Most Recommended Skating Gear
Welcome to the Roller Skate Dad Resources section. My hand curated list of the skating products, tools and websites that I strongly recommend.
I have personally read, watched, bought, used and/or tested every recommendation on this page.
If you are a beginner, then my top pick for you are the Sure-Grip Boardwalk roller skates. These skates come in men’s sizes 4-13 and come with soft outdoor wheels that are great for both indoors and outdoors.
The Sure-Grip Boardwalks come in 7 different colors which gives you a color for every taste and style. This skate comes with a Rock nylon plate, adjustable rubber toe stoppers, and ABEC-3 skate bearings.
The Sure-Grip’s Boardwalk wheels are one of my favorite wheels for rough outdoor surfaces. These wheels are 78A in durometer and are 65mm in diameter – perfect for indoor or outdoor skating.
BladeRunner Advantage Pro & BladeRunner Phoenix
My top pick for the best rollerblades for beginner and intermediate skaters are the Rollerblade Bladerunner. These affordable rollerblades are great for the whole family. They are very budget friendly and come from one of the leading manufacturers of inline skates in the world – Rollerblade.
The Rollerblade BladeRunner Advantage Pro XT is for women and men. And, the BladeRunner Phoenix is an adjustable inline skate for both boys and girls. Even kids as small as 2-3 years old can fit into the Phoenix!
The BladeRunner Advantage Pro for adults comes in women’s sizes 5-10 or men’s sizes 7-13. It has a padded performance liner that is comfortable. It also has great ankle support with it’s triple security system of laces, velcro strap and buckles. It’s a great roller skate for adult beginner skaters. The adult skates are not adjustable.
The kids BladeRunner Phoenix is an adjustable inline skate that comes in 3 different size ranges and 2 different colors. Adjusting the size is done with a push of a button. It’s very easy and great for those little kids with growing feet.
For even more rollerblades and inline skates recommendations, check out my Best Rollerblades page. For a comparison of the different types of skates out today, check out my Comparing Rollerblades vs. Roller Skates vs. Inline Skates article.
Roller Skate Wheels
Want all of the breakdown on my wheels recommendations? Be sure to checkout the Top 10 Tips for Buying the Perfect Roller Skate Wheels.
My Favorite Artistic / Hard Wheels
I really love these wheels. They are my go to wheels for most of my regular rink skating. They are super thin and hard. I’ve even speed skated during sessions and some speed skate practices in them – although they are super loud if there is no music playing :-). They are super slick (which I like) making it very easy for me to spin and slide. Again, they are not for everyone, but they are one of my favorite sets of wheels that I have ever used.
My Favorite Speed Skating Wheels
By far my favorite speed skate wheel. I love the aluminum core of these wheels and the durometer. They are perfect for speed skating on a hard wood floor with plastic. A lot of the competitive speed skaters at my rink swear by these wheels and use nothing else for competition. I personally have a pair and love them. My pushes never slip with these wheels and I can both hug and crossover on the turn without sliding too much while still getting a solid hard roll. Remember, you want as hard of a wheel as you can handle on your pushes and around the corner to help you maintain a top speed.
My Favorite Outdoor Wheels
I use these wheels a lot when I skate outdoors. They are soft and easy to skate over rocks and small pebbles which I have a lot of on the roads around me. I’m not a huge outdoor skater as I live in Texas where it is usually 100 degrees Fahrenheit most of the summer, but when I do go outside I use the Pulse. The biggest reason I purchased these is because most of my indoor wheels are super hard and they just don’t work well on the road. You may be able to get by with a harder wheel if you are on a tennis court, outdoor basketball / sport court, but if you are on a road or sidewalk with potential small pebbles, you need a soft wheel or you will face plant.
