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Feet wobbly in skates

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05-11-2012, 06:52 PM
  #1
hlaverty06
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Feet wobbly in skates

Is this normal or is something wrong with my skates or stance?

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05-11-2012, 07:04 PM
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HarbinIceHogs
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Originally Posted by hlaverty06 View Post
Is this normal or is something wrong with my skates or stance?
How long have you been skating for? This is a common person when a person is just learning and your ankles aren't strong enough yet. It is different muscles which are used when skating.

I would suggest doing up your skates hella tight, sometimes I have seen people tape the top of their skates. Often a precursor is the skate are too loose.

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05-11-2012, 07:12 PM
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ponder
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New skaters generally have trouble controlling their ankles, and are all wobbly on the ice. Try to keep your ankles more stable, and to bend at the ankles and the knees, in this kind of a stance:


As opposed to the standard, straight legged, wobbly beginner stance, which is more like this:


With that being said, your skates COULD be an issue too. Are they decent hockey skates that you got at a legit sporting goods store, or more of a super cheap variety? Can you describe the fit of the skates? Ideally skates should be a snug fit all over your foot, with little negative space (other than being able to wiggle your toes up and down a bit). Length-wise your toes should be just feathering the toe caps when you stand up straight, and should just pull back from the toe caps when you get in a bent knee, hockey stance. In terms of width and general volume, your foot should feel snugly held all over, as if someone has wrapped their hands around your feet and is squeezing just a touch, but they shouldn't feel overly squeezed.

When your skates are tied, you shouldn't be able to lift your heel off the footbed at all, your heel/ankle should be very firmly locked in place. If you can move your heel significantly, then your skates don't fit you properly. Also, while we're on the topic of tying skates, you want them fairly tight, sort of aggressively snug, but don't go crazy tight or your feet will kill. Waxed laces make it easier to tie your skates decently tight, and they'll slip/loosen less during a game too. Here's the level of tightness you should be aiming for with skates that fit properly:


If you have decent skates (doesn't have to be too special, but at least low end skates from a legit brand like Bauer, CCM, Easton, etc.), and they fit as I described above, then it's likely just your technique, something you'll improve on with practice. If your skates don't fit properly, or are cheap $30 pieces of plastic that use velco or ski boot buckles instead of laces, then go get some proper skates that fit.


Last edited by ponder: 05-11-2012 at 07:20 PM.
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05-11-2012, 08:38 PM
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CunniJA
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Check your rivets and make sure they're all in there properly too. If not, get some copper rivets on that.

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05-11-2012, 08:39 PM
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Sounds like they aren't tight enough.

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05-11-2012, 09:04 PM
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AIREAYE
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Originally Posted by CunniJA View Post
Check your rivets and make sure they're all in there properly too. If not, get some copper rivets on that.
What? Do you have any idea as to what coppers do?

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05-11-2012, 09:10 PM
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Do off-ice workouts, some of your muscles aren't worked up yet. Specifically balance workouts. Try 1-leg squats, 1-leg pushups, etc. You'll be forced to engage balance and core muscles. If you want to incorporate equipment, a bosu-ball and it associated workouts will help.

Make sure you skates are tightened up too. No perceptible wobble between your leg and skate, but not so tight that your foot goes numb or falls asleep.

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05-12-2012, 02:04 AM
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kr580
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I'm totally assuming here but you're just starting out, aren't you? If the skates are tight and the blades are on there fine I'd assume you're not putting enough weight on the skates when you're skating. Bend your knees and get lower. The more weight you put on them by sitting down the more they're gonna dig into the ice and grab it. I had that problem big time when I first started and it was because I wasn't bending my knees and allowing my edges to grab onto the ice.

Just try getting lower. It's a weird feeling but it helps. And if I totally assumed incorrectly I apologize. Good luck figuring it out, whatever it is.

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05-12-2012, 02:21 AM
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Trl3789
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I'm totally assuming here but you're just starting out, aren't you? If the skates are tight and the blades are on there fine I'd assume you're not putting enough weight on the skates when you're skating. Bend your knees and get lower. The more weight you put on them by sitting down the more they're gonna dig into the ice and grab it. I had that problem big time when I first started and it was because I wasn't bending my knees and allowing my edges to grab onto the ice.

Just try getting lower. It's a weird feeling but it helps. And if I totally assumed incorrectly I apologize. Good luck figuring it out, whatever it is.
Not the OP, but today was day two in my attempt to see if I can skate, and i made a conscious effort to try to get lower. While the skates didn't wobble on me, my ankles are pretty dang sore already (need to get those muscles going). If your skates fit, trying to get lower does makes a significant difference.

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05-12-2012, 02:25 AM
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AndyPipkin
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Always wondered this too. Lots of great info in here.

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05-12-2012, 03:18 AM
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phillyt45
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Originally Posted by kr580 View Post
If the skates are tight and the blades are on there fine I'd assume you're not putting enough weight on the skates when you're skating. Bend your knees and get lower. The more weight you put on them by sitting down the more they're gonna dig into the ice and grab it.
How would bending your knees put more weight on the skates? Do you mean how your weight is distributed on the blades?

