Roller Skating Tips for Better Balance
Balance isn’t one of those things we automatically think about when it comes to getting better at roller skating. Control? Yes. Strength? Yes. But balance … we tend to forget how much this can affect our performance overall. Whether you’ve been struggling to balance on your skates for a while or you’re getting the basics down as a first-timer, there are a few tactics you can use to improve your skating stance.
Posture, posture, posture.
Weren’t expecting that to be on the list, were you? Posture isn’t just about not slouching at the dinner table. It’s also about distributing your bodyweight properly, a really important factor when you’re on wheels! When you’re skating, make sure that your feet are shoulder-width apart with your knees bent into a slight squat. It might feel a little awkward at first, but once you start moving, you’ll understand why it’s so important.
Learn to glide.
If you’re not sure what gliding means, it essentially refers to longer strides on your skates as you switch from one foot to the other. As you push off with one foot, practice gliding a little bit longer on the skate that’s still on the ground. The foot you just pushed off with should be slightly hovering above the ground with your knee still bent. Once you begin to lose momentum, do the same with the other foot. Practice doing this with longer and longer (and don’t forget to maintain your posture!).
Stopping on roller skates can be really daunting at first, and it’s usually one of the hardest things for beginners to grasp — especially because it requires balance. To stop, put the skate with the toe stop (if you only have one) in the back as you push down on it. Make sure that you’re still in a squatting posture as you do this to maintain proper bodyweight distribution and prevent you from falling.
As with anything in roller skating, the best way to get better at balancing is through consistent practice. Lace up your skates daily, even if it’s only for 15 minutes. Just this little bit of regular use will help you get in the habit of using the proper techniques. Pro tip: find someone who is a more advanced skater than you are and learn from them. Having someone whom you can emulate and who can give you feedback can be a huge benefit as your skills grow.
- Outdoors Staff