This article is the last of a three part series where the different components of a hockey skate are discussed in great detail. The intention of these articles was not to provide a list of all options for each component, but rather as a reference point when a review of hockey skates are discussed in future articles.
In the first part of the series, which can be read here, we focused on a topic which is common to both ice hockey skates and roller hockey skates, the boot. The second part in the series we turned our attention to the components specific to roller hockey skates. That article can be read here.
In this last article, we will focus our attention to the components specific to ice hockey skates. These are:
- Steel Runner
The holder is attached to the outsole of the boot and, as the name implies, is used to hold the steel runner. The steel runner is the steel portion, or the blade, of the skate that makes contact with the ice.
Unlike roller hockey skates where there is as much an emphasis put on the wheels and bearings as the boot itself, for ice hockey skates there is more of an emphasis on the boot. The reason isn’t that they are less important, but for the recreational ice hockey player, changing the holder and/or steel runners isn’t something that should be done by a novice and therefore is a lot more involved. For that reason, many people won’t ever have to replace or upgrade the holder or runner which came with their ice skates.
Most mid-level ice hockey skates are equipped with holders and runners which, for recreational use, are adequate and would provide satisfactory experiences for novice to experienced players.
Because lower end ice hockey skates (usually less than $75-$100) are made with more inexpensive , brittle materials, the holders have been known to crack with the stresses a player will put on them as they become more experienced. Add that with the lower quality boot and you’ll probably find that your hockey experience will be not a pleasant one.
As discussed in the first part of this series, the hockey skate, be it ice hockey or roller hockey, will probably be the single most important piece of equipment you will purchase, so it’s worth the extra effort to make sure you get the right skate for you and your level of play.
This completes our overview of the hockey skate. If you have any question or additions please feel free to comment. Also, don’t forget to subscribe using the subscribe button above to make sure you get the latest updates on local hockey recreational events and news.