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Inline Skating: The Basics

Skating, biking, and hiking are Liz's exercises. Calisthenics? Going to the gym? No way. It has to be exercise that is playtime.

Inline skates offer a fun way to exercise.

Inline skates offer a fun way to exercise.

A (Very) Brief History of Skate Styles

In the beginning, there were roller skates. I'm talking about the old metal skates that clipped and strapped onto regular shoes. Most of us above a certain age began with these skates. They did not work well on sneakers, so much to the dismay of our mothers, we'd strap them onto our school shoes. Fasten the ankle strap, then crank in the toe clips with your skate key. The skate key was your most valuable possession. You could not skate without it.

Then came shoe-skates. These were also around at the same time as the metal ones, but they had hard composition wheels attached to high boots like ice skates. They were intended strictly for indoor skating at roller rinks. These rinks were very popular in the 1940s and 1950s. You were not allowed to use your outdoor sidewalk skates at these establishments. You either bought your own rink skates (expensive!) or rented them on site.

The next evolution of the roller skate was the in-line skate, which originally appeared under the trade name of Rollerblade. These skates had hard rubber or vinyl wheels, four of them, all in a single line under the center of the skate boot. These boots were a rigid plastic shell, with a padded liner, much more like a ski boot than a skate boot. Since the Rollerblade innovation, there have been countless "knock-offs."

Not Quite a Skate, But Still Standing up on Wheels

Somewhere in the middle of all this, beginning in the late 1950s to mid-1960s, along came a variation known as the skateboard. They do not attach to your feet or shoes in any way. It's all a matter of balance as you ride on a board. The earliest were homemade gizmos, with the trucks of regular metal skates simply being re-attached to any handy board.

The skateboard has also evolved into fancy composite materials with features I don't understand.

The In-Line Skate, Examined

As I mentioned above, the boot is rigid, more related to a ski boot than the boot of the old-style shoe-skates or modern ice skates. This rigid boot is perfect for me, as I tend toward weak ankles. I always had to lace my ice skates so tight around the ankles that my toes would go numb.

Under the boot are centered the wheels, and the brake, which is at the rear of one of the skates, compared to the 'toe stop' on traditional rink skates.

The wheels are thinner than those on traditional roller skates by nearly half and have a tapered profile.

Wheels are centered under the skate

Wheels are centered under the skate

A thinner, tapered wheel makes for less rolling resistance

A thinner, tapered wheel makes for less rolling resistance

Depending on the manufacturer, the boots may be cinched shut with any number of fasteners, ranging from plastic gripper-lever-ratchet arrangements to laces to hook-type devices.

Where the boot differs from a ski boot is that it is straight, whereas a ski boot (at least the ones I've seen, I'm not a skier), appears to be molded with a forced forward bend at the ankle.

As the sport grew in popularity, more and more advanced designs showed up, including racing models with as many as six wheels in a slotted carrier that actually extends past the skate boot. These models have no brakes! (This long wheelbase is similar to the extremely long blades seen on speed skates for ice racing, as seen in the Olympics.)

Ratchet-style snap locks are used on many styles for quick and easy fastening

Ratchet-style snap locks are used on many styles for quick and easy fastening

Gearing Up for Safety

In-line skating, like any sport, is not without its risks, most of which are related to falling. In order to protect vital joints such as knees, wrists, and elbows, specially-designed padding is available for each joint. A helmet is also a smart investment, as it is so easy to fall and hit your head, especially if you are just learning to use these skates, and even more so for children.

You can do without the elbow pads: that's a less likely impact spot, but please, get the helmet, wrist, and knee pads. Remember, most in-line skating takes place outdoors, either on asphalt walking trails, sidewalks and some even skate in the street. (Not really a smart thing to do.)

If you fall while ice skating, ice is hard, and it will probably hurt. But it is also slippery, so upon impact, you will slide quite a ways, and the surface is fairly smooth. You are not too likely to bloody yourself. Not so with in-line skating. If you fall on asphalt or concrete, you're going to get some nasty road rash. And knees are what keep us walking, so they need protection.

