How to Size Your Hockey Stick

When trying to size an ice hockey player for a hockey stick, it can be difficult because every ice hockey player has their own personal preference as far as ice hockey stick size. There will be some ice hockey players that prefer to play with a short, light hockey stick while other ice hockey player prefer to play with longer, heavier hockey stick. However, in this article, we will attempt to address the beginning hockey player and give them an idea where to start in sizing their hockey stick.There are several different reasons you may want to use a longer or a shorter stick, a stiffer or a whippier one, and so on. A lot of these decisions can be reached by analyzing a few characteristics in the way you play ice hockey. You should take into account your ice hockey skating style as well as the position you play in ice hockey. Commonly, ice hockey defensemen favor a heavier, longer stick that makes it easy to endure rough play around the defensive net while also giving them length for poke checking the puck away from opposing ice hockey players. In opposition to this, may offensive players prefer to use a stick that is much shorter and lighter. A shorter and lighter stick gives an ice hockey player more freedom for quick release of shots and tighter, quicker stick handling moves. Another general thing you can look at is: Do you ice hockey skate upright or more hunched over? If you skate as more of a stand-up ice hockey player, you may want to go with a longer ice hockey stick to compensate, and then a shorter ice hockey stick if you skate low to the ice.

With all that said, I understand we probably have not actually helped you much in sizing your ice hockey stick, so let’s begin to actually size you. So you are in your local hockey shop and you have just purchased an ice hockey stick, and now they ask you to cut it. So where do you cut off the ice hockey stick? Well it’s pretty simple…

Stand straight up (in your shoes, NOT on your ice hockey skates), and hold the ice hockey stick up to you standing straight up as well. Where does the ice hockey stick come up on you? A very average height for an ice hockey stick while the ice hockey player is NOT on ice hockey skates would be for the ice hockey stick to come up to about the nose. For a young ice hockey player or a new ice hockey player it is almost a good rule to just cut the stick off at the nose. It is a very good starting ice hockey stick height for any beginning ice hockey player.

Now, as we talked about in the beginning of the article, some ice hockey players like a longer stick and some like a shorter stick. So, what does this mean? With the average ice hockey stick being up at a hockey player’s nose, a short ice hockey stick would come up to about a hockey player’s chin, while a long ice hockey stick would come up to about an ice hockey player’s eyebrows. For an ice hockey stick to be a shorter than the chin or any longer than the eyebrows, it may be a little extreme to actually play ice hockey with.

So if you are clueless with how tall your ice hockey stick should be, start with it being as tall as your nose when you are not on ice hockey skates. Then, as you get accustomed to playing ice hockey, make it a little shorter or longer, so you find what you prefer as an ice hockey player. Once you have sized your ice hockey stick, you will always be able to take into the hockey store with you when you buy a new ice hockey stick and ask them to cut it the height of the old ice hockey stick.

If you do not buy your ice hockey stock in a store, and you buy it, for example, online from a store like Hockey Giant, cutting the ice hockey stick down is as simple as using a hack saw. This task of cutting down the ice hockey stick with a hack saw is especially easy if you purchase a composite ice hockey stick. Also, when you order an ice hockey stick off of the Internet, you can usually bring it into your local hockey shop and they will most likely cut it for free or a very small fee.

One-Piece Composite Hockey Sticks

Currently, about 85% of players in the National Hockey League use one-piece composite ice hockey sticks. We will discuss composite one-piece ice hockey sticks in pretty great detail because they are by far the most popular ice hockey sticks on the market. They are extremely popular in the NHL and even more popular among youth hockey. Composite one-piece ice hockey sticks are much lighter and flexible than wood ice hockey sticks; however one-piece composite ice hockey sticks are much more expensive. On average, one-piece composite ice hockey sticks are about five times more expensive than wood ice hockey sticks and more expensive one-piece composite ice hockey sticks are up to ten times more expensive than the average wood ice hockey stick.

The construction of a one-piece composite ice hockey stick, as far the curve of the blade and the flex in the shaft, is so much more accurate than a wood ice hockey stick. With wood ice hockey sticks it is difficult for the manufacturer to produce sticks with consistent blade curve and shaft flex with every batch. There are also many manufacturers that will make custom one-piece composite ice hockey sticks for you. This usually brings the costs of the ice hockey sticks up for you and you usually need to buy several at one time.

