Not many seniors think about starting roller skating but it’s actually a great hobby. In this quick guide, I’ll show you what are the best roller skates for seniors!
Rollers skating and skateboarding are usually seen as activities of the youth but more and more adults and seniors are giving these excellent forms of exercise a chance.
Roller skating is fun and effective exercise as well as a great way to get around if you are able to master it. Roller skating is definitely not for everybody, it’s very challenging and the risk of falling down and injuring is high is you are not experienced with skating.
That said if you have experience in regular skating, downhill skiing, skateboarding or any other form of exercise that requires you to balance over slippery equipment you will find roller skating relatively easy.
On the other hand, if you have never done any form of skating or skiing I can’t really recommend starting on roller skates because falling down on asphalt can have bad consequences.
But since you are looking for the best roller skates for seniors, it’s important to know there are some considerations you should take.
Best Roller Skates For Seniors
So what makes good roller skates for seniors? Well, there is one quality that is more important than anything else. That’s stability.
There are mainly two types of roller skates on the market today. Inline skates and classic skates with two axels of side by side wheels.
While the classic skates might seem like a more stable option, they are actually not. They are more stable when you are simply standing on them or rolling freely, but they are unstable while you kick.
Inline skates offer a much more natural skating technique that resembles regular skating. When you kick for speed, you simply slide your active leg out and let the lead foot roll forward.
Because the skates are inline, your ankle has to stabilize your foot and the skate sideways compared to classic roller skates. If you are used to ice skating, you won’t likely have any trouble with this but if you are new to skating, this might seem strenuous at first.
To make things even harder, many seniors simply lack the strength to keep their ankles stable and straight while wearing the skates.
This is where different roller skates differ a lot. Beginner and seniors friendly skates will have more ankle and foot support than professional tricking skates. The support is essentially meant to compensate for lack of strength.
My recommendation are the Bladerunner Advantage Pro XT beginner roller skates. They are designed for beginners and are designed to offer additional stability, control, and comfort.
They have a very sturdy and supportive composite shell that goes all the way over your ankle. The tightening system with buckles, lace, and strap allows you to essentially stabilize your ankle completely by wrapping the hard shell tightly around your ankle and shin.
The skates are true to size and a very snuck fit. The liner is padded for a very snug fit. This makes them both comfortable stable. It’s very important with skates that your foot stay as secure as possible.
The standard wheels are designed for moderate speeds which is perfect for seniors skates. The skates have great reviews and especially inexperienced skaters love them for their stability and sturdiness.
Is Roller Skating Safe For Seniors?
If you are wondering if roller skating is safe for seniors I’ll have to honestly tell you no, it really isn’t. This is because roller skating can’t really be considered “safe” for anyone.
After all, it involves moving your body at high speeds, usually in an urban environment with less than perfect ability to brake. The potential to fall, trip or collide with something is real.
If you do fall or crash, you will usually have a minimal amount of protection so the potential for injury is very real. The risks are even greater for seniors because aging affects your reaction times, athletic ability and balance. Seniors will also have reduced bone and muscle mass, making them more prone to fractures and severe bruises.
That said, many things in life that are fun and worth doing aren’t really safe. Cycling isn’t really safe, kayaking isn’t really safe, even walking has its dangers. Driving a car is one of the most dangerous you can do.
So if you enjoy roller skating or think you might enjoy it, it’s up to you to decide if it’s worth the risks. In my books, anything that I find fun and exciting is worth at least exploring with risk.
You should remember that there’s a very high skill component in skating. If you have never even ice skated you will have a very steep learning curve and roller skating might not be the right activity for you.
How your skate affects a lot how safe roller skating will be for yourself. If you use safety equipment and use common sense like never going faster than you can handle or going blindly through corners or a new street you should be just fine.
So if you can get over the risks and think you might have the necessary skills there are a lot of benefits roller skating can offer to your health.
Benefits Of Roller Skating
Roller skating is an excellent form of aerobic endurance exercise. It will help you improve and maintain your cardiovascular health and improve your oxygen uptake.
Because roller skating requires s very high level of balance skill, it’s excellent for maintaining and improving your balance. Balance is one of the most important skills for seniors because having a good sense of balance will reduce your likelihood of suffering falls.
Having a strong core is very important for posture, balance and preventing back pain and spinal injuries like herniated disks. Roller skating challenges your core muscles quite effectively.
That said it’s always important to remember that strength training is superior for improving strength and muscle mass when compared to any form of aerobic exercise.
Roller Skating Safety Accessories
If you do decide to get roller skates it’s very important to get some safety accessories as well. When you fall or crash with skates, there is nothing else there to protect your body than the safety equipment.
I shouldn’t even have to tell you how important wearing an appropriate roller skate helmet while skating is. The helmet is the only thing between your head and concrete in the worst-case scenario.
They say it isn’t the speed that kills you, it’s the sudden stop. If you hit something hard with your head, your brains will decelerate at an incredible speed. I’m sure you can imagine how dangerous this is.
Any kind of padding that gives your brain a few milliseconds more to slow down can literally be the thing between life and death. This is why wearing a helmet is so extremely important.
If you fall, there are two places that will take the brunt of the fall. Your knees are the first ones. While knees are not anyway as critical to protecting as your head, it’s nice to be able to walk after a fall.
Knee pads can mean the difference between a bruised ego and permanent disability due to crushed knee caps and torn ligaments. So please wear them.
Wrists are the second place on your body that will soften your fall. When you fall you will instinctually soften the blow with your hands. The wrists at the base of your hands are the point where most of the force will be felt.
Wrist pads help to protect your wrists from nasty fractures and asphalt bites. A pair of high-quality wrist pads can be the difference between a little discomfort and open fractures.
I hope you found my recommendations useful and if you do decide to get skates you will consider my recommendations. If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments section below.
There aren’t many seniors that have the courage to roller skate but if you have an athletic background, good balance skills and think skating is fun, there is no reason why you couldn’t roller skate as a senior.
Just keep in mind that the risks increase with age so it’s wise to invest in proper safety equipment, take things slow and use common sense.
That said, roller skating is great exercise that will help you stay healthy and active into older age. The benefits for your cardiovascular health, balance, and strength are obvious. Just keep safe so you can enjoy other activities as well!
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See you next time!