Instinct has us throwing our hands out to catch us as we fall, whether forward or backwards. If you go down at the right angle, you take all your weight on your hands, and that can jam your wrists pretty severely, or even cause a fracture.

The wrist and knee guards are soft inside, with a hard plastic shell outside, so they can both serve as a protective splint and a sliding surface, to scrub off some of the force of the impact.

Even experienced skaters can fall. I always, always wore my wrist and knee guards.

Safety Gear

Wrist, knee and elbow pads shown.  Everyone knows what a helmet looks like--choose your favorite style.

Wrist, knee and elbow pads shown. Everyone knows what a helmet looks like--choose your favorite style.

Sort of Like Ice Skating, But Not Exactly

Now, if you've never been on in-line skates before, it's an entirely different feeling, and you would be well-advised to get accustomed to them in an area where there are plenty of things to hold onto as you learn to balance.

Everyone is different, and everyone has a different opinion. My husband does not like this style of skate; he prefers the old-fashioned shoe skates with their four wheels in the "corners."

I much prefer the in-line skates, because to me, they are much more like ice skating, which I did for many years (at indoor rinks, mind you, we don't live in snow country).

Of course, I first learned on those old metal clamp-on roller skates, but once I learned ice skating, and tried to go back to the traditional 4-wheels-in-the-corners skates, I thought I was going to kill myself. I found them difficult to maneuver. The sketch below shows why, but suffice it to say, it is because there is more surface area you are trying to push and turn.

Skate Footprint Comparisons

Comparison of relative 'footprints' and profiles of the various skate types

Comparison of relative 'footprints' and profiles of the various skate types

Moving Forward

The technique for in-line skating is very much more like ice skating, in that you push off on each stroke on a diagonal motion. Trying to push off straight forward is going to send you down on your nose, as the wheels will just roll under you, and unlike figure skates for ice, or traditional rink roller skates, there is no toe pick or toe stop to end that forward momentum, or offer a pushing-off surface. So, you must learn to use the sides of the wheels to shove off and continue skating, as shown in the photo below.

Start off by pushing on the diagonal, against the sides of the wheels

Start off by pushing on the diagonal, against the sides of the wheels


Your posture while in-line skating is vital to maintaining your balance. You do not want a rigidly vertical, military-style posture. This will assure a fall, if not multiple falls.

You need to be leaning slightly forward from the hips, not bent over forward at the waist, just a bit of a lean into your direction of travel.

This balances you against the tendency of the wheels to want to roll out from under you; it is really no different than any other kind of skating; just a lot more important. If you try to stand up straight, or worse, lean backward at all, you are guaranteed to land on your backside.

Posture and Balance

Lean forward a little bit, but don't overbalance and fall on your face; notice a vertical line up from my knee would be slightly in front of my head

Lean forward a little bit, but don't overbalance and fall on your face; notice a vertical line up from my knee would be slightly in front of my head


As I mentioned earlier, the brake is on the rear of the skate,(on one skate only), and is activated by extending the braking foot out in front of you, and exerting downward and backward pressure from a half-squat position. It puts a lot of force that you can really feel on the hamstrings and calf muscles. The faster you go, or the steeper the slope, the deeper the crouch, and the hotter the 'burn' in your leg muscles.

You cannot use a "T" stop as in ice skating; you will fall. Nor can you do a 'snowplow' stop, also doable on ice, in which you turn yourself and your feet at right angles to the direction you were going, and bear down with sideways pressure. You will fall if you try this on inline skates.

The reason for only a single brake pad is, believe it or not, safety. You can brake both wheels at once on a bike, but if you try to brake both skates at once on inline skates, you will be overbalanced rearward, leading to landing square on your bum.

That said, the brake pad can be installed on either skate; choose the one you prefer, that ideally, is your stronger leg.