Nike Bauer, for example, has a new program called “Nike Bauer ID” in which they produce custom ice hockey sticks for you. However this program is quite unique to anything its competitors are currently doing. With the “Nike Bauer ID” program, you can actually customize all the attributes of your one-piece composite ice hockey stick and the best part is you only have to purchase one!

You don’t need to buy the ice hockey sticks in bundles like competitors.One of the biggest issues with one-piece composite ice hockey sticks is that they can break very easily. It can be very frustrating when you break a $200 ice hockey stick. Unfortunately, unlike a lot of ice hockey equipment products on the market, the more you pay for a one-piece composite ice hockey stick, the easier it will be to break. This is because the less expensive one-piece composite ice hockey sticks are made with more fiberglass materials, and so they are a little bit stronger, however they are much heavier. The more expensive one-piece composite ice hockey sticks are made with very light carbon fiber materials and as a result they are more fragile.

The overall wear and tear of a composite ice hockey stick blade will last much longer than a wood ice hockey stick, but it is that random, unlucky snap you need to be worried about. Most big name ice hockey stick companies such as RBK Hockey, CCM Hockey, Easton Hockey, Mission Hockey, Nike Bauer Hockey, and Warrior Hockey all offer 30-day warranties on one-piece composite ice hockey sticks. The way it works is you visit the manufacturer’s website and find their ice hockey stick warranty page. Typically you fill an online form for their website and you mail your broken one-piece composite ice hockey stick along with your receipt back to them. They then mail you a new one-piece composite ice hockey stick with a stamp on the shaft that shows that it is the warrantied one-piece composite ice hockey stick.

When you are first looking into purchasing a one-piece composite ice hockey stick, it may seem a bit confusing or overwhelming due to the fact that it isn’t as easy as just ordering a certain kind of one-piece composite ice hockey stick that you want. You don’t just say to the guy at your local ice hockey shop, “Hey give me an Easton ice hockey sitck!” You need to specify many different attributes that are custom to you as an ice hockey player and the one-piece composite ice hockey stick itself. The one-piece composite ice hockey stick you choose will have many different options. So, for all you ice hockey stick newbies, let’s break down these attributes.

  • Senior, Intermediate, or Junior: The differences between these are the lengths of the ice hockey sticks, the widths of the shafts, and the overall shaft stiffness.
    Example: Senior
  • Manufacturer: Obviously, this will be the company that makes the one-piece composite ice hockey stick you are interested in buying.
    Example: Nike Bauer
  • Model Line: Almost all ice hockey manufactures produce different lines of ice hockey sticks at different price ranges.
    Example: Vapor
  • Specific Model: Then, within that model line, you will find the specific one-piece composite ice hockey stick that meets your needs and your price range.
    Example: XXX
  • Flex: This is how much the stick flexes, obviously. This is a very crucial aspect of your ice hockey stick. When you take any kind of shot with your ice hockey stick, it needs to flex. Think of it as sling-shot effect. If you let go a slap shot with all your strength and your stick never flexes, the shot will not be very hard. So, when you figure out what flex is right for you, you need to take into account a couple of factors. Your weight is very important because the heavier you are the more weight that is being thrust into the shaft, forcing it to flex. Likewise, how strong you are is very important as well. Also, you want to take into account your height. Keep in mind the flex rating is going to become stiffer, the shorter you cut your stick down. Every manufacturer has a different flex rating system, but one thing stays true for all manufacturers; the higher the flex rating, the stiffer it is. So a stronger, heavier player would use a 100 flex, which is much stiffer than an 85 flex, for example.
    Example: 87 Flex
  • Blade Pattern: The ice hockey stick blade pattern is also very dependent on the ice hockey player and their person preference. This is simply the way and to what degree the blade curves. There are many possible blade patterns in the world; however most companies stick to pretty similar patterns, just with different names. You have three basic kinds of curves. There are heel curves, mid curves, and toe curves. This is just where the curve of the ice hockey blade is located at. From there you have different degrees and amounts to which the blade curves, as well as open and closed curves. An open blade curve means that the blade almost begins to twist and begin to face slightly upwards. A closed curve means that the blade does not open up. It simply curves in and that is it. So, for example, a closed heel curve means that the blade begins to curve at the heel of the blade and then doesn’t open up. The different manufactures usually name different blade patterns by NHL player names.
    Example: Hossa
  • Handedness: We’ll end with the most basic attribute. Are you right or left handed? If you are left handed, it means your left hand is your bottom hand when you hold your ice hockey stick naturally. If you are right handed, it means your right hand is your bottom hand when you hold your ice hockey stick naturally.
    Example: Right Handed

