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Choosing the Right Skate

How to pick out the right type of skate for you

The first step is to determine the type of skating that you want to do. 

  • Roller Rink skater
    Thousands of people each week head to the rink to roller skate, exercise, listen to music, and socialize with their friends. If you are primarily going to be a rink skater, we recommend you buy a "Speed Skate" or "Indoor Skate". Speed Skates have "low-cut" boots, whereas Indoor Skates have "high-top" boots.
  • Outdoor Fitness/Fun skater
    Children and adults alike really enjoy skating outdoors. Also, roller skating is a great way to get into shape and stay into shape. If you are going to skate outdoors we recommend you purchase either an "Outdoor (Quad) Skate" or "Inline Skate".

 Different types of skates

speed-skate.jpg Speed Skates
These skates are meant to go fast and because of their design they are very popular skates. Speed skates feature low cut shoes (boot) that fits just like tennis shoes. The low cut design helps with going around corners. These skates are very popular because of the freedom of movement that they provide in the ankles thus being popular for jam (dance) skating and, of course, speed skating. These skates also feature speed style wheels and bearings (part that makes your wheel spin) that enables skaters to skate faster and longer.
outdoor-skate.jpg Outdoor Skates
These skates are simply meant for the outdoors. Outdoor skates come in either low top or high top boots and the wheels are specifically designed to skate outdoors where the ground is not as smooth. For the most part, the only difference between an indoor skate and an outdoor skate are the wheels. Outdoor wheels are softer and more absorbent which allow for a smoother ride over "not so smooth" surfaces.
indoor-skate.jpg Indoor Skates
Indoor skates (sometimes referred to as Artistic Skates, Recreational Skates, or Traditional Skates). These are traditional style skates that are for those wanting to skate in a skating rink, artistically dance (kind of like ice skating but instead of a blade they have wheels), and those that want to rhythm skate. These skates feature high boots that allow for good control while performing spins or jumps. The wheels are more narrow which allow for easy turning and maneuverability.
roller-derby-skate.jpg Roller Derby Skates
The sport of Roller Derby dates back to the 1930s and is quickly gaining in popularity. These skates are designed to take the abuse that is experienced by participating in the sport. Roller Derby Skates require durability but also a skate that can get up to fast levels very quickly as well as hold through tight turns.
Kids skates are skates that are designed for the young skaters. They look cool but at the same time they designed so that they will not go as fast as other skates. Plus, these skates are designed for the wear and tear that kids put on their skates!

Inline Skates
There are 3 main types of Inline Skates: Recreational, Racing, and Roller Hockey. 

Recreational Skates
Also known as fitness skates, these skates are designed for the skater who wants a good pair of skates to exercise in, usually outdoors. The shoes (boots) are high top which offers excellent foot and ankle support. These skates are also very comfortable so that the skater can skate for longer periods of time.

Racing Skates
Racing skates are skates that were designed to go fast, simply put. The shoe (boot) is designed so that it fits as close to your foot as possible allowing you the least amount of wind resistance. The wheels of these skates are easily interchangeable to allow the skater to skate indoors or outdoors.

Roller Hockey Skates
These are skates that are made for those playing the sport of roller hockey. Roller hockey is a very popular sport, especially among youth and young adults. These skates were designed to hold up to the abuse due to the nature of the sport.


Difference between a "Quad Skate" and "Inline Skate"

Quad simply means that the skate has 4 wheels, 1 in each corner of the bottom of the skate. Quad skates have always been considered the "traditional" skate and this is what most skaters rent when they go to their local skating rink. Quad Skates are great for those wanting to learn to skate, fitness skate, perform skating tricks, jam (dancing on skates), play roller derby, skate outside, artistic skate (type of dancing on skates), or just those wanting an all-around rink skate.
Inline Skates are very popular skates for those wanting to skate outdoors as well as those wanting to speed skate. Inline Skates feature wheels that are, well, "in line" with each other. Inline Skates have anywhere from 3 to 5 wheels per pair of skate.

