system uses N, R, W (narrow, regular, wide). Keep in mind that ranking goes from narrowest to widest and that most players fit into R or D width skates.

A perfect fit will ensure maximum comfort and subsequently maximum performance; uncomfortable and ill-fitting skates will undoubtedly affect your performance negatively. Purchasing skates that are too loose will undoubtedly cause blisters (though those are sometimes unavoidable), while narrow ones will cause pain and possibly a permanent foot injury.

Heat Molding Skates

Heat molding or thermoforming skates became standard in the early 2000s, more specifically in 2004 when Easton came up with a one-piece carbon-composite boot for their Synergy 1500C. Composite materials of the boot and inside the footbed allow the boot to be heat molded onto the hockey player’s foot, creating a custom fit.

However, before molding, hockey players should find a skate that fits reasonably well out of the box, adhering to the previously mentioned measurements. Most stores will offer to thermoform your skates for you on the spot immediately after purchase. The process involves applying heat to skates to make the boots pliable and molding them against your foot.

Professional thermoforming also offers correction of any sore zones by reapplying heat to the specific area of the boot to expand it further. This almost always excludes any kind of breaking in period, allowing for a custom fitting and incredible comfort right of the bat.

Parts of Inline Hockey Skates

Modern inline skates and their parts are made of different technical materials, like high-density plastics, textiles, composites, and high-grade metals. Therefore, we recognize four distinct parts of the skate:

The Boot

The boot itself consists of five distinct parts:

The quarter package is the central part of the boot that extends from the toe cap, around the heel, and up to the ankles. So naturally, quarter packages are produced in varying shapes and sizes to accommodate different foot types.

The tongue is usually made of foam for breathability and comfort, while their outside is reinforced with either rubber or layers of hard plastic or composite. Its role is to protect the front and top of your foot from impacts.

Boot liners are the inside surface of your skate, which features strategically placed padding for proper fitting, comfort, and protection.

Footbeds are the removable inserts on the bottom of the skate boot and are primarily responsible for comfort. They come in a variety of configurations to accommodate different types, shapes, and arches of the foot.

Outsoles are the hard plastic pieces on the bottom of the boot, which hold the frame or the wheels’ assembly.

The Frame

The frame refers to the assembly that attaches to the outsole and holds the wheels. Most roller skates have an aluminum frame, which helps keep the weight down without sacrificing durability. However, while this is the most common type of frame on the market, some players prefer something heavier on their feet, like frames made of composite materials or even titanium.

The three basic types of frames are flat frames, antirocker frames, and freestyle frames. Most, if not all, inline hockey skates use flat frames, with four identical big wheels on every axle position – which is common in fitness skates. On the other hand, street skates, also called aggressive skates, use antirocker and freestyle frames, which are entirely irrelevant to hockey.

The Bearings

Roller skate wheel bearings sit inside the wheel hub and allow the wheels on your skates to roll. Each wheel has two bearings in it, so a pair of inline skates have a total of 16 bearings. Now, keep in mind that not all bearings are made equal, and some are better than others.

Most beatings use the ABEC rating system, which established dimensions, tolerances, geometry, and noise standards for bearings to aid the classification of different types. The ABEC system includes grades 1, 3, 5, 7, and 9, and the higher the number, the tighter the tolerances are, making the bearing a more precise part. In layman’s terms, the higher the number, the better the bearing.

Keep in mind that higher-rated bearings won’t make you skate faster but will affect the quality of your roll. A better-rated bearing has less internal friction, allowing you to cover more distance than a lower-rated one while using the same amount of energy. However, higher-rated bearings are more expensive, and truth be told, you don’t need an ABEC 9 bearing on a skate whose wheels don’t exceed 4700 RPM.

On the other hand, higher-rated bearings tend to wear down less and often last longer. So, weigh your options.

Wheels

There are different types of wheels, as they can vary in size, hardness, and shape, so it’s best to choose wheels that suit the surface you’re skating on.

When it comes to size, smaller wheels provide maneuverability, which is perfect for hockey, while larger wheels provide a smoother ride and more incredible top speeds. For example, indoor skate wheels usually measure 62mm (approximately 2 ⅖”), while outdoor ones measure from 60-80mm (2 ⅜” – 3 ⅛”).


Final Thoughts

In conclusion, the best roller hockey skates should be lightweight, durable, and as comfortable as your own skin. Our top pick, the Bauer Vapor 2X Pro Roller Skates, satisfy all three criteria, making them one of the best roller hockey skates on the market. Mission Inhaler WM01 Roller Hockey Skates follows as close-second, offering incredible performance and comfort. For those on a budget, Alkali Revel 5 Inline Skates is the best budget-friendly skate on our list.

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