Thursday, 12 October 2017

Getting started with skating on roller skis

By Keith and Heather Nicol
Trying balancing on grass to start
     Roller skiing is a perfect way to get ready for the cross country ski season but for the newbie trying it for the first time there are several things to consider. The main concern is safety since pavement is much harder than snow and you don`t an injury to put you out of the ski season.  Also you can quickly pick up speed on roller skis so you want to choose flat smooth pavement with little traffic. We suggest trying roller skis on grass to start so that you can get a feeling of balance and stability before you `hit` the pavement. Try balancing on a single ski and then hopping to get a sense of balance of roller skis.  
Look for smooth pavement to practice
Once you feel comfortable try the same drills on pavement. You will likely find that roller skis are tricky to balance on compared to skis since a rounded wheel is harder to feel steady on compared to a flat ski on snow.  Remember to wear a helmet and gloves while roller skiing and some people use knee and elbow pads. Next try skating on roller skis remembering to bring your feet under your body as well as swinging your arms for propulsion. Some roller skis have brakes which allow you to slow the speed of the roller ski until you feel more comfortable. We recommend Jenex roller skis since their braking system is easy to use (  The following video illustrates some of these concepts that will get you roller skiing with confidence.  This will make the transition to skating on snow much easier! 

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