Roller Skate Bearings
My Favorite Bearings
If you are looking to replace your current roller skate bearings, I personally use Bones Super Reds bearings in all of my roller skates. I find that they are both cost effective (about $60 for a set of 16 – remember you need 16 bearings for roller skates – 8 wheels x 2 bearings / wheel). And, they are one of the better bearings on the market. They are metal bearings and they are pretty easy to keep clean and maintain, too.
My Favorite Bearings for My Outdoor Wheels
If you are more of an outdoor skater or just want a bearing that will last longer and give you a smoother ride, then I would go with Bones Ceramic Super Reds bearings. They are considerably more expensive, but some people really prefer ceramic because they require less lubricant and give a smoother ride. However, they are usually around 2-3x the price. I’ll do a further breakdown of metal vs. ceramic bearings in a future article for you.
My Favorite Ankle Protectors
I use my Ezeefit Ankle booties every time I skate. They help to insure that I don’t get any blisters or scrapes around my foot and ankle. I really love them. It took me multiple attempts with many different products to find this solution. I wrote an entire article about the different products I tried and how I landed on the Ezeefit. It’s called the 7 Ways to Protect Your Ankles While Breaking in New Skates.
My Favorite Helmets
I use the neon green helmet below. However, this black helmet is the more popular version of the 2 helmets. Both of them have a special sweat liner on the inside that makes them quite comfortable. The inside on this helmet is actually a red liner with an outside black exterior. The chin straps is also adjustable.
Here is the neon green Triple 8 helmet that I use whenever I am speed skating or roller skating outdoors. This helmet is the same as the black one, however, I like this one better because of the color. When I’m at the rink, no one has a helmet like this one, so I see that as a plus. I like to stand out. More importantly, when I’m outside, this helmet is super easy to see – even as it starts to get darker towards sunset. It’s an extra safety feature, in my opinion.
My Favorite Elbow Pads
These are the elbow pads that I have used in the past when skating outdoors and doing speed skating practice. As I’ve mentioned on the podcast, I’ve injured my right elbow two times, so these are a new staple for me now whenever I go skating (even session skating).
My Favorite Wrist & Palm Guards
Again, like my elbow pads, I usually wear these wrist & palm guards whenever I’m outdoors skating. Especially when I’m going onto Texas asphalt and riding the huge hills of Lago Vista. These are great for protecting your palms and your wrists. I don’t usually wear these indoors, simply because I don’t fall all that often, but if you are a new speed, derby, hockey skater or just a new skater and want to protect your wrists, then you can’t go wrong with these guards.
My Favorite Knee Pads
I have worn knee pads a few times. When I first started speed skating practice, I used to always wear them. I sometime wear these when I’m outside and I’m going down the hills in my neighborhood. It’s a good idea to protect your knees when you’re outside. You just never know when a piece of debris will be on the ground. It only takes one rock or one tree branch to send you flying – especially if you’re hill skating.
My Favorite Mouth Guards
Much like my knee pads, I wear my mouth guard when I’m outdoors and I’m hill skating. In the early days, I did wear this mouth guard during speed skating. It’s really comfortable and it has the ability to shape around your teeth. In that way, shaping it allows each mouthguard to be custom for each skater. I used to wear a mouthguard when I played football in middle school. This one was much nicer than I remember those ever being.
My Recommended Booty, Tailbone & Hip Pad
I bought this more as a joke for my wife. She doesn’t roller skate very often, and I wanted to get her something that would give her confidence to skate, even if she fell down. It totally works. The pair I bought her didn’t fit me, but I tested them out by sitting and falling on them and they are very well padded.
Roller Skate Tools
I keep this tool in my skate bag. It a nice little socket set that easily fits in a bag. I use this to tighten / loosen axle nuts. It’s a good all around tool.
This tool has two sockets permanently attached to the handle. The third socket can be detached and any socket can be added onto the end of it.
If you are looking to protect the front part of your boots from scrapes and dings, then take a look at these toe guards from Bont. They easily fit all skate boots and easily stay secure when you meld them in with your laces.
Be sure to check back frequently as I am consistently updating and adding new resources to this page.