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01-01-2011, 11:31 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Country: United Kingdom
Posts: 89
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Skate advice for a hapless rookie Englishman

Apologies in advance for a possible long post, it's been a long struggle to find a pair of skates that fit me, so i've greyed out the non-essential blurb!

So, where do i start?

I'm 23, from England, and have always been interested in ice hockey. I don't really know why, but perhaps it's got something to do with not having the proper opportunities to do it in this country and not living very close to a rink when growing up - so going ice skating only happened twice in my life until i was an adult!

I'm currently at university and have the intention of skating once a week to learn better and perhaps training with the uni team, but i won't be playing any rec/competitive games any time soon. I can skate to a moderate speed, but my balance is poor and technique needs a lot of attention.

As you may have guessed, i'm looking for a great pair of skates that will hopefully see a lot of use for a couple of years until i can decide how much i want/can afford to get into hockey. My specifics are:

Height: 5'4''
Weight: 10 stone 6 (~145 lbs)
Foot size: 7/7.5 (i have odd feet)
Preferences: I don't like my toe touching the toecap of the skate - not sure if it really should or not, but i've heard it's down to preference as long as your toe isn't hurting

I went to the only LHS anywhere near my hometown the other day to try skates on and the only ones that fit me quite comfortably were the Easton Synergy EQ1's in a size 8. There was no width description, but by checking Hockey Monkey online, i think the entry level skates are measured in D.

Now this is where it gets complicated...

I've had my eyes on getting a pair of Mission Fuel 90 or 120 AGs for a while now, because they're in my price range of <100 ($160) due to my LHS trying to get rid of all their leftover Mission stock. And luckily these are the only models they have left anyway.

There are two main problems:

1. They only have limited sizes remaining and they'll soon run out.
2. The company no longer has their remaining Mission skates in the shop itself, but they are trying to shift them online, which means i couldn't try them on for fit.

The ones available to me are:

90 AG: Size 7D 8E
120 AG: Size 7D 8D 8EE

The guys in the shop are around my age and have played hockey a while, saying that Mission are likely to fit closest to Eastons, so i'm using that as a guide to judge which Mission size to buy. From what a guy told me at hockey practice, Eastons are usually a more narrow in fit than other brands and i read somewhere on these forums that Missions are quite narrow too - is that true?

I know i shouldn't buy skates without trying them on, but because they are a complete bargain from my LHS, seeing as they're still $100-200 + hefty import tax if ordered from the US, i feel like i should attempt to get a pair if i possible. I can return them if they don't fit and only have to forfeit the postage price, but that will cost me enough to only want to risk it once before settling for the EQ1s if they don't fit.

So the advice i'm really hoping to get from you guys is some insight into which pair and which size i ought to get based on my foot size. Most of the skates i tried on that were the same size as my foot size (7) usually rubbed against the toecap at the front or outer side, or hurt on the arches or just felt completely uncomfortable. Hopefully i can get some general advice too as i'm sure plenty of you have many years of hockey/skate-buying experience!

Again, sorry for the massive post, but hopefully you can see it's all relevant and why i'm a bit stumped with what to do. Thanks in advance for any help or advice you can give me!

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