In case you didn’t know, in-line skating or roller blading is a sport where participants skate with 2-5 wheels arranged in a line on each boot. Their are many different disciplines of inline skating such as: Speed, aggressive, freestyle/slalom, downhill, free-skate, artistic and hockey.
Inline speed skating is very similar to ice speed skating and is basically an all out race to the finish. Speed skates have large wheels usually of about 95 to 110 mm in diameter and skates are usually low cut and made of carbon fibre. Sub-disciplines in speed skating include indoor speed skating, which is very similar to short track ice skating, outdoor, which is similar to long track but with no lanes and more skaters on track and road which is like a marathon on skates and uses similar tactics to road cyclists.
Aggressive skating involves doing tricks and grinds on ramps and rails. Aggressive skaters with large “soulplates” and without the two middle wheels to allow for grinds and stalls. Aggressive skates use smaller hard wheels to allow for more stability. some aerial tricks include the flat-spin, the 360, and various flips which can all be varied with grabs. some grinds include the soul grind, the front side grind and the top soul grind.
Slalom skating involves doing tricks through cones usually spaced at 80 cm apart with competitions using 120 cm spacings as well. Top slalom skaters are seen to have absolutely crazy footwork and manoeuvre there skates with the greatest of skill. Slalom skates generally have 80 mm wheels with short frames for responsiveness. Skates usually fit tightly and have high cut boots. some skaters choose to rocker their wheels which is to have larger wheels on the inside than the outside which helps with manoeuvrability.
Downhill skating involves skater skaters skating at high speeds down a large hill or concrete bob sled track. it can be desribed as being very similar to alpine skiing. Skaters use advance breaking techniques, mainly slides like the parallel slide and magic slide. Skates are generally set up with 5, 90 mm wheels which helps with high speed stability. To increase responsiveness they usually have hard boot high cut skates.
Inline hockey is basically ice hockey on inline skates except body checking is forbidden and has only 4 skaters and a goal tender on court, where as ice hockey has 5 skaters. An extremely obvious difference is that inline hockey isn’t played on ice and is generally played on polished concrete or sport courts or even out on the street. This discipline is probably the first as inline skating was invented by ice hockey players who wanted to train in the summer.
That was a fairly brief intro to the many disciplines of inline skating. If you want to find out more just ask in the comment section, all though there’s a good chance that I won’t answer, so if I don’t just google it. Thanks for reading this rather long winded post and well done if you read the whole thing.