So, to sum up, if we were going to buy the one-piece composite ice hockey stick we named in all of the examples above, this is what we would be purchasing:
“Senior Nike Bauer Vapor XXX, 87 Flex, Hossa Pattern, Right Handed”

Ice Hockey Sticks – Introduction

Up to this point we have discussed ice hockey skates in great detail, however now we will focus onto an equally personal and important piece of your ice hockey equipment, your ice hockey stick. If you don’t have an ice hockey stick you can’t play ice hockey. The ice hockey stick is actually needed in the definition of ice hockey. Without ice hockey sticks, it would just be full contact public skating. An average ice hockey player may only actually handle the puck for a couple minutes during an ice hockey game, however it is absolutely imperative that when you get your limited chance with the puck that you give yourself the best opportunity to pass, stickhandle, and shoot to the best of your abilities.Shopping for an ice hockey stick can be tricky. You need to find the right size, flex, and curve for your ice hockey playing style. As far as the size, almost all ice hockey sticks comes in a standard length depending on whether you are buying a junior ice hockey stick, an intermediate ice hockey stick, or a senior ice hockey stick. The differences between a junior ice hockey stick, an intermediate ice hockey stick, and a senior ice hockey stick is basically the flex and the width of the shaft. Junior ice hockey sticks usually have a slightly smaller blade as well. There are also other factors to consider when purchasing an ice hockey stick like the curve of the blade and the lie of the ice hockey stick. If you are new to ice hockey all this may sound overwhelming at first, but read through the rest of the articles we have on ice hockey sticks, and we will tackle one issue at a time.

There are a lot of different kinds of ice hockey sticks to choose from in today’s market. First of all you have wood ice hockey sticks and composite ice hockey sticks. When we refer to a wood ice hockey stick, we are talking about a full pieces stick made of wood, usually coated in some sort of fiberglass material. When we discuss composite hockey sticks, there are two main kinds of ice hockey sticks. You have one-piece composite ice hockey sticks and you have composite ice hockey shafts with replaceable ice hockey blades that can be made of either wood or composite materials. One-piece composite ice hockey sticks are definitely the most popular ice hockey sticks in today’s ice hockey equipment market. Popular ice hockey equipment companies such as RBK Reebok, CCM, Easton, Mission, and Nike Bauer produce more one-piece composite ice hockey sticks than any other kind of ice hockey stick. Composite ice hockey shafts with replaceable ice hockey blades seem to be produced less and less as the years go on.

The overall price range for ice hockey sticks vary. Usually, wood ice hockey sticks are somewhere between $20 and $40. A composite ice hockey shaft is usually between $50 and $150. Replaceable ice hockey blades for these composite ice hockey shafts are usually between $20 and $30 if they are made of wood and between $40 and $60 if they are made of composite materials. The most popular ice hockey sticks, one-piece composite ice hockey sticks range between $70 and $250. With all composite ice hockey shafts and one-piece composite ice hockey sticks, the pricing is fairly simple. Generally speaking, the lighter the stick is, the more expensive it is.

Ice Hockey Skate Brands

The market for ice hockey equipment is a very competitive one with many different brand names. You will also be surprised to know that a lot of these companies are actually merged together with each other. About seven years ago, Nike bought out Bauer. You may not have known that Nike has owned both ice hockey equipment companies for the last seven or so years. It wasn’t until 2007, that they finally merged their name. Now this ice hockey equipment company is known as Nike Bauer. Their logo is the classic Bauer sign with the Nike Swoosh drawn in there before the word Bauer. Similar to Nike and Bauer (Nike Bauer), in 2004, Mission Hockey merged with Itech Hockey. You may remember the names Jofa Hockey and Koho Hockey. These names have sort of faded away. They were both bought by RBK Reebok Hockey. You may still notice that your RBK Reebok ice hockey shin guards actually say Jofa on them. You may also be surprised to know that CCM Hockey is owned by RBK Reebok Hockey as well. Unlike Nike Bauer Ice Hockey, RBK Reebok hockey has not made it as publicly obvious that they own CCM Hockey. One may assume they are doing this because they want the average consumer to think they are two different hockey manufacturers. You will notice that RBK Reebok ice hockey skates and CCM ice hockey skates are very similar. They may look completely different, however the structure of the ice hockey skate itself is almost identical in most cases.Nike Bauer Hockey, Easton Hockey, Graf Hockey, CCM and RBK Hockey, and Mission Itech Hockey make some of the best and most well-known ice hockey skates. Keep in mind that there are a lot of ice hockey equipment manufacturers out there that you may have not heard of. These companies still make some great ice hockey skates. These would include Flite, Freesport, Ferland, Tour, and Rebellion.