(Note: If I look uncomfortable in any of the photos, it's because it's easier to keep your balance when actually moving, just as with a bicycle: try to balance when standing still, without your feet touching the ground.)

Basic stopping: slight crouch position

Basic stopping: slight crouch position

Deeper crouch position for braking on hills, or just skating faster on level ground

Deeper crouch position for braking on hills, or just skating faster on level ground

Road Hazards

As you skate down the path, keep an eye out for litter or debris that can trip you up. Particular enemies include Eucalyptus pods, and pencil-sized or larger twigs or sticks. These can behave very much like pulling hard on only a bicycle's front brakes, with no rear brakes; you'll probably take a flying lesson over the handlebars. Likewise, if you come up against a larger twig, unless you're very quick on your feet, you're likely to go down.

Smaller little pebbles, though, up to about the size of a pea, don't generally bother the in-line skater, where they would be a real hazard to traditional skates. This is because of the tapered aspect of the wheel—there is not enough surface area touching the ground for this small object to be a stopper—they will generally just be shot out to the side.

Probably the worst road hazards you will encounter are large open cracks and tar patches. Places where cracks have appeared in the path or street, and they have used a liquid tar spot filler to patch the cracks are treacherous. Unlike the normal asphalt surface, these are very visible (luckily for the skaters) dark black shiny squiggly lines. Steer clear.

When my daughters and I would go skating on our favorite trail, there was a section that had a lot of these tar patches. We nicknamed it "La Brea," after the famous tar pits in Los Angeles.

On cold days, hitting one of these patches is like hitting ice—they become very slippery. On hot days, they get very sticky, and hitting the stuff is like having a vise suddenly clamp shut on your front wheel, and you come to an instant halt. At least your skate does—your body still has its forward momentum, and you are going down. Hard. (I imagine the same would hold true for traditional skates, but I haven't been on that type since I was a child.)

Who Can Skate In-Line?

Pretty much anyone from a kid getting their first pair of skates to a retiree can in-line skate. All that is needed is a willingness to try, the safety gear, and a good sense of balance.

For us old fogeys like myself, probably a physical checkup from your doctor is a good starting point. But, I first began in-line skating at age 45. That's when I was actually in the best shape of my life, and my daughters and I would go out at least a couple of times a week, skating about 9 miles each time on our favorite trail.

As of this writing, I haven't actually been skating in many years, due to a knee injury that happened back in 2001, (not related to skating), but I do miss it so much, that since I've had a knee replacement, I'm up for trying it again.

The very best thing about skating? It's fun! And oh, by the way, it just happens to be exercise, and that's my kind of exercise!

© 2012 Liz Elias


Liz Elias (author) from Oakley, CA on November 26, 2014:

Hi, Beverly Stevens!

Oh, it is so much fun! And I do find the technique very similar to ice skating.

I wanted to get back on my skates this year, but the knee recovery was not quite where I needed it to be to feel confident, and we also had a lot of issues with hubby's health, and I needed to pretty much stay home.

Maybe spring/summer of 2015 will see me back on my skates! I so miss skating!

Beverly Stevens from College Station on November 26, 2014:

I'm used to the old fashioned skates, but after reading your article, I'm willing to give inline skates a try. Thanks.

Liz Elias (author) from Oakley, CA on May 24, 2014:

Hello, HappyMikeWritter ;

Thanks so much for reading. I'm glad you found the article helpful. Please, do try the sport--or even old-fashioned skates, if you feel better about those. But whatever you do, please, DO use the safety gear! Nothing will turn you off faster than wrecking your knees, or scuffing up your hands if you fall!

Those knee pads and wrist guards do work, and work very well. I've gone down a few times--a trail we used to use had some tar patches, and if it was a warm day, and you hit that tar, it was soft, and grabbed your skate wheel like a vise, and down you'd go if you weren't quick enough on your other foot to hop-skip over it. If it was a cold day, the stuff was like hitting black ice. (We learned to avoid skating over those patches!)

