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Learn-to-Skate Questions

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09-25-2013, 11:16 AM
  #1
Zeke14
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Learn-to-Skate Questions

I signed my son (2 years old) up for a learn-to-skate program through a local youth hockey team and had a couple questions.

1) Obviously he'll need skates and a helmet, but what other equipment is required/recommended?

2) How much will I be expected to participate in this kind of program, do I need to get skates that fit? Is it an issue at this age if my skating is questionable at best (I realize I'll eventually have to take lessons in order to help out at practices when he gets bigger).

Thanks in advance.

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09-25-2013, 11:50 AM
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Chrisinroch
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I like having little kids padded up so they learn that falling is no big deal. Elbow and shin/knee pads would be great, but fit is gonna be a problem even if you wear 'em over clothes. Good luck

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09-25-2013, 11:54 AM
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PK16
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I think it may be rink dependent. When I started my son, I put him right into a learn-to-play clinic as it is essentially a learn-to skate anyway, for those who can't skate. The advantage was that he had all of the equipment on so if he fell there wasn't any issue. I think this is a reason for why he accelerated so quickly (i.e. no fear) and has consistently played up levels. In answer to your question, I would ask the rink or instructor putting on the clinic.

In terms of your participation, it is also probably somewhat rink dependent, but if you did not want to participate, my guess is you probably would not need to. I run our learn-to-play clinics, and we always have plenty of instructors available to participate, though we never discourage a parent that wants to participate with their child.

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09-27-2013, 11:39 AM
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SCBruCrew4
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I signed my son up now two years ago when he was four. Same boat as you. I decided to buy through "Pure Hockey" their starter "kit". It came with everything for a beginner but for a discounted price. And it doesn't hurt to have the equipment just in case.

As for you and your ability, unless you WANT to be out on the ice I wouldn't worry about it. If he's just starting out, you'll most likely be there strictly to help him gain his balance and pick him up when he falls. Now what I did was opposite, I had an experienced skater teach my son as I was iffy on my own. The reason why I say this is a viable option is it allows your son to feel confident in himself when to you not being there. He is 2 and I know this is young and he may get upset so it really comes down to what YOU think as his father is the correct thing.

To sum it all up, I'd put him in the pads (shins and elbows at a minimum) and you decide what's best as his parent on whether or not you should be out there with him.

Best of luck!

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09-27-2013, 11:59 AM
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AIREAYE
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I'll only chime in on gear:

At his age and given what he's doing, get him used skates that have decent support that are his size NOW. Do not get any larger than perfect sizing in anticipation of growth because you do not want any risk of his foot sliding around causing rubbing/blisters etc. Better to spend the money every few months than have any chance of him complaining, where, at 2, is enough to make him not want to skate anymore!

Helmet should be snug (can augment with foam inserts or by him wearing a touque underneath) and you should make sure he has a cage that is snug on chin as well.

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09-27-2013, 07:33 PM
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goodriddance628
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I just started my son a couple weeks ago in a program and he is 3, I got him a helmet, gloves and elbow pads, the skates are supplied with the class and are not hockey skates I talked to some of the instructors and they recommend not to use hockey skates when the kids are just starting to help them with balance and using their ankle strength the say give him time to actually learn balance and getting comfortable on the ice before moving to hockey skates, I do want to get him a pair of hockey pants he fell backwards a couple times and thats a pretty hard hit to take on the butt a few times a skating session. One thing I noticed with him during the class is it's a little over whelming for him with all the other kids but he's getting more comfortable with each session, after the class I do skate with during the public session and he seems more confident when I'm out there with him

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09-28-2013, 01:48 AM
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Fanned On It
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goodriddance628 View Post
I just started my son a couple weeks ago in a program and he is 3, I got him a helmet, gloves and elbow pads, the skates are supplied with the class and are not hockey skates I talked to some of the instructors and they recommend not to use hockey skates when the kids are just starting to help them with balance and using their ankle strength the say give him time to actually learn balance and getting comfortable on the ice before moving to hockey skates, I do want to get him a pair of hockey pants he fell backwards a couple times and thats a pretty hard hit to take on the butt a few times a skating session. One thing I noticed with him during the class is it's a little over whelming for him with all the other kids but he's getting more comfortable with each session, after the class I do skate with during the public session and he seems more confident when I'm out there with him
A lot of the skating instructors at my old rink (who were mostly figure skaters) would try to get the kids to start out on figure skates but I kind of thought that was counter-productive if the kid was going to end up playing hockey anyway... might as well learn on what you're going to be using. It's not like there's a huge advantage to starting out on figure blades as opposed to hockey blades. In my mind, whatever you start out on is going to feel more natural then switching at some point you know?

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09-30-2013, 11:46 AM
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goodriddance628
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fanned On It View Post
A lot of the skating instructors at my old rink (who were mostly figure skaters) would try to get the kids to start out on figure skates but I kind of thought that was counter-productive if the kid was going to end up playing hockey anyway... might as well learn on what you're going to be using. It's not like there's a huge advantage to starting out on figure blades as opposed to hockey blades. In my mind, whatever you start out on is going to feel more natural then switching at some point you know?
Makes sense and I actually questioned the instructors pushing the figure skates if my son keeps an interest in skating I'll pick him up a pair of hockey skates

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