When you are shopping for hockey skates in Chicago there are three major aspects to keep in mind:
Hockey Skates Price
When choosing which pair of skates to buy, the cost is an important consideration. Hockey skates are among the most essential pieces of equipment you will purchase. However, not all can afford a pair of skates that is of the highest quality.
Before you start looking, it is recommended to determine your budget in order to narrow down your search to models within your price range. At that time, you can evaluate the various features available and which are most important to you. You may even find that you can purchase an item that includes what you need at a price significantly under your budget.
Once you've established the price range you are able to afford then you must take into consideration the size. For you to perform your best on the ice you'll need shoes that are as comfortable as possible. If you have narrow or wide feet or high arches then you'll require shoes that are comfortable and meet your needs.
It's important to know that, just like shoes, sizes of hockey skates can differ between brands. A "bite bar" is a particular substance that keeps the laces from slipping. This makes the boot as snug as possible and gives you more control on the skating ice.
Also, you should consider how often you will make use of them. If you play only occasionally, then advanced features could not be necessary to you. If you play on an organized hockey team or intend to pursue playing at the next level, you'll likely want skates that have advanced features in order to avoid the risk that a less expensive skate could hold you back on the court.
Here are the main things you should consider in relation to the amount of use the skates will be subject to:
Features: If you're looking to spend a lot of time on the ice, or if you want to take your hockey to an elite level, premium skates may have advanced features.
Comfort is key. The more you skate, the more comfortable they are. This will directly impact your performance.
Stiffness: Skates that are stiffer allow you to have more control over your movements and permit a more efficient transfer of power when you're skating.
Padding: Padding plays an essential role in how the boot will fit. It also helps protect your feet from flying pucks during an athletic game. If you're planning on putting your skates to work and playing in hockey games frequently it's a vital aspect to consider.
Steel: Steel that's stronger lasts longer and holds its edges more effectively, however, you generally will need to have your blades sharpened regularly, regardless of how hard the blade of steel is.
How to Measure Hockey Skate Size
A device that is specific to the brand is the most efficient way to measure for skates as sizes may differ from one brand to the next. If this isn't possible it's possible to get an idea of the size by going 1 1/2 to 1.5 inches smaller than your shoe size. Be sure to put on the socks you plan to skate in (thin socks are recommended) and then slip on the skate and push your toes all the way to the front of your skate.
Close the laces tightly through the eyelets that are first to ensure that the skate is secure near the toe. For your arch to move, tie the eyelets following them looser. For securing your heel to the skate, tighten the laces through the remaining eyelets.
If the eyelets are not spaced 1 1/2 to 2 inches apart consider getting a wider or narrower skate. Properly fitted skates should allow the user to stand straight and have their toes "feathering" the skate's front toe cap. The skate should push the toes in a slight direction toward the rear of the cap whenever the skater bends his knees.
Skates that have an "D" or "R" with the size are considered standard. the letters "W," "E," or "EE" indicates that the skate is wide.
If you're buying for a junior or youth player, add one half size to account for expansion. A properly fitting youth hockey skate should allow the user to slide one finger behind your heel. Any bigger can cause blisters on feet and a break in the sides of your boot. Adults should lie on their feet and insert your heel on the boot's back.
How do I break my hockey skates in?
Wear them around your home and wear skates! for a couple of hours. Your foot should lie flat inside the boot. The foot shouldn't be placed into the arch, heel or toe. The skate should not permit your heel to move or lift. This will help break them in and cause less discomfort the first time you use them.
If you're stuck in crunch time and need the skates dismantled in half the amount of time, there's the process known as "Heating Ice Skates." Heating your ice skates is a process where skates are baked in a special oven to ensure the perfect fit. This procedure adjusts the hardened sides and upper part of the boot, fitting into the specific shape of the player's foot.