Best wishes!

HappyMikeWritter on May 24, 2014:

I trully enjoy reading this. I mean I am 6 feet 8 and totally terrified even to think of getting skates myself. So many friends trying to convince me to try to your article is going to surely help me. hahahaha. I still cannot imagine myself with all the safety gear on but I guess I am willing to try. Thank you for sharing this article with us.

Liz Elias (author) from Oakley, CA on November 11, 2013:

Hello, Shyron E Shenko!

Thanks so very much for your awesome comment! I think that would be a great idea for the Summer Olympics! You go, girl! You must be very proud of your grandson, indeed!

I'm sorry you won't be able to skate, yourself. That's too bad. I guess the hips figure more than the knees? I had a knee replacement this year (2013), and my doctor feels that I should be able to get back on my skates....perhaps next spring or summer, which will be about a year past the surgery.

Thank you very much for the votes and share!

Shyron E Shenko from Texas on November 11, 2013:

MsLizzy, I would love to inline skate, but I am told by my doctor I can't even roller skate anymore because I have a hip replacement. But I do have a grandson, who has won numerous awards for inline and I am trying to get the Olympics to include inline same as ice skating, "Why don't we have Inline skating in the Olympic Games?"

Loved your article, voted up, awesome, interesting and shared.

Keep on rolling.


Liz Elias (author) from Oakley, CA on July 12, 2012:

Hello, prasetio30,

I'm pleased you enjoyed this hub. Do give inline skating a try; it is indeed a lot of fun. Thank you very much for taking the time to comment.

prasetio30 from malang-indonesia on July 12, 2012:

I had never tried in line skating before. But it looks so fun. I'll try one day. Thanks for share with us. Have a nice day!

Liz Elias (author) from Oakley, CA on July 11, 2012:

Hello, Pamela Kinnaird W,

Wow--on Maui? Down the side of a volcano, just about! that does sound way too dare-devilish, even for me! My one trip down a steep hill was enough. I had sore muscles for a week from putting so much pressure on the brake!

Glad you enjoyed the photos, and the article. Your trip down memory lane to the rinks and the skating music is well taken. They did the same at the ice rinks, taking turns with: "All Skate," "Men Only," "Ladies Only" and "Couples Only." Those were the days....

Oh, I'm going skating again...have no doubt. The knee guards are padded on the inside, so no worries. Anyway, I don't fall much...or didn't used to. I might take a spill getting used to having wheels under me again, but I'm thinking it's like riding a bike--once you learn, it stays with you.

Thanks very much for the high praise, kudos and the votes.

Pamela Dapples from Arizona. on July 11, 2012:

Those are great photos you had your husband take. I enjoyed your hub so much. I used to rollerblade a lot with my young adult kids -- about 10 - 15 years ago on Oahu. But they were way too dare-devilish and I had started spending all my time yelling things like, "No, you can't go down that hill. It's too long and steep!" It got too crazy, so I just stayed home and waited for the paramedic to call me.

I used to love going rollerskating at a rink in Esquimalt, Victoria, BC. The music would play....It was so fun back in the late '60's.

This was a really comprehensive hub. Congratulations on being chosen for Hub of the Day. You did such a good job. I do hope you don't risk your knee and get out there skating again. What about paddling? I'm not sure if that takes knee action.

Voting up and awesome.

Liz Elias (author) from Oakley, CA on July 11, 2012:

@ Living Well Now--Thanks so very much for the comment and the congrats. I'm most pleased that you enjoyed the article. I, on the other hand, do not run, or care to. I can sprint for short distances, if need be, but in college P.E. class, I never could run around the track--even one lap--without getting the dreaded "stitch in the side." Cycling is fun, too, but I find it to be more effort than skating, especially on even moderate hills.

