So im new to playing hockey and when I go to my weekly hockey class the coach keeps telling me i need to tie my skates tighter, he even showed me a method to make it tighter on the ankle, my question is that is the best way to make my skates super tight, do I need to tie them a certain way or I heard waxed laces are good (but dont know what size I would need to buy), and also should my shin pad be on top of my skate flap. Any advice would help!
I tie my laces in 2 phases, the"warmup" phase, where I tighten the skates just enough so as not to fall, but to give my feet about 15-20 minutes of time to adjust to being in the skates.
When I'm ready to start serious drills or a scrimmage game, I tighten them tighter, in the method #2 below; First Laura Stamm's method as per her book, then mine:
1-bottom third of eyelets moderately tight
2-middle third of eyelets tight
3-top third of eyelets loose to allow leg to bend forward
1-first 2/3 of eyelets medium tight with little give on the laces
2-top 4 eyelets very tight
While tying, I keep my leg straight out so that the ankle is as deep in the boot as possible. This allows me to ensure that the ankle is locked in as tight which is the key to being able to secure a snug, tight - but not uncomfortable - fit.
I use a skate key because after a while the Graf wax laces will lose some of their stickiness, so its the only way to pull them tight.
Also, I wear the shin pad over the tongue, but keep the shin strap on the bottom part loose so there is plenty of room to bend my foot forward. I use A&R velcro shin straps to keep the shin pads in place. I still see people, especially the long-time players, using shin pad tape, which I don't really get, but I suppose they're just used to it.
Last edited by nystromshairstylist: 04-01-2010 at 10:37 AM.
Are you hitting your heel against the floor to lock your foot and ankle in place as you tighten? Also, you want the bottom of your shinguard to be as close to the tongue of your skate as possible without restricting movement or getting in the way (you really don't want to take a shot to the shin where it is exposed!). Whatever you do, don't tape your ankles since this will make your ankles rely on the tape for support and can actually weaken your ankles.
Making sure your heel is snug has been the biggest thing I found. Also, don't have the bottom 2/3 very tight. Before I switched to wax, I cinched in the top laces very tight. Now that I switched to wax, I don't pull em down as hard, but still tight.
From power skating, the instructor said that it's important to have those top laces tight to support your ankle. Also, wrapping laces around the ankle with modern skates was a no no that would only loosen things up anyways.
The way skates are built these days, the loop around doesn't help. Back in the day it might have. Modern materials around the ankle provide the support, the laces just need to be done up properly. To paraphrase my instructor, it looks cool but it won't help you. And when you start movingyour ankle as you skate it'll loosen your laces even more as your leg pushes on the loop.
Get your heel (esp. the back) as snug as possible to the back of the boot. I watched a Youtube video that mentioned it and had a "Oh, right!" moment as I forgot. So I started making sure the heel was as snug and tight as possible to the back by stomping the heel before lacing up. Made a huge difference to pretty much every aspect of my skating. Better control and power.
Compared to having any wiggle room around the heel & ankle, it's night & day. Like comparing floppy sandals to good fitting running shoes.
It's all about the heel & ankle area nice and snug (without cutting off the circulation or being overly uncomfortable), IMHO.
I use plain laces and like them, I tighten a second time after my foot warms up the skate as I call it. I just tighten the top 4 eyelets worth of lace on the second tighten.
I should try waxed laces .... I do not recall every trying those. One problem I have is they do not sell skate lace lengths that fit me around here. I use a 130" + if possible. A 120" leaves a little bow which I hate.
I bought some on Ebay this week actually. The laces that came with my Bauer Vapor 11.5 size skate measured almost 140". I measured it after removing them.
Those were also plain laces and not waxed.
One kind of lace I know I hate already is a nylon type lace, the lace stretches too easily while playing with an elastic type action.
If you try waxed, get Graf laces. I've been through about every kind of waxed lace lately and have come to the conclusion that Grafs are the best. Some dont have enough wax, some are too much, some are too thick and some too thin. Grafs are juuuust right.
I had taken my yellow Graf laces out since I was sick of people asking me if I thought I was Ovechkin. Couldnt find anything but yellow Grafs around here so tried Elite, A&R and some others I cant even remember name of.
The yellow Grafs went back in tonight and screw what other say cause I like them.
Wax laces are pretty good to keep them snug in place, but you have to be able to tighten them first. Also, if you are fairly new it may just appear that your skates are not tight enough if your ankle muscles have not developed.
To help tighten your laces you can use your legs. Push out with your leg/foot and pull back with your hands. This way you get opposing forces, that might help you get them a bit tighter
How old are your skates? I had the same problem when I bought my roller skates but after a little while it got a lot better.
I just can't tie my ice skates properly. I have to admit that I bought some cheap CCMs (since I don't hit the ice that often) which may be the reason for my problem. I have Bauer roller skates so I guess I just fit better in Bauer skates...