How to Jump in Roller Skates
You’ve laced up your skates and put in the work at the rink. You felt a little wobbly at first, but you’ve made it over the biggest hurdle and are feeling comfortable enough to pick up speed and maneuver your way around obstacles in your path. What’s next? Jumping! Jumping in skates can be extremely daunting — after all, landing on wheels just seems like a recipe for disaster. But with a few learned skills, you’ll have mastered it in no time.
Understand the Physics
One of the most common mistakes newbies make is trying to jump while moving too slowly. There are two main reasons this won’t work. First of all, as you’ve probably learned, balancing on your skates is much easier when you pick up speed. Expecting to be able to land stably on your skates while you’re moving at a snail’s pace is unrealistic. Second: speed is what gives you distance. This may not matter to you as much while you’re learning. But later on, when you try to tackle more advanced tricks, this can be a problem. Gear up and get going; you have to pick up your pace if you’re going to land that jump.
Take It Slow
We know what you’re thinking: you just told me to pick up the pace, and now you’re telling me to slow down? But this isn’t about the speed at which you’re skating. We’re talking about slowing down the learning process. When you first learned to skate, you didn’t go for the gold by attempting to maneuver through the crowds at the rink. You learned to hold the correct posture and balance properly before you started moving your feet. Learning to jump takes the same patience. Start with small jumps, even going one foot at a time if you need to, before picking up your knees and going for it.
Build Up Your Strength
If you thought skating took some muscle strength, just wait until you get some air. Jumping itself is a full-body workout, so you’ll need to show some love to your core, glutes and quads if you want to see results. Need some inspiration? Here are some of our favorite workouts for building those muscles:
- Jump squats
- Hurdle jumps
- Hurdle leaps
- Single leg hops
As always, the most important thing is to take it step-by-step and keep practicing. Make sure you’re wearing full protective gear, including a helmet, knee pads, elbow pads and wrist guards. Jumping in skates naturally comes with some risks, so prepare ahead of time and reduce the chance of being injured as much as you can.