One of the most important things to consider before and during skating is the ability to stop. proper control of your skates and the ability to stop under any situation will give you the confidence to skate safe without the risk of injury. Keep in mind that the faster you go the longer it will take for you to slow down or stop. knowing more than one way to stop or control your speed is beneficial and highly recommended. Please find 5 different stopping techniques below:
V-stop: The v-stop, is similar to the t-stop, but you do not bring your skate all the way back to the “t” formation. you only need to bring it out to the side at a 45 degree angle. Keep in mind that as the right skate in the diagram is at a 45 degree angle to the left skate, the skate itself should also be approximately at a 45 degree angle to the ground, allowing the skate to drag (slide) more efficiently. At first, simply apply moderate and even pressure to the skate, just practicing the position and balancing. As you become more comfortable, begin to apply more stopping pressure.
T-stop: The t-stop is a popular inline skating technique and is a bit more advanced maneuver than the v-stop, so start off at a slow speed and work your way up. It is recommended to perfect the v-stop prior to attempting the t-stop. One skate remains straight while dragging the other behind to form a “t” formation. Notice the skaters right hand is extended forward and inside to counter-balance the right leg being dragged behind.
Wedge stop: This stopping technique resembles a skiers snow-plow. First, form a wedge shape with your skates, pointing the front of the skates inward. It is more common to leave one skate moving straight forward, while wedging the other skate inward at approximately a 45 degree angle to the direction traveled. It is also important to angle the skate frame about 45 degrees from the ground. The closer the frame comes to the ground the more the wheels will slide. you can control your stopping power by adjusting the angle of the skate to the ground.
Reverse t-stop: This maneuver is considered advanced and more difficult to perform. As the skater hops up, he will actually turn his right skate around 180 degree’s, or backwards to the direction traveled. at the same time, the left skate is turned 90 degrees, perpendicular to the direction of travel, creating a “t” formation. The skater is leaning his weight uphill and away from the skates. the left skate is angled at about a 45 degrees to the ground. Once again, the more you angle the skate frame towards the ground, the more the skate will slide.
Hockey stop: Probably the most difficult stopping technique. the skater quickly hops up, unweighting his/her skates, and turns both skates 90 degrees (perpendicular) to the direction of travel. Just the right angle to the ground is required to keep the wheels sliding. As you begin to slow down, you may stand more upright, adding more stopping power to the skates.
You can go up hills in the same way that you would on conventional skates.
Many users prefer to use ski poles which really help deliver more power to the ascent, not to mention providing a full body work out. Usually, you can skate straight up the hill, depending on its steepness.
You can even ascend the steepest of hills by traversing the hill upwards. Skate at about a 45 degree angle to the fall-line, zig-zagging your way up the hill.
Wheel and bearing maintenance
Not all wheels are created equal, and not all wheels are made for your skates or skating style.
How to know when you should change or rotate your wheels
Rotate your wheels
Uneven wheels not only perform poorly, they’re also unsafe to skate on. Be sure to rotate your wheels as soon as they show signs of wear. Proper maintenance of your skates, wheels and bearings is essential to fun and safe skating.
Change your wheels
New wheels will dramatically increase the performance of your skates. You may be accustomed to skating on old wheels, but don’t be fooled. New wheels are smoother, grippier and increase performance significantly.
How to choose the right wheel for you
Urethane: Specially formulated urethanes are specific to surfaces and uses. be sure to choose the right formulation for your needs.
Durometer: The durometer or hardness of a wheel is measured from 72a (ultra soft) to 100a+ (very hard). Softer wheels are better for grip and a smother ride, while harder wheels last longer and are often faster.
Size: The size of a wheel is measured in mm’s (millimeters). Smaller wheels are slower and used predominately for aggressive street skating. Larger wheels are, mostly, faster and used for recreational skating and racing.
How to know when you should clean or replace your bearings
The best way to improve your skating is to improve your bearings and wheels. Bearings are the engine of your skates and often neglected because you can’t see them. If your bearings, sound or feel worn, do something about it — It’ll increase your skating speed, and make your skating improve significantly.