It is definitely important for you to understand the similarities and relations between these various ice hockey manufacturers when selecting your ice hockey skates. For example, it will help you to know that CCM ice hockey skates are similar to RBK Reebok ice hockey skates. If you don’t like the way a CCM ice hockey skate feels, most likely you will not like the way a RBK Reebok ice hockey skate feels. You may want to try a completely different company such as Nike Bauer. Generally, Nike Bauer ice hockey skates and CCM/RBK Reebok ice hockey skates have a completely different feel. Also, it is helpful to know the relations of these ice hockey manufacturers because you may hate how flashy silver and black look of those CCM Vector 10 ice hockey skates look, but you love the way they feel. So, you may want to try the simple black look of the RBK Reebok 9k ice hockey skates, for example, because they will most likely feel similar. However a Nike Bauer ice skate will probably not fit your foot well.

Among the biggest ice hockey skate manufacturers pulling in the most profits, you have Mission/Itech Hockey, CCM/RBK Reebok Hockey, and Nike Bauer Hockey. If you have been playing ice hockey for a long time, chances are that you have already found your favorite ice hockey skate manufacturer. However, if you are new to the game of ice hockey, you may be wondering where to start with your first pair of ice hockey skates. The truth is you will never really know until you experiment with some different ice hockey manufacturers.

However, I can give you a very broad idea of where to start in the search for your new ice hockey skates. CCM Hockey and RBK Reebok Hockey tend to make ice hockey skates that are a little bit stiffer and wider. If you are more of a heavier player or you have wider than average feet, you may want to try a pair of ice hockey skates made by RBK Reebok Hockey or CCM Hockey. Nike Bauer ice hockey skates are generally know for how well the boot contours the average person’s feet. They do a very good job of making an ice hockey skate boot that is the most ergonomic in terms of foot shape. Mission Hockey produces two lines of ice hockey skates made for two different types of players. They have a one ice hockey skate made for smaller, more agile players. This is the Mission Fuel AG line of ice hockey skates that have a boot that is cut lower and built in two pieces that flex apart as you skate for that lighter, more agile player. They also make the Mission Fuel XP line that is designed for bigger players that need more stability in their skating. These are not low cut like the Mission Fuel AG line. These are some of the differences between CCM/RBK Reebok Hockey, Mission Hockey, and Nike Bauer. Keep in mind that all of these major ice hockey manufacturers make a top of the line skate that is in the $500 range, that is extremely light, and that is extremely stiff with a lot of support.

A little bit smaller ice hockey manufacturer based out of Canada, but a still a very popular one that has been around for many years is Graf Hockey. It is interesting that Graf ice hockey skates have become so popular over the years, yet their company remains small. It may be partly due to the fact that unlike RBK Reebok Hockey, CCM Hockey, Mission Hockey, Nike Bauer Hockey, and Easton Hockey, Graf Hockey is only popular due to their ice hockey skates. Yes, Graf hockey manufactures ice hockey pants and ice hockey gloves and several other ice hockey equipment products, however they haven’t become anywhere near the popularity of their ice hockey skates. What is so great about Graf ice hockey skates? To be honest, I have never used Graf ice hockey skates, so I couldn’t tell you for sure. However, I can’t even begin to tell you about how many ice hockey players I have crossed over the years that have sworn by Graf ice hockey skates. They are loyal customers who will never use ice hockey skates other than Graf ice hockey skates. Apparently they have a certain Graf hockey feel that no other ice hockey manufacturer has. One bit of knowledge I can tell you that is quite interesting about Graf ice hockey skates I have gained from working many years in a hockey shop is this: Graf ice hockey skates come in so many varieties of styles for different feet and different ice hockey players. Ice hockey manufacturers such as RBK Reebok Hockey, CCM Hockey, Mission Hockey, Nike Bauer Hockey, and Easton Hockey tend to make a couple of ice hockey skates in each price range. Graf ice hockey skates do not work like this. For example, they have about four different models of ice hockey skates for each price range they have. If you are interested in getting started with Graf ice hockey skates, I would suggest talking to a Graf Hockey expert that can explain the different Graf ice hockey skates to you. A very popular Graf ice hockey skate is the Graf 705 ice hockey skates.

