Best Ice Hockey Skates
Ice hockey is an incredibly fun sport that is growing in popularity! There are well over half a million people playing ice hockey in the USA and that number is increasing quickly.
If you are interested in playing ice hockey for the first time or you want to improve your performance, you will need a pair of high-quality pair ice hockey skates. Unfortunately, choosing the best ice hockey skates can be tricky, because there are so many models available and so many factors to consider.
This guide will simplify the process of choosing the best ice hockey skates by offering some useful tips. We’ll also showcase the 5 best hockey skates on the market. Let’s check them out.
Ice hockey skate basics
Before we provide you with some tips for buying Ice hockey skates, let’s take a quick look at the components they contain:
This boot is the part of the ice hockey skate where you place your foot. Manufacturers are constantly updating the kinds of materials used in the boot, to make skates lighter, safer, and more comfortable. Most boots are now made from advanced synthetic materials that perform well and are very durable.
The boot of an ice hockey skate is a bit more complex than a normal shoe. It contains the following parts:
This is the hard surface on the bottom of the boot.
The top part of the boot. Traditionally, the upper would be made from stitched leather, but most modern-day skates use advanced synthetic materials. Synthetic materials tend to be lighter and are quite durable.
- Toe cap
The forward section of the upper is called the toe cap. This is made from a hard material to protect the players toes during collisions or falls.
- Heel cup
As the name suggests, the heel cup wraps around the heel. It is harder than the upper and offers additional protection for your heels.
- Ankle padding and support
Ice hockey skates have a lot of ankle protection. That includes thick padding around and above the ankle.
- Protective tongue
Ice hockey skates have a tongue like a normal pair of shoes. The main difference is that the tongue in a pair of hockey skates is much thicker.
This section connects the boot to the runner. Most ice hockey skates will have a thick plastic holder, but some may use metal.
This is the blade of the ice hockey skate that makes contact with the ice. High-quality ice hockey skates usually have runners that can be detached from the holder. This allows you to replace or sharpen the runner very easily. Cheaper pairs have a runner that is permanently attached to the boot.
How to purchase the right size ice hockey skate
It is important to find a pair of ice hickey skates that you find comfortable. You will enjoy your time on the ice, be faster, and have much more stability. Here are some tips for purchasing the right size pair of hockey skates:
Consider your foot type
When fitting ice hockey shoes, the length and width of your feet are both important factors. If you have very narrow or wide feet, you will need to find a special pair of skates that is narrower or wider. Fortunately, finding the right pair of skates is easy thanks to ice hockey skate manufacturers labelling their skates well. Most manufacturers use the following labels:
- C or N is a narrow fit
- D or R is a regular fit
- E or W is a wide fit
- EE is an extra wide fit
If you are unsure about which kind of foot you have, compare it to your team mates and ask them what kind of shoe they wear. You could also try on a standard tennis shoe from a manufacturer like Nike or Adidas. If the shoe fits well, you have normal feet. If it is too tight, you have wide feet and if it is too loose, you have narrow feet.
Others factors that impact the sizing of your ice hockey skates include the width of your ankles, forefoot, and heels. You will need to find a pair of ice skates that are snug around these parts of your foot to maximise your effectiveness in the game. Most manufacturers provide details on how each boot fits the different parts of a player’s foot. For example:
- The Bauer Vapor has a regular fit heel, mid-foot and toe box.
- The Bauer supreme has a snug heel and mid-foot with a slightly wide toe box.
- Reebok ice skates tend to have a regular fit heel and mid-foot with a wider toe box
- The Easton Stealth has a regular width heel with a slightly narrow mid-foot and toe box.
- The CMM Tacks has a snug heel, mid-foot, and toe box
- Ribcor has a narrow heel with regular mid-foot and toe box.
Take your time and choose a skate with the fit that is appropriate for your unique feet!
Tips for choosing the best ice hockey skates
Here are a few other tips to help you find the best pair of ice hockey skates!
Consider your position and playing style
The position you play on rink and your preferred playing style can determine which type of skate fit works best. If you are an aggressive player that is always chasing the puck and constantly moving, you would do best with skates that are super lightweight and responsive. They should have a very rigid and flat foot plate to maximize power transfer. If you are a player who is more defensive and strategic, you can use skates that offer a bit more protection for your feet. If you are playing as a goalie, you will need a pair of ice hockey skates that are very durable and protect your feet well.
