How to Roller Skate Faster

We hope you love the products we recommend. We may earn an affiliate commission when you buy through links on our site. Learn more

When you first get a pair of roller skates, you imagine yourself zooming down the streets, weaving your way around obstacles. You think about the speed you could build up at a track and how much fun it would be to have the wind in your face.

Of course, if this is your first time on roller skates, you’ll have to temper your excitement for a bit. You first need to learn the basics and how to maintain balance. Then, it will be easier to understand how to build speed with less energy and still maintain control while roller skating.

Table of Contents

Learn the Basics for Roller Skating Faster

Starting with the basics and learning to balance. Even if you’ve been roller skating for a bit, if you aren’t entirely comfortable with your balance, you won’t be able to go faster. Start by practicing balancing on one foot in your skates while stationary. Alternate and stand on the other skate.

Once you are comfortable balancing on one skate while you aren’t moving, you can then start to practice the same techniques while moving. Push on one skate and have the other foot forward while remaining straight. This is similar to how you might push on a skateboard, for example.

Practicing this technique can help you with more than just your balance. It will also help you to improve your skating technique, confidence, and strength. Keep your knees bent slightly, and you should find that it’s easier to balance.

When you pump your skates, lean forward. Doing this will help you to learn how to apply force more efficiently with your skates. As you pump, have only one of your skates touching the surface. You’ll find that most skaters who are building speed only have one skate on the ground at a time. Practice gliding until it feels natural.

One of the other basic elements of skating you need to master before you start going too fast will be to learn how to stop. Know how to safely brake with your skates starting at slower speeds. Then, you can learn and incorporate the best ways to stop when you are going faster.

Practice some tricks, learn to use your front foot and back foot for different techniques, try skating backward, etc. Once you’ve developed these relatively simple skating skills, you will find that it’s easier to start doing various skating tricks and to go faster. Knowing the basics gives you more confidence when you go at high speed.

Beware of How Your Body Is Moving

A lot of new skaters end up twisting their shoulders and chest as they are pumping and pushing forward. However, this could slow you down, and it wastes more energy. Instead, the side motions should only happen below your waist.

When you do this, you’ll find that you can skate faster, and you won’t be wasting so much energy with all of that added motion. You should, however, move your arms back and forth. Don’t just let them hang limply at your sides or cross them over your body.

By moving your arms back and forth, your shoulders will not twist. It will also help you with your balance. Once you get to this point, you should see that you are starting to go faster than before. Watch speed skaters and derby skaters to see how they move their arms and how they hold their bodies.

Pay attention to your posture. Your entire core should stay tight. This includes your:

·         Stomach

·         Lower back

·         Middle of your body

Good posture will help with balance and building strength. If you find that you have a weak core, do exercises to help strengthen it. In general, exercises for strength and endurance will be invaluable for skaters. You’ll become stronger, which will help with pushing, and you’ll gain more endurance.

Adding Speed By Changing Skate Direction

When you are first learning, you can keep your skates pointed straight in the direction you want to go. You can then start to add more variation to how you skate.

Alter your strides to push in a diagonal direction away from your body. This will be more energy-efficient, and you will start to create a carving motion, which can help you build up speed. It’s a technique similar to what skateboarders and snowboarders use in their sports.

You need to continue learning the proper technique, or it will be difficult to skate fast. Even if you are in great shape and are an excellent athlete, until you have practiced the basic concepts of skating, it will be impossible to go as fast as you want.

Take Video

If you are having trouble, pay attention to the form you are using. You could even take a video of yourself skating to get a better sense of what you are doing right and wrong. You can then fix any bad techniques that you might have.

Choose Quality Skates

Today, you have a lot of options available when it comes to skates. There are traditional roller skates, inline skating options, speed skates, and more. Always make sure you’re choosing the best quality skates you can afford.

Find skates that feel good and fit your feet well. They should provide plenty of support for your ankles. Try to choose a respected manufacturer when you are choosing skates, and make sure they have good roller skate wheels. Bigger wheels can take more time to build up speed, but they have better roll time and require less effort to keep moving faster once you get rolling.

Find an option that will work with how you skate. Whether it’s at the roller rink or the street. Check out some of the options for artistic skates, but remember that performance is more important than aesthetics.

Remember Safety Gear

Going fast is a lot of fun. Like any sport, though, there is the potential for it to be dangerous. If you’ve never tried to skate fast before, you might have a tumble or two before you get used to things. Even experienced skaters will have a fall from time to time.

The mental pain is often worse than the physical pain. However, having all of the proper safety gear will help you to stay safe in case you fall. Below is a list of some of the most important safety gear to have.

List of Safety Gear

·         Helmet

·         Elbow pads

·         Knee pads

·         Wrist guards

·         Mouthguard

When you are purchasing protective gear, you will want to make sure that you are choosing from reputable brands. Additionally, if you fall and your helmet hits the ground or another object hard, you should replace it.

You Won’t Learn to Go Fast Overnight

While you want to be as skilled as your friend who roller skates faster, you can’t suddenly become a speed demon. It takes time, practice, and some patience to be a great skater. Pay attention to learning your skills and don’t try to take things too fast. Practice balancing, know how to control your body weight, practice on one leg, learn to develop more power, etc. It takes time to master the sport.

Don’t forget to return to the basics once in a while. Experienced skaters know the importance of keeping all their skills sharp, not just their skate speed. Make sure that you are continuing to maintain proper form when skating and that you can properly balance. Eventually, you will find that your speed starts to pick up, while you can still control your skates.