Ice Hockey Skate FAQ

1. How frequently should I get my ice hockey skates sharpenned?
It really is all about personal preference, but you will start to notice that you are sliding around and not able to hold your edges while you skate. Also, a lot of times you will get a nick in your ice hockey skate blade from something on the ice like an opposing player’s ice hockey skates, ice hockey sticks, the boards, etc. If you notice your ice hockey skates sliding out in one specific place on your ice hockey skate blades, this means you have a nick there. Small nicks can usually be fixed by a skate sharpening.

2. Is it possible to cut yourself on the blade of an ice hockey skate?
Because your ice hockey skate blades are made with sharpened steel they are of course very dangerous. It is definitely possible to get a very serious cut from your ice hockey skate blades. You want to make sure that on and off the ice you are very careful with how you handle your ice hockey skates.

3. Is it all right to buy ice hockey skates that are slightly too big for a young ice hockey player in order to allow some room to grow?
It is all right, to a certain extent, to buy ice hockey skates that are a little big to allow for some growing room for a younger ice hockey player. However, they cannot be too big. If they are too big, the ice hockey skates will definitely hamper your child’s ice skating abilities. His or her feet will move around and cause many different pains.

4. How am I supposed to know if I am purchasing ice hockey skates that are the correct size? How should ice hockey skates fit?
When the ice hockey skates are tightened up, you should just be able to graze the plastic at the end of the skate with your big toe. Also, make sure your heel is secure enough into place to where it is not lifting up when you move. Make sure you do not feel any kind of pinching on the sides of your feet because these pains will not go away as the ice hockey skate is broken in.

5. How do you break in a new pair of ice hockey skates?
Well it would be a safe bet to start by heat-molding your ice hockey skates. This will mold of all the gel around your ankles and definitely speed up the breaking in process. Other than that, you will just need to go out and play ice hockey as hard as you normally would and try to forget that you are wearing new ice hockey skates. Before you know it, your new ice hockey skates will be broken in and you won’t even remember how it happened!

6. Ice hockey skates Vs Figure skates? What’s the difference?
Ice hockey skates are made for ice hockey and figure skates are made for figure skating. These are two completely different sports and thus two completely different kinds of ice skates have been produced. You will notice within our articles we do not simply write “ice skates,” we write “ice hockey skates” because there is indeed a difference. Ice hockey skates have much thicker padding to protect your feet much more with an ice hockey skate blade held in place by plastic holders. Figure skates are shaped more like a low-cut dress boot. The blades of a figure skate are not held on like an ice hockey skate blade is, the metal blades of a figure skate are actually attached directly to the boot. These blades are attached to the figure skate by screws unlike the plastic holder of an ice hockey skate, which is attached with rivets. Usually, figure skate owners buy the blades separately from the actual skate boots and then have them attached. The blades of figure skates and ice hockey skates are also sharpened and shaped much differently because the skating styles of the two sports are much different. Figure skate blades have a perforated edge on the front that look like spikes. They are designed so a figure skater can skate by pushing their feet straight back with each stride. Ice hockey skate blades are designed so ice hockey players can skate by pushing their feet diagonally with each stride. The point of ice hockey stride is to get you going as fast as possible while also giving you the most stability, while figure skating is merely about skating in a way in which you present a certain style for looks. I apologize to any figure skaters out there reading this and thinking I don’t know what I’m talking about, because what I have said here pretty much sums up everything I know about figure skating. What can I say? I’m an ice hockey player, and ice hockey is what I know.

7. If you lose any of the eye lids on your ice hockey skates where the laces go through, do you need to purchase a new pair of ice hockey skates?
If your ice hockey skate damage is merely minor with only a few eyelids missing, you can always take your ice hockey skates to a skate repair shop. It shouldn’t be too expensive to fix. A lot of actual hockey shops would not fix a problem such as this. It will be easier to find a place that specialized in fixing sports equipment in general, as this is more a of sewing kind of thing. The method of fixing this is not original to ice hockey equipment.

