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Are hockey skate rentals good to use to learn how to skate?

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06-03-2012, 11:02 AM
  #1
christianbk
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Are hockey skate rentals good to use to learn how to skate?

Long time lurker, first time poster.

My brother and I are turning 30 this summer... and we decided after watching & loving hockey for however many years that we were going to finally learn how to play and join a league this Fall.

We actually played a fair amount of roller hockey during college; nothing too demanding nor really any organized games. Just skate time really.

So we went to public skating at the local rink yesterday, rented hockey skates, and began our quest to learn how to ice skate over the summer. After some time, we started to get a decent feel for the ice - rollerblades definitely aren't a 1-1 feeling to ice hockey skates, but I feel like we were better than someone who had zero skating of any kind experience.

Now my question: we found that the rented hockey skates might have possibly been hindering us? What I mean is: when we skating, we noticed that the blades tended to have \ type of contact on the ice. I would have to literally push out on the outside of my foot to get the blade at a | type of straight angle on the ice. I definitely couldn't skate while pushing on the outsides of my feet so my blades had constant contact on the ice in that \ angle.

We watched some guys who had their own skates and obviously knew what they were doing and it seemed like their skates had a | type of straight angle on the ice when they skated.

Reading through the beginner's gear guide on this forum (AWESOME btw, great stuff), I'm thinking that I might shell out some money to buy some skates so I can learn on proper, good hockey skates. Good idea? Or can someone truly learn how to skate on rented hockey skates?

Also - am I correct in assuming that the skate's blade shouldn't always be at a \ angle when skating? I'm talking at all times, too - even just gliding around they were like that.

Thanks! And sorry for such a long-winded post - we are really excited to do this and I want to ensure that we learn how to skate properly and we're not being held back by renting hockey skates.

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06-03-2012, 11:12 AM
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poppop
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Buy your own skates!

every pair of rentals I have had probably have never been sharpened and they are just horrible

Find a pair you like and buy them. Don't even bother with rentals.

Also how much will you spend on rentals? Why not buy a pair this way after you learn you don't have to spend more money.

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06-03-2012, 11:12 AM
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Dustin Peener
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The rental skates probably aren't sharp enough, or you haven't tied the laces up tight.


Last edited by Dustin Peener: 06-03-2012 at 11:18 AM.
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06-03-2012, 11:13 AM
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ean
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I would consider buying (and getting fitted) some skates between 150-200. Theyd be better than rentals, and theyd be yours.

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06-03-2012, 11:27 AM
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Gino 14
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Make sure that whatever skates you buy you have them sharpened at a place where the folks running the machine know what they are doing. Even your own skates will suck if they aren't sharpened properly.

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06-03-2012, 11:29 AM
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Consider rental skates the prostitutes of hockey. Its better to have a sexy wife. Get your own pair of skates.

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06-03-2012, 11:37 AM
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SaintMorose
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If you are serious about playing hockey or even know you are going to get out skating every month you'll probably be better off in the long run buying a pair.

I'd find a store with people who know their stuff about various brands of skates so you can get a pair that fits you properly and you are going to enjoy wearing (after a week of breaking them in )

I believe I got my bauer vapours for under $140 on a sale which I liked and I've always been a fan of bauer's fit (You'll probably find yourself really liking one or two brands much better than everything else). With your first pair you really don't want to go over-board (or be too cheap).

As for skating keep them done tight and have strong ankles. Bending them out while skating takes all the power from your stride. Probably best thing to do is find a league that offers coaches to adult players that have never skated before (or took a 15+ year break etc...) not sure if that available in your area or not but called in and talk to people about their programs until you find one that you'd enjoy

Hope that helps!

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06-03-2012, 11:49 AM
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Dellstrom
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You're better off just buying skates. It's worth it. Look for some sales, I got a great pair of skates worth $200 new at $80 on clearance. If you want, if there's a used sports store, you could buy some cheaper. They're likely already broken in. I really don't like used stuff, though. If you really want to play, buy some. It's worth it.

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06-03-2012, 12:07 PM
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addybojangles
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Really good advice here - just wanted to say, from another beginner looking to play his first adult league hockey soon - this is awesome.


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06-03-2012, 12:34 PM
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Wilch
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Rental skates are the absolute worst.

If you have the cash, buy your own.

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06-03-2012, 12:35 PM
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noobman
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I learned to play on rental skates and saw my skating improve tremendously when my parents finally bought me my own pair of sharpened skates.

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06-03-2012, 12:41 PM
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mikitas donut
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Rental skates are awful. They are beyond generic and not made well, in addition to not being maintained properly.

Definitely get your own if you're for sure gonna skate a lot. Go to a hockey shop and try on several pairs because different feet fit certain brands better.