@ J.S.Matthew--I'm so pleased you found my article so enjoyable, including the "oh-so-brief history." LOL As I've been given to understand, the original Rollerblade brand was conceived of by hockey players looking to stay in shape and in practice during their off-season months.

Thanks so much for your vote and the share!

JS Matthew from Massachusetts, USA on July 11, 2012:

What a great review of the history of skates! I was a hockey player for 10 years so inline skates, aka "Roller Blades" came easy to me. I could never learn how to use the original 4 wheel roller skates though! Great Hub! Love the photos! Congratulations on the Hub of the Day! Voted and shared!


Living Well Now from Near Indianapolis on July 11, 2012:

It looks like fun! I'm way too chicken to try inline skating. Or skating of any kind for that matter. I'll stick with cycling and running. Congratulations on your HotD! Nice work!

Liz Elias (author) from Oakley, CA on July 11, 2012:

Hello jpcmc,

Thanks for stopping by. That's the beauty of in-line skating (or any skating) these days--we have CRASH GEAR that takes the scrapes for us! No more bloody knees or hands. ;-)

Liz Elias (author) from Oakley, CA on July 11, 2012:

@ lovedoctor926—Thank you very much for your valuable input. Posture is key—and standing up too straight on in-line skates is a bad thing—you do need that forward lean. You are smart to stay out of the street as well—too many things can go wrong too fast.

I started ice skating at the local rink in high school, and it was after that I found that I could no longer maneuver the traditional roller skates, so when the in-lines came out, I found my new exercise niche, as by then, most of the ice rinks were gone!

Thanks for the vote!

@ ktrapp—Thank you so much for the compliments and the kudos! I’m very pleased you so enjoyed the photos. I’ve been lucky to never break anything seriously. I did, once, have a small crack fracture of my elbow, (with no displacement of the bone),when I fell while ice skating…I landed backwards, hands-first, and the shock telegraphed up to the elbow. Weird that I didn’t break my wrist instead. And—that was before everyone got all geared up in crash-guards.

@ rebeccamealey—Oh, my goodness, I’m so sorry you’ve missed out on the fun of skating. It could be an inner ear thing, as you surmise. Not being a doctor, though, I can’t say for sure. You are sure correct in that the best kind of exercise is the kind we actually DO, because it is FUN, and only incidentally the dreaded ‘exercise.’ Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing!

@ pstraubie48—I assure you, it IS fun! Those darned strap-on skates—I’m sure more than one of us who remembers those also remembers the toe clip coming loose, leaving the skate dangling from the ankle strap and sending the skater knees-first into the sidewalk! After I moved to ice skating, then the in-line skates, I never looked back. Somewhere around here, though, I’m sure I still have an old skate key…..

Thank you very much for your comment and the compliment and kudos! Much appreciated.

@ nmdonders—You should try it—it’s a blast! If you have a nice flat trail, that is the best place to skate for beginners, but as someone else pointed out, learning the basics in a confined area with things to grab hold of is not a bad idea; especially if you’re not a teenager anymore! ;-)

Thanks for the congrats and I’m pleased you enjoyed the article.

@ livingpah2004—So pleased you enjoyed the article and found it useful. I appreciate your leaving a comment and thank you for the votes and kudos.

JP Carlos from Quezon CIty, Phlippines on July 11, 2012:

Never really learned how to skate. I guess it's the fear of scrapes lol.

Milli from USA on July 11, 2012:

Thanks for the useful tips with pictures. Useful and Voted up!

Congrats on Hotd!

Nira Perkins on July 11, 2012:

I still have never tried inline skating. Maybe one day. The weather is certainly nice enough to practice ... where nobody will see me or get hurt :) Congrats on Hub of the Day! Great pictures & fantastic information.

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on July 11, 2012:

You make this look like fun. I first skated on those strap on metal skates eons ago. Then graduated to roller skates. Then ice skating which in fact my feet did not enjoy. I enjoy watching others inline skate so will look for a video of YOU on youtube on your inline skates.

