Can my skates be too sharp? (2023)

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How do I know if my skates are too sharp?

If you feel a little bite to your nail as you drag it across the edge – the edge is sharp. If your fingernail ever feels like it slides across the edge smoothly (i.e. as if the edge were rounded and not sharp) – this is an indication that the edge might not be sharp enough to skate on with confidence.

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Can you sharpen your skates too much?

Sharpen them too often and your blades will wear out prematurely. Not frequently enough, and you'll find yourself losing an edge when trying to turn, or being unable to control your skates.

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Are ice skates sharp enough to cut you?

The general consensus is that ice skates aren't sharp enough to cut your fingers off, and you can gently run your fingers along the blade without any worry. But when moving at high speeds, they can certainly cause pretty big cuts, so it's still important to be careful.

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How do you dull skates too sharp?

If you enjoy skating but find that your blades are too sharp, you can dull them down with a few simple steps. First, use a sharpening stone to smooth out any nicks or burrs on the blade. Next, use a honing rod to create a dull edge. Finally, use a steel wool pad to remove any residual sharpness.

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Is it harder to stop on sharp skates?

If you or your child is having trouble with stopping… then the skates are probably too sharp. A skate that is too sharp can certainly hurt a players ability to stop because before you stop, you need to slide and that is easier with a duller skate.

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How do I know if my skate blades are dull?

If you see a reflection in the blade's edge under a bright light, you need to sharpen your skates. A light touch of the fingernail down the length of the blade can detect any nicks or defects and check its sharpness.

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How many inches should I sharpen my skates?

The normal range for this is ⅜” to ¾”, although higher or lower hollows are occasionally seen. Typically, skate shops will do 1/2”, 5/8”, or 7/16” hollow as a default if they aren't given any specific instructions.

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Why do my skates chatter when I stop?

Chattering occurs when the edge being stopped on (inside or outside) has too much bite. Sometimes the radius of hollow is too small for the player, or "too sharp." More often it is because the skate was not centered on the sharpening stone resulting in one edge being "higher" than the other.

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What do most NHL players sharpen their skates at?

The higher the number, the flatter the cut. Players used to regularly ask for a 3/8ths or half-inch cut (pointy, high); now it's commonplace for them to use a much shallower hollow. Montreal's Jesperi Kotkaniemi skates on 11/16ths. NHL refs, for whom glide is paramount, typically sharpen at around an inch.

(Pavel Barber)
What sharpness do NHL players use?

Most skates are sharpened by cutting an arc in between the two edges, known as the radius of hollow (ROH). This is measured in inches. Hockey player and goalie skates are often sharpened with a ROH from 3/8” up to 1-1/2”.

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Do people get cut in speed skating?

Speed skating is a relatively safe sport, but skaters are not completely protected from injury. Dislocated shoulders, contusion, cuts and pulled muscles are some of the most common injuries.

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Is it bad to skate on dull blades?

Blades can be dangerously sharp when not properly sharpened, so always take the time to do it yourself. Skating with dull blades is a recipe for disaster, as you're much more likely to get injured. Even if your blades seem sharp enough, they may still need some extra TLC before hitting the ice-skate rink or street.

Can my skates be too sharp? (2023)
Is it easier to learn to skate with dull blades?

There are 2 common misconceptions with figure skates. The first is that it's better for a beginner to skate on dull blades. This is not only false, but dangerous. No one should ever skate on dull or unsharpened blades.

Why do skates slide so easily over ice?

The Chemistry of Water: Ice Skating | NSF - National Science Foundation. Speed skater glides on ice. Ice skating works because metal skate blades glide with very little friction over a thin layer of water on the ice surface.

How many hours does it take to break in skates?

For most people it will take about 12 hours to break in a pair of skates over the course of roughly a month. Start out with shorter skate adventures and build up to longer skate adventures.

Do new skates need to be profiled?

When you buy a new pair of skates they come with a factory grind on the steel. It is recommended that you get them profiled before skating in them. The most common profiles are 7 foot 9 foot 11 foot and 13 foot. Most players go with a 9 foot radius, but there are many options to consider.

What edge do I want on my skates?

