If you’re looking to get your groove on, then check out the cool trend of jam skating! But what is it and how do you get started?
There are different types of this particular style of skating, but one thing’s for sure; it’s super fun and a great form of exercise! In fact, it’s so much fun you won’t even realize you’re actually exercising!
Want to know more? Keep reading to find out about this fun skating style and how to do it!
What is jam skating?
So what is jam skating? It’s a mix of different dance styles, all done on roller skates! It also involves elements of break dancing, modern dance, and even gymnastics all performed to catchy tunes, usually hip hop.
Jam skating is also a sport and competitions are held regularly. Skaters can present their own routines either in groups or as solo performers.
In jam skating competitions, there aren’t many rules or judging criteria which gives everyone much more skating creativity. Jam skaters are judged on their tricks and all-around performance.
Do you need jam roller skates?
In jam skating, you need a different type of roller skate boot. Usually, jam skates are cut lower at the ankle to provide better flexibility.
They’re also made from lighter materials to allow skaters to perform stunts and tricks easily and smoothly. However, years ago roller disco skaters would don high-cut boots with a toe stop.
It wasn’t until the 1980s that people started wearing speed skate boots that were cut lower. They also had jam plugs instead of toe stops.
What are the origins of jam skating?
The origins of the jam skate sport are a little unclear but it’s widely believed to have been started in the Great Lakes and Florida region.
Jam skating got its style from traditional disco roller skating, but it’s also been influenced by breakdancing, ice skating, and gymnastics.
In its early days, jam skating was almost an underground movement led by teenagers and young adults. Each skater would “battle” against others with dance routines, in the same way that breakdancers do.
What are the different styles of jam skating?
Power moves involve full-body rotations and spins that make it look as though the skater is defying gravity! Power moves include:
- Back spins
- Head spins
- Air flares, and many more
These power moves are a display of agility, speed, strength, and control and are incredibly fun to watch!
The performers also need a lot of upper body strength to support them while their bodies create circular moves and momentum.
Some power moves are also inspired by martial arts and breakdancing.
As the name suggests, this skate style focuses on the feet. The performer will demonstrate foot tricks, moving along the floor smoothly and effortlessly.
Foot tricks include 2-step, crazy legs, and the grapevine.
Shuffle skating or rexing is when the skater moves with all 8 wheels on the floor, forward or backward in time to the beat of the music. You’ll usually see skaters going in a counter-clockwise motion.
Is jam skating difficult?
Because jam skating is more complicated than regular roller skating, it’s important to understand the basics. There are certain skates you need to wear and different techniques and styles you’ll get to learn.
Unfortunately, jam skating isn’t easy. The advanced skaters make it look easy but you’ll find out pretty soon that it takes years of practice to become that good. You’ll probably start with wobbly legs and the shakes that will inevitably result in many falls.
But the important thing is to not give up and keep practicing. The movements of jam skating will feel really weird at first and it takes time and consistency to develop balance and muscle memory. A few good tips to start you off include:
- Start skating on a carpeted surface, that way you can stop easily in poses to get a feel for them.
- Go to your local skating rink and practice falling safely. Remember to always wear knee and elbow pads, scraped knees and elbows are not fun!
- Practice your falls by dragging a foot behind you to stop. As you start to slow down, bend one knee and put your arms out in front of you. Your hands and knees should make contact at roughly the same time.
How do you jam skate?
Before you start skating, make sure you’ve got the proper skates so you can execute moves easily and find your rhythm. The skate boot you choose should be well-fitting and comfortable.
Also, be sure to warm up before each session! Especially the lower body as it will prevent pulled muscles. There are tons of Youtube tutorial videos where you can get more info and learn fun, easy tricks to get you started!
Interested in Learning More about Jam Skating?
If you are interested in learning more about this awesome form of skating, check out these 2 YouTube channels. Both skaters are really good and have a lot of excellent step-by-step videos:
- Deez Skates – Channel & Jam Skating Tutorial Playlist
- BFunkphenomenon – Channel & Jam Skating Tutorial Playlist
There is also a Udemy course on Jam Skating for under $30. It’s called Roller Skating Magic. 🙂