8. Do I really need the more expensive ice hockey skates? What’s the difference between the expensive ice hockey skates and the cheap ones?
It is quite simple, really. As ice hockey skates get more expensive, they get much lighter and much stiffer. This is the same for all ice hockey equipment manufactures such as RBK, CCM, Nike Bauer, Graf, Easton, and Mission. I’m sure it is obvious to anyone why you would want an ice hockey skate to be lighter in weight, but why would you want an ice hockey skate to be stiffer? Wouldn’t this make the ice hockey skates less comfortable? No. This is a common misconception when inexperienced ice hockey players walk into a hockey shop and wonder why anyone would pay $500 for ice hockey skates. The truth is when you buy a cheap pair of ice hockey skates, they lack the ankle support you need and this is why they are not as stiff. These ice hockey skates will always break down faster. An ice hockey skate that is stiffer and more expensive will not only last you much longer, it will give you the overall support you need.

9. Should you be using ice hockey skate guards?
If you plan to walk on any surface with your ice hockey skates on other than carpet or the mats in the rink, you will want to make sure you have plastic skate guards on your skates. Walking on cement with no ice hockey skate guards will definitely damage your ice hockey skates. Also, if you just want something to protect your ice hockey skate blades while they are in your ice hockey equipment bag, you can put ice hockey skate soakers on them that are made of cloth. Make sure you dry off your ice hockey skate blades with some sort of towel or rag before you cover them in any kind of skate guard for an extended period of time to avoid rusting.

10. Your ice hockey skate blade just cracked, what do you do now?
This is something that happens in the game of ice hockey every once in while. When this happens you need to find an ice hockey shop that has a rivet machine. Generally the plastic holder needs to be removed in order to change the steel, which is screwed into it. With some ice hockey skates you do not need to remove the plastic holders because of the way the steel is attached to the holders.

11. What kind of ice hockey skate laces should you use on your ice hockey skates?
If you find yourself retying your ice hockey skates several times during an ice hockey game, you may want to use waxed ice hockey laces so they will stay tight through out your entire ice session. Also if you have trouble keeping your ice hockey skates tight enough while you are in the process of tying them, going from the bottom of the skate up, you will want to use waxed laces as well. If you find that your ice hockey skates are too tight and don’t loosen enough as you skate, you will want to switch back to non-waxed ice hockey skate laces.

12. How do you keep your ice hockey skates from smelling bad?
If you have a problem with this, you can purchase an ice hockey equipment deodorizer. Febreeze has also always been known to do the trick.

13. Why is the color of ice hockey skates usually black?
It is not always that ice hockey skates are completely black. Back in the days when ice skates were made of purely leather, they were actually usually dark brown. Now, ice hockey skates are generally black with a combination of other colors. As the game of ice hockey has become flashier, a lot of ice hockey skates are now made with bright colors like orange and green mixed in with them. Even more flashy, several ice hockey skates coming out are predominantly silver. You will notice that a lot of ice hockey skates from Mission and RBK are predominantly black with orange or green. RBK also came out with the new RBK 9k Ice Hockey Skate for 2007 that is mostly white. It was no surprise that Nike was one of the first big companies to produce a line of silver ice hockey skates with the Nike Quest ice hockey skate line in 2004. For 2007 Nike finally merged their name and logo with Bauer to combine their products and thus changed the look of the new ice hockey skate from the Vapor line. The new Nike Bauer Vapor XXXX for 2007 is extremely flashy, while it is predominantly silver with some red mixed in.

14. How are you supposed to shop for an ice hockey skate if you do not know what position you are playing yet?
Generally, the position you play does factor into what kind of ice hockey skates you want to buy, however I feel this is more because certain types of ice hockey players play either offense or defense. So, you shouldn’t necessarily pick your ice hockey skates based solely on your position, but based on the type of ice hockey player you are. If you are a smaller player, that more relies on their speed and agility, you may want an ice hockey skate that is probably lighter and a little bit lower cut. If you are a big defensemen, your game may be based more around having a stable bass and being able to knock around opposing players. These larger ice hockey players usually will want to focus on ice hockey skates that have as much ankle support as possible in order to keep them upright and stable. Now by these generalizations, you can sort of begin to assume that a small fast ice hockey player will most likely play forward and a big, strong ice hockey player will be a defensemen. However, this is not necessarily the case. You may want a speedy, lightweight player at defense to help make offensive rushes or to be the first one back on the back-check. You may want a big, strong ice hockey player at forward to get in there and be a power forward. You may want them standing in front of the net or knocking guys around on the fore-check. The point is ice hockey skates are not to be chosen by what position you play, but who you are as an ice hockey player. What size are you? Tall? Heavy? Short? Light? How do you skate? Upright and tall? Low and leaning forward?

