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Sports: In-Line Skating

[ Background | Equipment |Where ]

Background

Bladers  on bike path

In-line skating (often called "rollerblading", which is the trademark of the industry leader, or simply, "blading") actually began in 1823 in London, England, though it didn't catch on at the time. In-line skating in its modern form began as a way for hockey players and cross-country skiers to train in the summer, and exploded in the early 1980's because of the newer soft polyurethane wheels. Some variations include roller hockey, slalom racing, trickblading, and freestyle blading.

In-line skating is a good way to condition and tone your butt, quads, calves, hamstrings and abdomen.

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Equipment

In-line skating equipment begins with the boots. Most blades now have a pivoting heel stop, with varying mechanisms for quick braking. There are also several fastening systems, including laces, Velcro and buckles. Try them on for comfort, and make sure you can easily stop. Ask if you can take them for a quick spin, outside or around the store.

Everyone needs a helmet, elbow pads, wrist protectors and knee pads. Don't be tempted to blade without helmet and pads because falling is inevitable. And since most blading is done on asphalt or concrete paths, they are your only protection from serious scrapes and cuts. If you already have a helmet for your bike, you can use it for blading.

NOTE: If you are using the in-line skates for rollerhockey, tell the salesperson. Rollerhockey skates have a different set-up, a stronger chassis, and different wheels than recreational in-line skates.

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Where

Whitby Roller Skating Club 905-721-2039
Oshawa-Durham's summer weather and terrain provide good conditions for blading. Just be cautious of traffic or pedestrians (they have right of way on paths). Caution: in wet weather, your wheels and brakes can become very slippery and dangerous.

  • Waterfront Trail between Brock Street in Port Whitby and the GM Office, to the south of the 401.
  • Oshawa Creek between Lakeview Park to Midtown Mall near King Street (1.5 km north of Hwy 401) has a paved pathway through natural areas and parkland.



    Here are some inline skating facilities around Toronto (from west to east):
    • Scooter's Roller Palace (Mississauga)
      At 2105 Royal Windsor Drive, Mississauga
      905-823-4001
      Indoor roller rink. Rentals and lessons available. South of the Clarkson GO station, just west of Southdown Rd.

    • The Rinx (Toronto)
      At 65 Orfus Road, near Hwy. 401 & Dufferin, just west of Yorkdale.
      416-410-RINX (7469) or 1-888-829-1067
      Former ice rink turned indoor roller rink. Skate rentals available.

    • Cummer Skateboard Park (Toronto)
      At Cummer Park Community Centre, 6000 Leslie St. (half way between Finch and Steeles)
      416-395-7803
      Toronto's first concrete skateboard park, for boarders, bladers and BMXers. Open dawn till dusk, no supervision, use at your own risk, free admission and free parking.

    • City Of Toronto Arenas/Rinks
      Call Parks & Rec. at 416-392-1111 for dates and times.
      Public inline skating in the Spring/Summer sessions at some indoor arenas.
      · EAST: McGregor Park Rec. Centre (416-396-4023)
      · NORTH: Oriole Comm. Centre (416-395-7969)
      Many of the city's outdoor ice rink pads can be used in the non-winter months for inline skating.

    • Coachlite Rollergardens (Oshawa)
      88 King St E., at McMillan.
      905-429-2211
      Indoor roller rink. Rentals and lessons available.


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