Lots of people ask us what is easier - roller blading or roller skating?
While many people expect quad roller skates to be easier to learn than inline skates (or roller blades as they are commonly known), the truth is that many children and adults find inlines to be very easy.
If you've always wanted to try inlines but thought it would be too hard, keep reading.
Compare Skates vs. Blades
While it's true that roller skates have a wider base of stability, the roller skate plate itself is fairly short and extends from just under the toe to the heel.
This can result in falls forward and backwards while the skater is still learning.
It also means that there is more of a chance of wheel clipping (when the wheels on one skate clip the wheels on the other skate, usually resulting in a stumble or fall).
When you're learning to skate in quad roller skates it is important to separate your feet which can be difficult for children, especially when they have such little legs!
In comparison, inline skates have a longer frame that usually extends past the toes and behind the heel.
This makes them very stable and less prone to wheel clipping.
Oh Hi. How Do I Stop This Thing?
Most inlines have a high ankle to support the ankle and a heel brake that is either already fitted or can be installed.
This makes stopping in them pretty simple.
Just gently extend the foot fitted with the brake - toe to sky - and the heel brake pad engages with the ground, causing the skater to stop.
Most quad skates do not come with a heel brake but instead have toe stops on the front of the boot.
You can use these toe stops to stop by dragging one toe behind or by turning around and engaging them whilst backwards.
This is a little bit trickier than the heel brake on the inlines.
(Yes, there are other more advanced ways to stop on both skates that require a bit more skill like t-stops, ploughs, hockey stops and power slides.)
Ready to Roll!
The challenge with inline skates is to build your ankle strength as balancing on one line of wheels does put pressure on your ankles and feet.
The truth is BOTH types of skates - inlines and quad roller skates - are hard at first as they require balance, core strength and leg strength.
Over time and with practice you will build up these muscles and that will make any skating a lot easier.
We often find that if you skated on inlines as a kid then you will find inlines easier to learn on as an adult and vice versa for quad roller skates.
If you're still unsure and you've never tried inlines before then head to your local roller rink and try both types.