Inline skating, also known as rollerblading, is a safe outdoor activity that students can enjoy at home or school because it has minimal risks. It is a multidisciplinary sport that strengthens the glutes and burns lots of calories like running. If you are interested in learning how to inline skate, this article will guide you accordingly.
Is It Hard to Learn Inline Skating?
Learning inline skating is a huge milestone for most individuals. However, it is not as hard as you may think. Unlike traditional roller skates, inline skates have wheels positioned behind each other. Therefore, skaters should be more cautious to avoid losing stability.
Inline skating is one of the easiest sporting activities a person can perfect after 1- 2 hours of rolling and learning to maintain stability on the skates. If you are a fast learner, you only need to have the basic knowledge of keeping balance, accelerating, changing direction, stopping the skates, and feeling comfortable. Of course, perfection is a gradual process that depends on every individual’s ability, although for a first-time skater, confidence is the most critical aspect.
Learn How to Inline Skate Properly
The following steps will help you learn how to inline skate.
Have the appropriate equipment
The first step to learning inline skating is to familiarize yourself with the necessary equipment. Therefore, before practicing, you should have the appropriate inline skating gear. As a beginner, you need a good pair of skates, wrist protectors, and pads to protect the knees and elbows. Other essential materials include a helmet and gloves for additional safety. It is crucial to select blades that support your ankles and provide comfort around the feet. For novice skaters, it is advisable to purchase skates with wheels ranging from 80 to 90 millimeters.
Learn how to maintain stability on the inline skates
The best skating experience requires a surface with high friction. Grass carpets and open fields are perfect places to learn and practice inline skating before going to pavements. These surfaces are safe to set the pace since they are not slippery and can support skating even on rainy days. Preparation involves engaging the core and bending down for stability. You should always position your shoulders slightly in front of the hips. The idea is to help you find balance because more body weight lies on the heels. Furthermore, it is advisable to practice the stages of halting and spinning on a flat area before heading to a long path or pavement.
Learn how to balance your body
Once on the pavement, you should move forward by swiftly transferring your body weight from left to right and finally center to find a stable position. The next step involves using your legs’ force to push to the sides so that you alternate your feet as your move forward. At the same time, the foot initiating the next movement should be under the body while the other spreads slightly outwards to enhance stability. It is normal to be scared at first. However, you should be confident enough to stand and avoid leaning on nearby surfaces. To achieve a smooth flow, you should be in an athletic posture and bend the knees.
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Master spinning techniques
You should master the following tricks to control your movement during inline skating.
- A-frame turn. The A-frame turning technique is one of the initial ways of teaching individuals how to spin. A beginner should widen the feet to exceed the shoulders and hips’ width. The broad posture helps to position the skates effortlessly.
- Parallel turn. After mastering the tips above, you should learn a parallel turn. For this technique, a skater should begin by crossing their feet, meaning, one foot should be in front of the other, resembling a scissor, and all toes should face outwards. The next step involves spinning the skates so that the feet face the direction where you are moving. A parallel turn is a bit terrifying compared to an A-frame rotation. Nonetheless, it is swifter.
- Crossover turn. After mastering the A-frame and parallel turns, you can shift to a crossover turn, which is more complex, although necessary for every skater. The technique helps skaters and hockey players to move freely. It is one of the most professional spin methods because an individual moves the feet and does not lose balance or reduce speed. However, if you find this trick strenuous, you can perfect the initial ones.
Practice safe halting when rollerblading
The following skills will help you to control and stop skating shoes:
- Heel brake. For novice skaters, using the heel brake is the most efficient way to come to a halt. The technique involves stretching your legs slightly apart and positioning the feet in a scissors-like shape while gradually moving one foot forward. It is advisable to avoid straightening the legs before crossing them to prevent slipping. Afterward, you should raise the front foot to apply brakes and loosen up.
- T-stop. You can attempt the T-stop or the plow step once you master the heel brake, which is less advanced. The technique involves moving one foot behind the other to create a T shape. The shoulders and hips should be in a square-like position as you slow down.
- Plow stop. For the plow stop, you should spin your toes and move the body weight from left to right. However, it is worth noting that this is not the fastest way to stop rollerblading.
Inline skating is a perfect full-body workout and a fun sport for students and adults. If you are a first-time skater, hopefully, this article on how to learn inline skating will be your ultimate guide. As a beginner, you will probably see the activity as a scary monster and wonder how you should balance your entire body weight on a set of wheels. Therefore, this resource offers step-by-step guidance to ensure you do not get overwhelmed as you familiarize yourself with the skates and learn skills that will help you become an expert.