Goalies generally prefer very large radius so that they can "kick out" without catching an edge. Figure: Most beginner and instructional skaters can skate on a 1/2" radius. A 5/8" radius will take care of most recreational skaters.

Do brand new skates need to be sharpened?

The quick answer is no, hockey skates do not come pre-sharpened when you buy them new. Even the best pair of hockey skates will need to be sharpened before you can let them rip out on the ice. However, most hockey skate manufacturers will put a hollow or contour on the blade before they sell the skate.

Is 5 8 or 1 2 sharper?

1/2 and 5/8 inch hollows are the common radiuses that you can get when having your skates sharpened. The latter has a duller profile and less prominent tips, while the former has a sharper feel and more pronounced tips. The 5/8″ hollow has a larger radius than the 1/2″ hollow, resulting in a duller edge.

How do you break in new skate blades?

Heat and Bake

One of the most popular in-store adjustments involves using heat. If they prefer not to do it at the store, some people use a hair dryer, which can be applied to the boot of the skate for 2-3 minutes before trying the skate on to mold it to their foot.

How many times can skates be sharpened?

There's no real limit to how many times you can sharpen your skates. It's very normal to sharpen them every 3-10 hours of skating. Elite players sharpen them after every 2nd or 3rd game. However the more you sharpen them, the quicker they'll wear down over time—and blades typically last 5-8 years.

What does 5 8 skate sharpening mean?

A more shallow hollow (5/8” or 3/4”) can benefit a heavier player – someone who doesn't need any additional help digging into the ice. The flatter cut allows for less energy to be lost into the ice, allowing for more glide and a greater top speed.

What does 1 2 mean for skate sharpening?

5/8″ (shallow) grind gives you more speed less grip. Good for kids and lighter skaters that aren't heavy on their feet. 1/2″ (standard) grind gives you a decent edge and is a good average to give to most players. 3/8″ (deep) grind gives a sharp deep edge for stopping quickly and good grip on the ice.

What does cross grinding skates mean?

Though it may not be required with every skate prior to sharpening, the purpose of cross grinding is to remove the old edge, which may have become dull and damaged, and to establish a grind pattern. Cross grinding acts as a blank canvas for a suitable lie and radius on your blade (similar to the contouring process).

Is it harder to stop on new skates?

Leather is stiffer on the new skate, the new boot hasn't conformed to the shape of your foot, and blades are at their original manufactured height as opposed to thinner due to being sharpened hundreds of times. So just get out on the ice at a local rink regularly and you'll be used to your new skates in no time.

What sharpening does Ovechkin use?

Some examples of ROH used by current and former NHL players are:
Wayne Gretzky – 1/2″Sidney Crosby – 9/16″
Joe Sakic – 5/8″Evgeni Malkin – 11/16″
Chris Pronger – 7/8″Jordan Staal – 5/8″
Mark Messier – 1″Sergei Gonchar – 1-1/4″
Paul Coffey – 1″ to 2″Alex Ovechkin – 1/2″

Do hockey players sharpen their skates between periods?

Each player also has his own preference as to how often his skates are sharpened. Some players may go a couple of games between sharpenings, while others may even request that their skates are sharpened between periods. Occasionally, a player will even change the depth of his hollow depending on ice conditions.

What skate cut does Ovechkin use?

Alex Ovechkin - 1/2 ″ - 13 mm.

Should I have sharpness high or low?

Turning the sharpness all the way down doesn't always yield the best picture quality as I've found that 1-2 notches above or below 20 percent of the sharpness value gives the best balance between clarity and accuracy.

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What's better high sharpness or low?

So, you want to set the sharpness value to be fairly low. Depending on what TV you have, you should set your sharpness to 0% or anything under 50%. If you notice a halo appearing around objects or if the image is too grainy, your sharpness setting might be too high.

Do speed skaters wear a cup?

According to NBC Olympics, speed skaters wear glasses or goggles to shield their eyes from the wind created by their skating at such a fast pace.

How many mph do speed skaters go?

How fast do speed skaters at the Olympics go? While short-track speed skaters usually reach speeds exceeding 30 mph, long-track speed skaters can typically hit over 35 mph. What makes speed in the sport so difficult is that athletes have to make sharp, quick turns while flying around the oval.

Can you sharpen skates at home?