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06-03-2012, 01:19 PM
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beth
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Those rental skates get so abused, you totally need to get your own. I recommend used skates that fit well for your first skates. Then after you've figured out the basics and what you like/don't like about those skates, you can shell out some $$$ for some perfect ones.

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06-03-2012, 01:26 PM
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Frankie Spankie
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ean View Post
I would consider buying (and getting fitted) some skates between 150-200. Theyd be better than rentals, and theyd be yours.
This -- Depending on how much you go on rental skates, it'll add up quickly. A $150 pair of skates isn't too expensive and will be a lot better than any rental pair you try out. Besides, if you're serious about playing hockey this fall, you'll need your own pair by then anyway. You can get a cheap pair and then after a couple years when you know if you'll be playing regularly for a long time, you can invest in a nice pair. My first decent pair was a $200 set of CCM Vectors. They were great for starting but fell apart after a couple years, then I went and got a pair of the MLX skates when they were 50% off and absolutely love them. But I didn't put down any big money until I knew I was going to be playing hockey for at least another 10 years.

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06-03-2012, 01:29 PM
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christianbk
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Thanks all for your replies! Looks like I'll be looking to visit my local (local in Portland / Vancouver = one place really) hockey shop and try on some skates. Then, after I know what fits we well, I may go looking for some used ones.

Thanks!!

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06-03-2012, 01:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beth View Post
Those rental skates get so abused, you totally need to get your own. I recommend used skates that fit well for your first skates. Then after you've figured out the basics and what you like/don't like about those skates, you can shell out some $$$ for some perfect ones.
Good advice. I'd go with this.

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06-03-2012, 02:26 PM
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In contrast to all the people saying that rental skates are the scum of the earth, and they do have a point, but rental skates aren't that bad if the rink that owns them actually takes good care of them.

That is unlikely, however, and you are better off with your own skates, which will break in for your foot specifically and fit better overall.

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06-03-2012, 04:44 PM
  #18
Stickmata
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Quote:
Originally Posted by christianbk View Post
Thanks all for your replies! Looks like I'll be looking to visit my local (local in Portland / Vancouver = one place really) hockey shop and try on some skates. Then, after I know what fits we well, I may go looking for some used ones.

Thanks!!
Don't buy used skates. Get a decent, lower to mid range skate fitted properly and then baked to fit your foot. Fit is the most important thing for you at this point. If you buy used skates, you will likely compromise and wind up wasting money in the long run.

And, since you're an absolute beginner and don't really know how a skate should fit you, make sure you get fitted by someone who really knows what they're doing.

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06-04-2012, 11:04 AM
  #19
Badger36
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Rental skates are pretty much the worst ever because they arent molded to fit your feet.
If you are serious about it, Id suggest buying a somewhat low-end model of hockey skates (spend about $200) get them baked and have fun.

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06-04-2012, 01:33 PM
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phillyt45
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I just started getting into practicing skating about a month or so ago and the first time I went I used rentals and had the exact same issue as you. There was basically no stiffness / ankle support to keep them straight up (I am a big guy too so it made the problem even worse). It made it pretty difficult to practice anything other than just gliding, and I'm sure it is bad for your ankles to skate like that. I could barely even walk in them without them folding over. I bought some new stiff skates that fit and they make a huge difference.

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06-04-2012, 04:08 PM
  #21
Hank4Hart
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Consider rental skates the prostitutes of hockey. Its better to have a sexy wife. Get your own pair of skates.
this post doesnt get enough praise

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06-04-2012, 09:15 PM
  #22
SCritical
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One of the girls on my team keeps forgetting her skates for training and has to wear rentals. It's so disruptive, everytime she does a crossover she's on her butt.

Sooo...yeah, if you want to learn edge control, and you'll have to if you want to play hockey, best get your own. It will make a huge difference, and I think its better to learn in one pair of skates. People I've seen learn mostly in hire skates (it's hard, but it can be done) then switch to proper skates seem to have trouble adjusting

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06-04-2012, 10:55 PM
  #23
FANonymous
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stickmata View Post
Don't buy used skates. Get a decent, lower to mid range skate fitted properly and then baked to fit your foot. Fit is the most important thing for you at this point. If you buy used skates, you will likely compromise and wind up wasting money in the long run.

And, since you're an absolute beginner and don't really know how a skate should fit you, make sure you get fitted by someone who really knows what they're doing.
I 2nd this. When I first started, knowing nothing about skates, I tried to go the cheaper, used route. The first pair of skates I bought was waaay too big. The people there had no clue how to fit the skates and they also had no clue how to sharpen them either. I had to buy another pair 2 weeks later because the skate wasn't even close to being properly tight.

If you go to a hockey specific store and you're honest with the salesperson there they should be able to help you out. Tell them your situation, tell them your budget and they'll try to hook you up with all the skates in that price range to help you find the one that fits best.

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