Whether you’re a figure skater or a hockey player, your ice skates are one of the most important pieces of kit for your sport; so it’s important to know how to look after your skates to keep them in peak condition.
We’ve put together our top 5 ice skate maintenance tips, so that you can enjoy your favourite skates for years to come.
1. DRY YOUR SKATES
After a session on the ice, your blades will have a build-up of snow and moisture on them. While your blades are rust-resistant, they are not rust-proof; so storing them without completely drying them first will result in rust on the blades.
To avoid this, wipe them clean with a dry cloth once you’re off the ice, leave them in the open air to get to room temperature, and then wipe them again to dry any condensation that may have formed.
If your blades do become rusty, we can grind this off in most cases; however, this will shorten the lifespan of your skates.
2. USE BLADE COVERS
When you’re not skating, it’s important to protect the edges of your blades as they’re prone to chipping and denting from grit and stones on the floor, which will dramatically reduce the lifespan of your blades and often mean you’ll need to replace your boots.
Using plastic guards when walking around the rink protects them from this, but make sure you completely dry your blades as any moisture trapped in the guard will cause rust.
Fabric blade covers are also available, and are a great choice for storing your ice skates in as they will wick away any moisture left over. However, they are not suitable for walking around the rink as they will tear.
3. KEEP YOUR SKATES SHARP
Skate sharpening is a vital part of your maintenance routine, as dull blades can impact their performance and even lead to injury.
We recommend getting your blades sharpened after every 20 hours on the ice; although this can depend on factors such as your body weight, skating style, and the quality of the ice you’re skating on. A general rule of thumb to follow is that if you feel like you are sliding out, it’s time to get them sharpened.
Our friendly Blademaster trained team can help you to determine the best hollow depth for your skating style and preference; simply book your slot and a member of our team will be in touch.
4. LOOSEN THE LACES
While it’s important to make sure your laces are tightened properly while you’re skating, it's just as important to loosen them fully to take your skates off.
By making your skates easy to remove, you’ll minimise wear on the boots from kicking the back of your skates. This is especially important for hockey skates, as tendon guards can snap from this kicking action, leaving the skates completely unusable.
5. INVEST IN A SKATE BAG
Not only does a bag mean that you can carry all your essentials to the rink easily, but you can also keep your skates safe and secure in transit.
It’s important to choose a bag that provides enough space for other belongings, has a strong frame to protect the entire boot, and also provides enough ventilation to minimise the risk of moisture building up inside the bag.
If your bag is due for an upgrade, take a look at our range of bags available for both figure and hockey.
Your ice skates are an investment and are vital to your sport; but keeping them in top condition doesn’t have to be difficult! With a few simple accessories and a couple of post-practice care steps, you can keep your skates looking pristine and performing at their best for many years.