Congratulations on hub of the day. Awesome.

Rebecca Mealey from Northeastern Georgia, USA on July 11, 2012:

Would you believe I can not skate? Never could. Not even with roller skates as a child. I think it is some kind of inner ear balance problem. My daughter use to roller blade when she was younger and she was so fit. I know it is great exercise. And the best kind because it is FUN!

Kristin Trapp from Illinois on July 11, 2012:

This is fantastic. I LOVE your photos! I remember going to an old roller rink sometimes when I was a kid and several times there were some broken arms and wrists. And my mother broke her arm ice skating once. When my kids were younger and rollerblades were popular, the pediatrician always asked if the kids wore wrist guards and helmets. So you are so right to stress safety, but once you've got the proper gear, it's so much fun. Congratulations on your Hub of the Day.

lovedoctor926 on July 11, 2012:

Voted up. You made very good points. Posture is one of the most important things when skating. Some people tend to push themselves back instead of keeping their back straight and then end up falling.

I've been rollerskating since I was a kid. Most of my parties were held at the local skating rink. I still have my first pair of skates in the closet. I prefer inline skates because you can skate a lot faster. I don't like to skate in the street nor at the beach unless it's on the pavement. Iceskating is a little more difficult, but you can master it. I remember skating on ice the very first time in NY city at Rockefeller Center. I held on to the wall the entire time. I've gotten better at it though.

Liz Elias (author) from Oakley, CA on July 11, 2012:

Hi, Mary615,

Thanks very much for the kudos and the votes and share! I will be careful--I always am. ;-) I wouldn't like a broken hip, either, but, well, I refuse to live life in fear. I have always been a tomboy and somewhat adventurous, and that's not going to change on account of some stinking calendar page! ;-) (Although, I draw the line at bungee-jumping!)

Mary Hyatt from Florida on July 11, 2012:

You are one brave lady!!!! Congrats on HOTD! I can't afford a broken hip at my age, but it sure looks like fun. JUST BE CAREFUL.

I voted this UP and will share.

Liz Elias (author) from Oakley, CA on July 11, 2012:

Hello, Happyboomernurse,

Thanks very much for the kudos! I sure was surprised to find my article selected as a HOTD when I turned on my computer this morning!

Yes--I was 45 when I started in-line skating; my kids were both young adults at the time, as well. It was my younger daughter who got us all into it.

At present, I do have a bum knee..but I miss skating, so I'm tempted to give it a try again anyway. The trails where I live now are all flat, so I won't have any steep hills to contend with massive braking effort.

Thank you so much for the votes and your comment!

Gail Sobotkin from South Carolina on July 11, 2012:

Congratulations on earning Hub of the Day for this comprehensive and well written article.

I definitely remember the old metal skates and skate keys and like you, I learned in-line skating when my son was already an adult.

Don't skate at present as my knees and legs aren't as strong as they used to be and I fear fracturing a hip if I should fall.

Voted up across the board.

Liz Elias (author) from Oakley, CA on July 11, 2012:

@ plussizepixie--Congratulations of braving the world of in-line skating. Once you get the hang of it, it's a blast! Just be advised that there are not necessarily any handrails or suitable barriers in the great outdoors into which you can safely 'crash.' Personally, I don't like the plow stops or T-stops...they are very tricky on these skates; any misalignment can send the stopping wheels off to the side instead of stopping you--especially true with the t-stop. Thanks very much for stopping by and sharing your experience! Go for it!

@ CyberShelley--Aha--apparently another reader of a "certain age" if you remember the old metal skates! (wink, wink!) Thank you so much for the compliment and congrats. I appreciate your comment.

@ ksinll--Oh, you are so right. Too many people give up after one try, their 'bad experience' a matter only of not being willing to learn the techniques. And learning to stop going down a hill? Agreed. A lesson I learned the hard way. My very first time out, our group was on rented skates. We went all the way to the end of the 6-mile trail, and I thought I was 'good,' as there had been opportunities along the way to practice the braking. The last, oh, about 200 feet, of that trail was a hill; but what a hill!!