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05-12-2012, 08:08 AM
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hlaverty06
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Hey guys,

I went skating last night after reading some of this and it could be a combo of all three. I get rental skates (looking to invest in a pair this week), may not have been tight enough and its my 8th week of skating about 3 times a week

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05-12-2012, 10:27 AM
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ponder
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Originally Posted by hlaverty06 View Post
Hey guys,

I went skating last night after reading some of this and it could be a combo of all three. I get rental skates (looking to invest in a pair this week), may not have been tight enough and its my 8th week of skating about 3 times a week
In that case it probably is a mix of technique and poorly fitting skates. Get your own skates for sure, having a pair that fits well, and simply having the same skates on every time you hit the ice, should make a major difference to your rate of improvement. You don't have to break the bank, at a good shop you should be able to get a decent pair of skates for around $150-200, or maybe even something passable for around $100 if you really don't have much money to spend. Try on a tonne of skates, make sure you get the ones that fit best, and go for a skate from one of the major brands (Bauer, CCM, Easton or Rbk). Check out this thread, where AIREAYE wrote a good guide on skate fitting and other skate topics:

http://hfboards.hockeysfuture.com/sh....php?t=1099867

Also, as mentioned earlier, get waxed laces. You don't need to go crazy when tightening them if the fit is good, but you should make them nice and snug. People will sometimes try to use overly tight skates to try to compensate for a poorly fitting skate, but you just end up cutting off the blood supply to your feet, and your feet get cold and cramped which makes skating difficult and uncomfortable.

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05-12-2012, 06:16 PM
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phillyt45
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Originally Posted by hlaverty06 View Post
Hey guys,

I went skating last night after reading some of this and it could be a combo of all three. I get rental skates (looking to invest in a pair this week), may not have been tight enough and its my 8th week of skating about 3 times a week
I went skating for the first time in forever two weeks ago with rentals and was having a similar issue. My feet were wobbly and were pronating the whole time. Basically there was no stiffness to keep my ankles supported. It made them really hard to even walk in. Well, I just got back from skating for the first time with my own skates and it was like 100 times better having a stiffer boot / better fit- so getting some skates that fit should help a lot.

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05-12-2012, 08:49 PM
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kr580
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phillyt45 View Post
How would bending your knees put more weight on the skates? Do you mean how your weight is distributed on the blades?
I'm not sure what the science is, but it works. I'm guessing when you stand upright your weight is mostly on your heels which doesn't let the blade grab much. When you bend your knees you end up putting more pressure on the ball of your foot which locks the blade into the ice for a little more grab. Or something like that.

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05-12-2012, 09:36 PM
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Wooty
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Rental skates are awful.

Whenever I take a new skater ice skating, I find that going over how to tie the skates is pretty important. Getting your foot to sit comfortably on the insole, over the blade is very important.

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05-13-2012, 05:12 PM
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make sure those skates have a proper amount of ankle support too, especially if you're a taller/bigger guy.

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05-14-2012, 09:03 AM
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AcrossThePond
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Always wondered this too. Lots of great info in here.
Likewise

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05-14-2012, 01:02 PM
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bigbadbruins1
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If tying your skates tighter doesn't work try taping around your ankles. it will keep the skate tighter to your ankle, giving you more support and rigidness. Eventually as you become stronger and a more advanced skater you will be able to take away the tape and have no issues.

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05-14-2012, 02:45 PM
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bozak911
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When I put my skates on for the first time (as a 36 year old) I had no clue how to get the laces tight enough. It seemed that whatever I tried, just wasn't good enough. The OEM laces (only word analogue I can think of) just didn't grip enough to stay put.

I switched to Gorilla Laces and things got a lot easier.

One thing I also learned was that I need to slam my heel into the skate relatively hard once I have them laced up most of the way and tight. After that, I pull some of the slack that happens out of the laces and then tight tie them. For a while, I laced all the way up, but now that I am a bit more comfortable on them, I don't lace the last eyelet.

Having the stability in the ankle when you are starting is also very key.

RE: Loose Bladeholder... The easiest way I can determine when the blade holder gets a little loose is by walking on them a bit on the mats. If you hear a clicking, check the blade holder.

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05-14-2012, 03:12 PM
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Jarick
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If you're a healthy adult and can't get your skates tight enough, they're too big.

But you said "rental skates", so I won't blame you at all. Once you get a pair of decent skates, not even nice ones, but decent skates in the $100-150 range that fit properly, you'll probably feel a lot better.

Howie Meeker used to say there are no weak ankles, just bad fitting skates. Call it ankle support or heel lock, whatever you want, but that's key. If your foot moves around inside the skate, you will lose some degree of stability, speed, power, and efficiency. Just a matter of how much you are losing.

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05-14-2012, 05:10 PM
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AIREAYE
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Quote:
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RE: Loose Bladeholder... The easiest way I can determine when the blade holder gets a little loose is by walking on them a bit on the mats. If you hear a clicking, check the blade holder.
It is most likely the steel as opposed to the holder. See if tightening the steel helps.

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