15. How long should you expect a pair of ice hockey skates to hold up before you need new ones?
This is determined by a number of factors. How often do you place ice hockey? Simply put, the more you skate on your ice hockey skates, the quicker they will break down. If you are playing competitively 5-7 days a week, a $500 pair of ice hockey skates may only last a season. What level of ice hockey do you play? If you are playing with children or maybe in a relaxed adult league, your ice hockey skates will not be taking as much abuse from pucks and hockey sticks and so your ice hockey skates will last a little longer. How do you treat your ice hockey skates? Make sure you dry off your ice hockey skate blades and cover them with skate guards or soakers between ice times. Also, don’t leave your ice hockey skates sitting outside in the heat as they can begin to lose their shape.

You will notice that as time goes on your ice hockey skates will inevitably break down. This means basically that you will lose the ankle support in your ice hockey skates. Sometimes when this happens, the side of your ice hockey skates will look like a piece of cardboard that has been folded and creased. Also, as times goes on, you will get cuts and damage to the boot, your blades may rust, and your eyelets may come out. However, when the ankle support goes, that is final straw.

16. Will it ruin your ice hockey skates to go skating on outdoor ice rinks or ponds?
No, you will not ruin your ice hockey skates by skating outside. This is a really good way to get ice time and play ice hockey in areas with cold climates, especially in today’s world where indoor ice time is so expensive. You will, however, notice that when you go back to the smooth indoor ice rinks your ice hockey skates will feel much duller. So, if you play ice hockey on outdoor ice and you have a big game coming up, make sure you sharpen your ice hockey skates before the game!

Ice Hockey Skate Accessories

Ice Hockey Skate Insoles

Ice hockey skate insoles are meant to control moisture and odor in your ice hockey skates as well as add comfort. They are placed on the sole of the inside of your ice hockey boot and sit underneath your foot. The ice hockey skate insoles that come with most ice hockey skates are generally pretty flat. If you have become rather flat footed from skating over the years, you can always buy orthopedic insoles to go inside of your ice hockey skates for added knee and back support. Ice hockey skate insoles are generally constructed with rubber and cloth. On average, ice hockey skate insoles run between $8 and $20. Orthopedic insoles may run a little more expensive.

Ice Hockey Skate Soakers and Skate Guards

Ice hockey skate guards, generally made of plastic, and are used to protect the blades of your ice hockey skates from nicks and other damage. You can usually use them to walk on surfaces other than mats or carpet. You definitely do not want to walk on your ice hockey skates on any other surface without plastic ice hockey skate guards on.

Then you also have what are called ice hockey skate soakers. These are generally made of nylon or rubberized cloth. These are designed merely to protect your ice hockey skate blades from damage while they are not in use, usually rolling around in your ice hockey equipment bag. They can also protect your other articles of ice hockey equipment in your bag from getting cut by your ice hockey skates blades. However, remember these ice hockey skate soakers are not protective enough for you to be walking on your ice hockey skates.

Remember to dry your ice hockey skate blades off before you place them in ice hockey skate guards or soakers for any extended period of time. Ice hockey skate blades are generally made with stainless steel, however this doesn’t mean that is it impossible for them to rust. So, take care of your ice hockey skate blades and dry them off after you use them. You can expect to pay about $10 for a decent pair of ice hockey skate guards and about $6 for a decent pair of ice hockey skate soakers.

Ice Hockey Ankle Guards

Whether you are an offensive ice hockey player who likes to get in front of the net and screen and deflect shots or you are a defenseman who likes to get in there and block shots from the opposing teams, you may be interested in using ice hockey ankle guards. You may have seen NHL ice hockey players such as Anaheim Ducks veteran Chris Pronger use these ice hockey ankle guards. These ice hockey ankle guards are usually easy to attach onto your ice hockey skates and are usually lightweight. There are a variety of ice hockey angle guards out there that come in different styles, colors, and sizes. They are constructed with plastic, foam, and certain synthetic leathers. You can expect to pay somewhere around $40-$60 for a decent pair.

