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Old 04-06-2009, 01:41 AM   #1
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Default Learning to Rollarblade?

I have bought a pair of rollarblades like 5 years ago and still have not learn how to "ride" them! It's frustrating - now that the weather is nice I'm thinking about trying to learn again.

I live in British Columbia; there are hills, slants, inclines, declines, whatever, everywhere! I'm just so scared of falling and hurting myself that I freak myself out whenever I get to the slightest hill. Sooo... I just stop. I need to get past this fear so I can start learning again. I also do not know how to brake so I feel that when I get to the bottom of the hill I won't stop! AH!

Any tips for a newbie? I need a 1-on-1 on how to brake!

Last edited by SweetScrumptious; 04-06-2009 at 01:42 AM.
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Old 04-06-2009, 08:44 PM   #2
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*friendly bump*
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Old 04-06-2009, 09:26 PM   #3
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HI sweetscrumptious!
I havent rollerbladed in a couple of years....I left mine behind with my Sis when I moved cross country. The best advice I can think of is start small. find a little hill and go slow. use your brake if you get going to quickly. And most of all don't forget your protective gear! I hope you get out and have fun!
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Old 04-06-2009, 11:34 PM   #4
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I LOVE rollerblading! Once you do it you'll enjoy it. But take it slow, be careful. When you can find some places with little slants work on braking, turning, etc. to become better and quicker at those things. Find hills that have grass next to them. If you find yourself going to fast but afraid to brake, or think you're going to fall head toward the grass.. for a couple of reasons:
1) If you fall, it won't hurt as bad as pavement
2) The grass will help slow you down and you may not end up falling

Something that I learned from DH about motorcycling, but still applies here:
We are all going to fall at one time or another. If you're wearing your protective gear, you won't get hurt too badly. You will end up with scraps and cuts, but just get back up.
Remember if you're falling face first, DO NOT, I repeat DO NOT, put your arms out to save your face!! To protect your face cover it with your arms as if blocking it from an attack, but hold your arms toward yourself. Don't put your hand away from your body, the most common break for any fall, any way is broken hands and wrists.. guess how that happens? Work against the natural inclination to put your hands out in front of you...

Hope this helps Get out there and enjoy the breeze while you're blading!
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Old 04-06-2009, 11:48 PM   #5
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I like rollarblades but I am afraid of falling and hurting myself too, but I see that many newbies find a little hill and go slow to practise.
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Old 04-07-2009, 12:10 AM   #6
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I too am scared! I'll only go inside or on a flat surface because one time I went down a slight hill, hit a stick and went airborne! I've been scared ever since (I landed on my wrists then elbows then knees so thank goodness for pads!) My friend still cracks up at the thought of how I looked sailing thru the air!
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Old 04-07-2009, 05:00 PM   #7
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Helpful tips people! I guess I'll just have to get out there and face my fears! I'll prob strap them on in the next couple of days...
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Old 04-07-2009, 05:28 PM   #8
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I don't have rollerblades, but i've been trying to work on ice skating for almost 2 years.
I can stay up and i don't have to cling to anything, but i'm just afraid to really push off and glide...
it's quite frustrating.
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Old 04-07-2009, 07:16 PM   #9
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I used to rollerblade for years. The best advice I can give: wear all your pads and your helmet (they really do protect you - I had a spill that would surely have resulted in a thoroughly smashed elbow, but all that happened was a scratch on my elbow pad!), and instead of using the "brake" at the front or back of the skate, stop by turning. And when going downhill, don't go straight down, zigzag down so you don't gain as much momentum. And if you ARE going to fall, try to land on your side so you don't hurt your hands or wrists.

Oh, and if you're that nervous about bad terrain, map out a route for yourself that you've walked on foot before. And remember that it's NEVER as scary as you'd think. As a kid I was scared to go over a brick path on a certain block, so I just kept circling and going over it - I didn't fall, I didn't even have any trouble once I stopped thinking I would! A lot of what's scaring you is in your head.
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Old 04-09-2009, 11:51 PM   #10
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Thanks for the tips Violet and others.

Now I'm really itching to strap on my blades...! I just NEED to start doing it!

I'll update once I get out there and see what I can do!
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Old 04-10-2009, 12:04 AM   #11
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I agree with the advice Violet has given you....esp with scouting out a good location to learn. Braking is very different than regular roller skates but with practice they do get easier. Just wear your protective gear

I used to rollerblade all of the time before kids esp in college. It's just hard to do with 3 kids now lol
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Old 04-13-2009, 03:17 PM   #12
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I like to go inline skating in the park when the weather's good as an alternative to jogging, and to ice skating when the rinks are closed for summer. As much as I prefer ice skating (and it is undoubtedly my favorite sport, to watch AND to practice - I adore the cold, the speed and the thrill of learning new steps!), I enjoy rollerblading in the summer.
I second the advice of not relying to the brake for an effective stop - especially when you're still not sure on your feet I find the balance of the stance needed unnecessarily complicated for a beginner, and if you get on uneven ground I've found you can get your brake bumping into stuff and altering your balance... to be honest, I removed my brake from my skates as soon as I got them. I agree on turning as the best stopping method, and if I get tooooooooo fast but I'm not going to stop, dragging on skate behind in a t position, though bad on the wheels, will make you loose some speed. Just don't use this as your main stopping method, or you'll kill your wheels way too fast!!!
I try to skate near the grass too - it actually happened a couple of times that my choice was between slamming into a kid who was running around not looking at what happened around him, and throwing myself into the grass, and of course I choose the second option with almost no damage apart from some grass stains!
I try to avoid rollerblading when the weather has been very bad too recently - if I think there will be too much debris from trees and such on the pavement, and the park management won't have had the time to clean it up, I prefer to do something else and not risk too much.
Just as with ice skating, the key of this sport is bending the knees, and not being too rigid - the usual stance is bent at the knees, and slightly forward at the waist too (you probably won't be able to bend too much at the ankle, so bending at the waist compensates a little and allows you to bend the knees). Given the choice, fall on the side or forward, putting the protective gear to use - try not to fell backwards on your tailbone/back/head...
Before starting to learn a proper push, you can start by what in ice skating we call "lemons" or "swizzles" - moving forward on two feet by bringing the feet apart and then back together (drawing so an oval shape on the ground) before trying little balance exercises to feel ok staying on one foot, and then learning a proper push...
oooops that's probably much more info than I intended to give, so I'll stop here!
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