The part in which your foot goes into is called the “boot.” They are called boots because they are normally high cut shoes. The reason for the high cut design is to provide support to the ankle of the wearer. Some boots have a lower cut than the others in order to provide flexibility for ankle movement. Lower cut boots are famous amongst skates that are used for speed skating.
The boot is made of different materials, all of which depend on the type of skating the wearer will do. For those who are more active, or enjoy speed skating, there are boots reinforced with carbon fiber for support. Recreational skaters, on the other hand can enjoy soft and comfortable boots. Another variation is the amount of padding inside the boots. The padding can be shock absorbent, heat protection or simply for comfort.
The frame is what holds the boots and the wheels together. It is very important that their material can withstand the work that they will get into. Hardened plastic material can be used for recreational skates. These kinds of skates can be found in toy stores or department stores.
The frames for extreme skating and speed skating will need harder material. Carbon fiber and extruded aluminum are the common choices for these kinds of skating. Inline skates equipped with carbon fiber frames are much more expensive, though they provide more flexibility. Due to this, they are much more favorable for extreme skating.
The bearings of a pair of skating shoes are important because they are responsible for the continuous and smooth spin of your wheels. They are the ones that withstand friction and the heat that comes from the spinning wheels.
In the market, the quality of bearings is rated from 1 to 11, 1 being the best and 11 being the worst kind. They are judged with the type of metal that they are made of, their precise sizing and endurance. Bearings are not only used in inline skates, they are also used in different machines that have spinning functions.
There are bearing with special features like being dirt-proof, water-proof, and nicely lubricated. These qualities and a good performance are usually offered by trusted bearing manufacturers such as SKF and NTN.
The wheels are made of a durable kind of plastic (polyurethane) these days. Before, and still used by a few skate shoes today, they were made with a combination of rubber and plastic. The reason why the material was changed because they old material wore down too quickly, heated up much more and had too much rolling resistance.
The size of the wheels depend on the speed the skater needs, The general rule is that the bigger the wheels are, the higher the speed the skate shoes can achieve. The setup of the wheels also differs from one another depending on the kind of skating it is made for. The setup is the arrangement of wheels and combination of different sizes of wheels in a skate shoe. Some setups make it easier for wearers to speed up while some allow versatile actions.
Most skating shoes allow wearers to stop using heel brakes. This is the patch of rubber that can be pressed on the ground. This braking method is used by most recreational skaters. However, heel brakes are not used by speed skaters and freestylers because they stand in the way of performing certain tricks and achieving high speeds. Instead, they use the T-stop method. This is when a skater turns and slides to a halt after making a perpendicular turn.