Ice Hockey Skate Toe Guard

It is becoming more popular that ice hockey skates are being made with bare plastic toes, however many ice hockey skates are still made with cloth wrapping over the plastic of the ice hockey skate toe. For those ice hockey skates still made with cloth over the ice hockey skate plastic toe, you can ice hockey skate toe guard. This is a tar-like substance that comes with a little brush you can apply over the toe of the skate. It becomes hard so the cloth over the ice hockey skate toe does not fray. When you but ice hockey skate toe guard you will notice the bottle resembles a bottom of rubber cement that you use for arts and crafts. You can expect to pay about $7 for ice hockey toe guard.

Ice Hockey Lace Pullers or Hooks

You may have trouble lacing up your ice hockey skates because the laces hurt your fingers. Maybe your child is just learning to tie his or her ice hockey skates and can’t pull hard enough on the ice hockey skate laces without hurting his or her fingers. So, there are the ice hockey skate pullers or hooks. These are simple little accessories. Older model ice hockey skate hooks were simply metal hooks. In recent years they have made them lighter and more compact with a metal hook that folds out from a plastic handle. You can use one or two at a time, depending on your ice hockey skate pulling technique. You can expect to pay about $3 for ice hockey skate lace puller or hook.

Ice Hockey Skate Sharpening Stones

Have you ever been in the locker room with the rest of your ice hockey team and someone asks for a stone? Well they are referring to an ice hockey skate sharpening stone. Keep in mind that this not a stone that you use to actually “sharpen” your ice hockey skates. It is a rectangular stone that is used to take the burr off that develops on the outside of your ice hockey skate edges. This stone is most commonly used by the person who sharpens your ice hockey skates just after he has finished sharpening them on the machine to give them the finishing touch. As an ice hockey player you can also use these to prolong the time between skate sharpenings. You can expect to pay about $5 for one of these stones.

Ice Hockey Skate Laces Explained

There are different kinds of ice hockey skate laces. Some ice hockey skate laces are made simply with polyester, while others are made with polyester covered with wax. Waxed ice hockey skate laces hold the tension of the ice hockey skate much better when the ice hockey skates are laced up. You will find that when waxed ice hockey skate laces get wet, they will stay tight better. There is also less chance that they will stretch. If you are a frequent ice hockey player you will most likely find that your hands and fingers have begun to callous from tying your ice hockey skates. If you feel an extreme amount of discomfort you should try a different kind of ice hockey lace.

As your ice hockey skates heat up as you skate in them, you will notice that they expand a little on the inside along with your feet possibly swelling slightly. You may have to retie your ice hockey skates after you have begun skating in them. Be careful. If you tie them too tightly you may experience a loss of blood flow as you have cut off circulation. This can cause your foot to feel numb and uncomfortable. If you feel your ice hockey skates are frequently too tight and do not loosen enough while you play, you probably want to use ice hockey skate laces that are not waxed. If you find that your ice hockey skates always become looser as you skate and you are constantly feeling the need to retie them, you should try waxed ice hockey skate laces.

Also, if you have trouble tying up your ice hockey skates, because you cannot pull hard enough or keep the laces tight as you work your way up the boot, you may want to try waxed ice hockey skate laces.Ice hockey skate laces also come in a variety of colors. The most common ice hockey skate lace colors are obviously black and white. Surprisingly enough, yellow is also catching on in popularity. Young NHL stars such as CCM-sponsored Alexander Ovechkin are making these ice hockey “fashion trends” catch on.

Ice hockey skate laces also come in many different lengths. Not sure which length is right for your ice hockey skates? Here is a general outline of what ice hockey lace length you should purchase for what size ice hockey skate you wear.

  • Yth 8 – Jr. 3: 72″ ice hockey laces
  • Jr. 3.5 – Jr. 5.5: 84″ ice hockey laces
  • Sr. 6 – Sr. 8: 96″ ice hockey laces
  • Sr. 8 – Sr. 10: 108″ ice hockey laces
  • Sr. 10 – Sr. 13: 120″ ice hockey laces

You can expect to pay about $3-$4 for a pair of ice hockey laces.