OMG!! I was in such a deep crouch, pressing back for all I was worth on that brake, and FEELING THE BURN in the hamstrings all the way down, but I did not dare ease up! I had sore muscles the rest of that week! I did have fun, and subsequently got my own skates, and that trail was our favorite place to skate. But, I never went up that hill again but once--and took off the skates and came down the steep part stocking-footed!

Thanks so very much for contributing such an important piece of advice.

@ lezsaysit--Thank you very much for jumping in. I'm pleased you enjoyed the article.

@ moonlake--Thanks very much for the congrats and the votes. Much appreciated; I'm glad you enjoyed the article. But, once you learn the basics, as ksinll and plussizepixie said, it really is a lot of fun. I've taken my share of falls, but thanks to the 'crash gear,' I've never gotten hurt. It is such a freeing experience..almost like flying along the ground, because the rubber wheels are softer than comp wheels, and almost act as shock absorbers.

@ scottie55puckett--Thank you very much! I'm glad you enjoyed the article, and I appreciate your taking time to comment and let me know.

@ urmilashukla23--Thank you so much for the kudos and the vote! I'm most pleased you like the article and I appreciate your comment.

@ gts68--Thanks for sharing that tip for coasting techniques. When I mentioned that little stones would get kicked off to the side, I was primarily thinking of the action of skating, using alternate feet to push off. The pebble will probably kick away from the foot on the ground (but not always--hence the crash gear!) ... ;-) I have had incidents where I almost went down, but was able to catch my balance.

If you're in braking mode, your feet are staggered anyway, so you're's an issue with simple coasting. I appreciate your input and contribution of information.

Tom Samworth from Canada on July 11, 2012:

Just a tip for battling 'road hazzards' : when you're coasting, stagger your feet - don't keep them parallel. Not sure of the exact physics but if you hit a stone with your feet parallel, you're going 'ass over tea kettle'. If your feet are staggered, the one foot will catch on the hazzard but you will more than likely retain your balance.

Urmila from Rancho Cucamonga,CA, USA on July 11, 2012:

Great tips. Thanks for sharing. Voted up!

Congratulations on Hub of the day!

scottie55puckett on July 11, 2012:

I like this hub.

moonlake from America on July 11, 2012:

I loved skating at one time. But I agree with Arlene I would break my neck, end up in the hospital, have to pay a huge bill, and have a heart attack because I wasn't moving around at all. It gives me the shakes just thinking of it. A great hub and voted Up.

Congrats on Hub Of The Day.

lezsaysit from New York, NY on July 11, 2012:

Love the pics and tips.

ksinll on July 11, 2012:

I love inline skating but I know so many people that try it once then don't ever do it again. Usually because of a bad experience trying to stop. It is highly recommended to practice stopping in a small, flat area before going to a trail with even slight hills. You can gain momentum fast and those higher speeds are not ideal for learning how to stop for the first time!

Shelley Watson on July 11, 2012:

I remember those metal skates! Congratulations on a great hub.

plussizepixie on July 11, 2012:

I used to skate with the old strap on over your shoes type skates but at the grand old age of 44 I have started in line skating lessons with two of my sons at a local rink & yes it's great fun. None of the skates I've used have ever had a brake on so you have to use a T stop or ski plough stop or just crash in to the barriers!

Liz Elias (author) from Oakley, CA on July 08, 2012:

Hello, ChristyWrites,

If you still have the skates, it's worth trying again, now that you know the technique. ;-) It really is a lot of fun, and if you have the 'crash pads' on, taking a fall doesn't really do you any damage (except to your ego).

You only conquer a fear by facing it--the old "get right back on the horse that threw you," philosophy.

Thanks for the share...and best wishes!

