There are some basics that you simply can't do without.
For safety, speed skaters wear
knee and shin pads
- a helmet and
- a neck guard.
You can wear a track suit to skate in, but you might like to wear a "skin
suit". For speed, you need skates, call speed skates, that have long flat
You don't have to start off with speed skates but it will help you to go
faster once you've found your 'skating legs'. For beginner skaters, most
rinks will have skates for you to borrow or hire.
Once you have your own speed skates, for your for your safety and for your
speed, you will need to keep your skates sharpened.
To keep your skates sharp, you will need sharpening stones and a jig to hold
them steady while they are being sharpened.
As skaters grow, their equipment is often for sale, so getting the kit together
need not be expensive.
About the skates and blades
There are two elements to speed skates, the boots and the blade. Your local
rink's skate shop will be able to advise you when you want to purchase your
own skates. Check out our list of suppliers
There are many varieties of boots, but they have two things in common:
they provide ankle support and
have blade mountings to allow you to adjust the offset of the blade. You
offset blades to keep the boot from rubbing the ice when leaning into a left
turn at high speed. The picture to the right shows an example of a blade mounting
- that is, an adjustable bracket.
Length of the blade?