Skate Tips


If you don't like sharp skates, you don't have a guy who knows how to sharpen skates. I've heard a lot of goalies say they prefer a dull blade because it's easier to do X thing or exicute Y move. However the only thing that's predictable about a dull blade is the lack of bite when you need it. With a sharp skate there is a certain level of consistancy... if the guy that sharpens your skates knows the rink conditions, they can even adjust for that to keep everything consistant. Tell me that you don't like a sharp skate because it bites too much when you shuffle, they can fix that... not enough bite when you push off, they can fix that... you like to use the heal of your skate for control when you're on the ice, they have a cut for that too, soft ice, hard ice, lack of balance, you get tired when you stand in one place??? It might just be how your skates are sharpened. Be warned, trial and error is how you will determine what's best for you. Taking more than one set of blades to the rink that have different adjustment to the way they are sharpened is a good way to compare your options.


profile info - goalie skates are more flat on the bottom than player skates... increased ice surface contact... stability... 2ndary zones of ice contact... lenght of blade... height of blade (angle vs ankle stability)...


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Starting on the left the first skate looking head on at the toe is showing what a 1 inch hollow looks like, if you look at your skates they might seem flat across the bottom but there is actually a little dip in the middle that runs from front to back (the hollow) the 1 inch is the radius of the cut... the next skate has a much smaller radius 3/8 inch and you will notice that the hollow is much deeper in the middle making the edges taller, sharper, and more easily damaged... hence when you here them talking about blowing out an edge, it's that taller pointy part that's breaking off or mashing down. Now the radius of the hallow has to do with personal preference, ice conditions and size of the goalie... a good skate sharpener will be able to tell you the conditions of the different local rinks, which are hard ice, which are soft and you can actually have them fine tuned for a specific arena / ice type.

Now players normally have this hollow in the middle of the blade because they use both the insides and outsides of the blade equally... goalie as we know are special. When you move the center of the hollow towards the outside of the skate, and look closely you will notice the edge on the inside is taller and the outside is much shorter. So now as you go through the goalies movement and angle the skates it will cause benefits and draw backs depending on what they are trying to do.

When looking at a shuffle for example... from the goalies right to left to. As the right knee comes in to push off, the right skate angles into the ice and that taller side really digs into to get a good push... now if the goalie can hold the left skate in a vertical position while sliding, the short side of the blade is all that's offering resistance, it almost acts like a ramp and pushes the ice with less effort under the skate allowing him to glide more easily to the outside. Some goalies like a less sharp skate for this reason... basically what you are making is a skate with one side that is less sharp and wont dig in... without having dull skates.

Another perk is you get a little more bite when you are working on butterfly pushes, t-pushes, anything that uses that inside blade to push. The draw backs are a lopsided blade that doesn't glide as nice or straight on the ice... anything that uses the outside of your blade like skating in a circles, the foot on the inside of the circle has very little bite... frankly for a goalie the pros far outweigh the cons.

Oh and currently we are at about a 5/8" grind with (I think) about a 10 deg tilt on that blade... they get the offset by putting the skate in the holder on the grinder tilted to one side. So you will notice the drawing is not to scale and the angles are off so you can see the difference more clearly. If you look hard on your skates after they are done you can see the difference, but it's not a lot.


tilt info - goalie skates don't have as much forward tilt as player skates... stability... ready position... potential energy... details in progress...