Christy Birmingham from British Columbia, Canada on July 08, 2012:

I bought in-line skates a few years ago, used them a few times, and fell so much that I now have a fear! I did not realize any of the techniques you write here about using the sides of the wheels and bending forward. I wish I knew this back then! Thanks and I will share to help others get over the fear too!

Liz Elias (author) from Oakley, CA on February 08, 2012:

Hello, pstraubie48--

I'm glad I was able to put a smile on your face. I never could get the hang of the old-style boot skates. We went only a few times to a roller rink--and used the rental skates. The toe stops always got me into trouble; I made good friends with the floor.

Thanks very much for stopping by and adding your memories.

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on February 08, 2012:

Hi I smiled as I read of the metal skates and then the boot skates ...I put many a mile on the boot skates. Friday nights once a month we traveled 30 miles to skate at a skating rink.

I have not tried the new model of skates...I certainly know a lot more about them than I did after reading this. Maybe I will have to give them a try. Thanks for sharing this.

Liz Elias (author) from Oakley, CA on January 26, 2012:

Hi, Simone--

Thank you so much for the compliment! I'm very pleased that you enjoyed the article. Now go get your skates out! ;-)

Simone Haruko Smith from San Francisco on January 26, 2012:

What a great read this was! Now I somewhat regret neglecting my inline skates as a kid. I had no idea that "Rollerblade" was a brand name. And those strap-on skates of the days of yore sound like great fun. Fascinating Hub!

Liz Elias (author) from Oakley, CA on January 25, 2012:

Hi, Steph--

Thanks much! I don't think I'm much of a fact, I had to have hubby re-do the pix, because the first time around, I was concentrating so hard on holding still that I was frowning...not a good advertisement for a fun thing to do! ;-) It's hard to hold still on skates! ;-)

Seriously, though I did want to make that point about the helmet, and not think it was a 'do as I say, not as I do' thing...because I don't believe in that. I think the helmet is with my bike..I must dig it out.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and I hope I have inspired you to go skating.

Stephanie Marshall from Bend, Oregon on January 25, 2012:

I really loved this hub, perhaps in the most part because of your modeling... :-) But seriously, excellent explanation of inline skating and I even liked how you noted you were not wearing a helmet in the photos, but reminding your readers about safety first! I'm inspired to take out my own skates this spring!

Liz Elias (author) from Oakley, CA on January 25, 2012:

Hi there, GmaGoldie--

Thanks so much for sharing your experience. I don't think I would have been brave enough to try and walk dogs while skating! I am so sorry you've lost your furry friends. I've been there and know how hard it is. I do know they'd want you to keep skating, remembering what fun you all had. In that way, they will still be with you.

Kelly Kline Burnett from Madison, Wisconsin on January 25, 2012:

Love water sports and LOVE my inline skates. I have vowed to take up bicycling this year too.

I used to take my two giant golden retrievers with me while on my inline skates. Oh, the three of us were quite a sight.

Yes, I had the inline skates to exercise my legs and with the two dogs - you guessed it my arms were what was exercised!

I have been on my skates since I lost my beautiful boys to the old age. I miss them terribly but they wouldn't want me to give my skates.

Perhaps after the bicycling, I will pick up the skates once again.

Don't forget the knee pads!

Liz Elias (author) from Oakley, CA on January 25, 2012:

Hi, Arlene..

LOL.. It's not that difficult, really. I AM going skating again this year--I've made up my mind. Maybe that exercise is what the doggoned knee needs!

(Ah--shoot--gotta go back and edit--just realized I forgot my comparison to other skates illustraion!)

Arlene V. Poma on January 25, 2012:

Oh, noooooooooooooooooooo, MsLizzy!!! Not this retiree! I remember when inline skating first came out. I can roller skate and "shoot the duck." I can ice skate and have a dozen people fall on top of me. But not inline skating. I WILL break my neck and every existing bone in my body. But I am content to inline skate through your Hub. Voted up and everything else, but not enough for me to put on inline skates!