Difference between an "Outdoor Skate" and "Indoor Skate"

The difference between an outdoor quad skate and an indoor quad skate are the wheels. The outdoor quad skates feature wheels that are soft which allows for a smoother roll on the non-smooth surfaces such as sidewalks & streets. The indoor quad skates feature wheels which are typically harder than outdoor wheels. A harder wheel will give you a smoother roll on very smooth surfaces like those at skating rinks.

Tips for buying skates as a gift

Buying skates as gifts make an excellent choice! We know that the person you give it to will have fun while roller skating. Here are a couple of tips...

  • Find out what the receipient's show size is. Basic rule of thumb is that the shoe size is the same as their skate size. Don't worry, if the skate doesn't fit they can exchange for a different size.
  • If you are buying a skate for a child, the best place to look is the Kid's skate section. All skates in sizes J7-4 are in this section.
  • If you don't know what type of skate to choose, feel free to call us at 888-987-5283 or message us at the bottom right of this screen.

Sizing Help

Finding the right skate size

#1 Rule
Buying roller skates is just like buying a pair of shoes. Basically, your shoe size will be the size that you will need for your skates. We have skates that range from 7J (J stands for Juvenile or Child) all the way up to adult size 16. Pay special attention to the sizing information given for each skate on the product detail page. Certain skates come in only mens sizes so ladies will need to adjust their sizing accordingly.

Tip for buying skates for children

For children it might be better to purchase one size larger for your child so that they can grow into the skate, that way the skates can last a longer time. A lot of skaters have also worn thick or double socks until their feet have fully grown into the skate.

Measuring your foot

It may be a good idea to measure your foot so that you can be sure that you will be getting the most accurate size skate for your feet. You will need a piece of paper, a pencil/pen, and a ruler or tape measure.
To measure your foot stand with your back/heels against a wall and stand on the piece of paper and mark the tip of your longest toe. You will then measure the distance between the marks (in inches) and then use the tables below to convert those measurements into the right skate size for you.
Measuring Tips:
  • Wear the same style of socks that you will be wearing while skating;
  • Measure both of your feet and choose the skate size that fits the bigger foot;
  • If you are measuring by yourself, it is best to take the measurements while sitting. If someone is measuring for you, then standing up is best;
  • It may be easier to tape the paper down to keep it from moving.
  • If you measurements are between two sizes it is best to move up to the larger size.
Please note that sizes can vary among different skate types and brands of skates. More accurate skate sizes are available on certain skate product pages on our site.

Size conversion charts

Once you have determined what your foot size is in inches, you can use the charts below to find out your skate size.
Boys/Girls Size Conversion
Inches CM US Sizes Euro Sizes UK Sizes
5.5" 14 7J 23 6
5.75" 14.6 8J 24 7
6.125" 15.6 9J 25 8
6.5" 16.5 10J 27 9
6.75" 17.1 11J 28 10
7.125" 18.1 12J 30 11
7.5" 19.1 13J 31 12
7.75" 19.7 1 32 13
8.125" 20.6 2 33 1
8.5" 21.6 3 34 2
8.75" 22.2 4 36 3
9.125" 23.2 5 37 4
9.5" 24.1 6 38 5
9.75" 24.8 7 39 6
Ladies Size Conversion 
Inches CM US Sizes Euro Sizes UK Sizes
8.1875" 20.8 4 35 2
8.5" 21.6 5 35-36 3
8.875" 22.5 6 36-37 4
9.25" 23.5 7 37-38 5
9.5" 24.1 8 38-39 6
9.875" 25.1 9 39-40 7
10.1875" 25.9 10 40-41 8
10.5" 26.7 11 41-42 9
10.875" 27.6 12 42-43 10
Mens Size Conversion
Inches CM US Sizes Euro Sizes UK Sizes
9.25" 23.5 6 39 5.5
9.625" 24.4 7 40 6.5
9.9375" 25.4 8 41 7.5
10.25" 26 9 42 8.5
10.5625" 27 10 43 9.5
10.9375" 27.9 11 44 10.5
11.25" 28.6 12 45 11.5
11.5625" 29.4 13 46 12.5
11.875" 30.2 14 47 13.5
12.1875" 31 15 48 14.5
12.5" 31.8 16 49 15.5