Image of ice skates

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How to put on your skates

The skates used for ice skating are made up of a leather boot and a steel blade. The boot is high at the front and back, and the foot should fit firmly inside, especially at the heels. The blade, which is between about 3 and 4 millimetres thick, has a considerable curve, and at the front there is a saw-shaped section called the toe pick, which is designed for use in jumps and spins, but should not be used for stopping. The skates should be the same size as one’s regular shoe size, and at the most just one size too large. The bootlaces should be tied tightly, especially along the top of the foot. The upper part should also be laced tightly, but not too much.

You will know that your boots are fastened properly if you cannot move your heels inside them.

Advice for skating

The first thing you should do is get used to wearing skates, so advance slowly while supporting yourself on the barrier, start gaining confidence in yourself and try not to wobble too much as you find your balance. With your feet in parallel and not moving, use one foot to push off and shift your bodyweight onto the other. The pushing skate should move a little behind you and the two skates should come back together and so on successively, with both feet moving simultaneously. The sliding skate should move straight, but you should also make sure you keep your hips and back straight. Try to only make small steps.

Practical advice

The head and body should be straight.

The arms should be a little open and ahead of the body.

Push with the base of the blade and not the tip.


The gloves are there to stop your hands from getting hurt when you fall. If you lose your balance, let yourself fall onto your hands and try to make sure that your head doesn’t strike the ice. Don’t try to get from the sitting position, pushing with your hands, that’s almost impossible. What you have to do is get onto your knees. Lift one of the knee up and support the skate in the ice. Put both hands on the knee that you have lifted and support yourself to give you the strength to get up.


WEDGE: With your feet in parallel as you slide, try to slowly turn your knees in towards the centre of your body. The skates will also twist and stop by themselves. As you do so, lean your body slightly backwards.

LATERAL: Turn your body a quarter circle and with your bodyweight on the leg you are going to use to stop, bend both of your legs and push the skates in parallel.