Consider the price of your skates
If you are a beginner to the game or on a tight budget, look at skates in the $50 to $100 price range. Skates in this price range are affordable, but durable enough to give you many seasons of great performance. If you are a keen player, look at skates in the $100 to $300 range. They will use sturdier materials, have excellent durability and really improve your performance on the rink. Players who participate in competitive games can spend much more on their ice skates — usually in the $300 to $1,000 range!
Consider the materials the skates are made from
Most modern ice hockey skates are made from synthetic materials, because they are so lightweight and durable. The most common materials used to make ice skates include molded plastics, leather, synthetic leather, and ballistic nylon.
Basic plastic ice skates are fine for casual players, but they do not offer the same level of mobility as other types of skates. More expensive skates will use advanced polymers with microfiber sections. Leather does work well, but it is heavier than most synthetic materials. Think about both the performance of the skate and its durability when looking at its materials.
Five of the best ice hockey skates
Here are five of the best ice hockey skates on the market. They are well made, affordable, and guaranteed to give you years of use.
Bauer Supreme S150 Senior Ice Hockey Skates
Bauer’s Supreme S150 ice hockey skates are ideal for a keen amateur player. They use a Trueform tech PU boot, which locks the heel and ankle into place. This system really helps the player transfer a lot of power into their skates quickly. Other features include a hydrophobic microfiber lining, memory foam ankle pads, FORM-FIT EVA footbed, and thick 2-piece tongue. They come with a TUUK LIGHTSPEED Pro Blade Holder and TUUK stainless steel runner.
CCM RibCor 50K Ice Hockey Skates
This is a more expensive pair of ice hockey skates designed for competitive play. The CCM RibCor 50K ice hockey skates are a premium product and one of the newest entrants in the CCM RibCor product line. They are designed to be very comfortable out of the box and offer excellent protection for your feet.
They are packed with features including a FlexCore inner core that is incredibly stiff. This stiffness makes it easy to suddenly drive power into your skates and push forward. There is an inflatable bladder surrounding the heel, so you can easily adjust the feel of the boot. The ankle support provided by the boot is also excellent, with thick memory foam surrounding the ankle. The Griptonite Footbed makes the boot even more comfortable.
The outsole is made from a Carbon Composite material. It attaches to a SpeedBlade 4.0 blade holder and SpeedBlade black stainless steel runners. These skates are a fantastic choice for a keen player who is competing in a team.
American Athletic Shoe Men’s Ice Force Hockey Skates
This is a very affordable pair of skates that is perfect for someone who occasionally has a casual game with friends. Despite being under the $100 mark, they are well made and will survive in rough conditions.
The multilayered boot construction helps to provide these skates with excellent durability. The synthetic materials used to form the boot are put together surprisingly well, delivering excellent performance despite being a budget ice skate. They have a nylon holder with Performance Edge carbon steel runner. They are a great choice for someone new to the game!
CCM JetSpeed 260 Ice Hockey Skates
This is another excellent pair of budget ice hockey skates from CCM. The CCM JetSpeed 260 ice jockey skates are designed for aggressive players who like to use speed to their advantage. They are well-made, durable and very lightweight.
The boot is made from a durable outer shell with synthetic mesh sections to reduce weight and increase comfort. The heavy duty microfiber liner and low profile injected outsole are also very comfortable and designed for speed. These skates come with a SpeedBlade PRO holder and runner.
CCM Jetspeed FT1 Ice Hockey Skates
This is an expensive pair of ice hockey skates designed for the very keen amateur player who plays competitively. You will quickly understand why these skates are more expensive than the others — they include features normally reserved for professional-level ice hockey skates!
The CCM Jetspeed FT1 ice hockey skates use the RocketFrame composite quarter package that includes L1teframe technology. This is a very lightweight combination that is very responsive to quick changes in acceleration or direction. The Totaldri Pro line with Durazone abrasion protection is extremely comfortable and helps you avoid injury when spending a long time in the skates. It also comes with very thick ankle padding that offers excellent protection. It comes with a Speedblade 4.0 holder and Speedblade Hyperglide runner. This is an excellent choice for anyone who is committed to ice hockey!
Thanks for reading our guide to the best ice hockey skates. Make sure you check out our best boxing shoes as well.