Use a flat file to file the blade from toe to heel in a diagonal motion. Be sure the file is always perpendicular to the blade. Slide the flat file across a single blade in the same direction roughly 20 times, then perform the same motion in the opposite direction. Repeat the process for the other skate.

Do blades dull over time without use?

Understanding what can dull a sharp edge and avoiding it will help keep your knives performing at their best. Even under regular use, all knives dull over time. However, there are ways to extend the time between having to sharpen them. Here are six things that can dull your knives.

Can you ice skate with blunt skates?

Sharp blades provide a smoother and faster feel on ice because they have a better grip. You can glide and train better even with minimum effort. On the other hand, dull blades will just make your skating experience awful. You also increase the chances of injury.

Do you really have to wait 24 hours after baking skates?

Let the skate keep cooling and the materials harden again. It's recommended to wait 24 hours before using them but if you are in dire need of using them, putting them in your freezer for an hour can help speed up this process but you should not use them for 12 hours at the very minimum.

Do skates hurt at first?

It's normal to feel some pain when you start skating for the first time, especially if you have never skated before. The process of learning how to skate involves a lot of muscles and bones getting used in new ways. This can cause discomfort at first.

What is the hardest thing about learning to skate?

Whether they spent more time upright and cruising around, holding onto a trainer for support, or falling down, our Kindergarten and Grade 1 students have had a great time challenging themselves to improve their ice skating over the past month.

Is it easier to skate backwards or forwards?

Skating backwards is a lot harder than skating forwards, but with practice you can get the hang of it. The key to success when skating in reverse is keeping your balance and avoiding getting out of shape. When you skate backwards, always keep your eyes on where you are going and make sure that you don't fall down.

How do I know if my skates fit properly?

A proper fit for hockey skates should fit 1-1.5 sizes smaller than your street shoes. Your toes should barely touch the toe cap, while having no more than 1/4 inch of space in the heel. When you're finished lacing up your skates, they should feel snug with the foot resting flat on the footbed.

What do NHL players get their skates sharpened at?

Most skates are sharpened by cutting an arc in between the two edges, known as the radius of hollow (ROH). This is measured in inches. Hockey player and goalie skates are often sharpened with a ROH from 3/8” up to 1-1/2”. Figure skates are generally sharpened to 1”, and speed skates are COMPLETELY FLAT!

Is 3 8 or 5 8 sharper?

5/8″ (shallow) grind gives you more speed less grip. Good for kids and lighter skaters that aren't heavy on their feet. 3/8″ (deep) grind gives a sharp deep edge for stopping quickly and good grip on the ice. Good for heavier skaters who like a controlled edge.

Do NHL players bake their skates?

Some hockey players choose to heat mold their skates at home in the oven, and others take them to a pro shop.

Do you want skates to be tight or loose?

Generally speaking, the golden rule for proper skate fit no matter the brand or kind of skate is as snug as possible without being painful or uncomfortable, with the ability to still wiggle the toes up and down.

How tight should skates feel?

How tight should hockey skates fit? Hockey skates should be snug, but not uncomfortably tight. When unlaced, your toes should just barely touch the toe cap. When standing in your skates with them fully laced, you want your heel snug in the heel pocket, so your toes have a bit of space at the end.

How do I know if my skates are dull?

If you see a reflection in the blade's edge under a bright light, you need to sharpen your skates. A light touch of the fingernail down the length of the blade can detect any nicks or defects and check its sharpness.

Do NHL teams use Sparx?


Used by more than 25 NHL teams, the Sparx Sharpener produces professional results with ease.

What hollow do pros use?

There are several different types of hollows to choose from, but pro shops will commonly use 1/2” as their “standard” cut. The 1/2” hollow offers a respectable mix of glide and control for most players but adjusting the depth of the hollow can offer several benefits when done correctly.

How do you know if ice is OK to skate on?

The colour of ice may be an indication of its strength − clear blue to black ice is strongest, and likely the deepest. You should only skate on ice that is 20+ cm thick. White opaque or snow ice should be avoided. Grey ice indicates the presence of water and is unsafe to stand on.

What is Level 3 skating?

Level 3: Forward stroking (showing correct use of blade) Moving two foot turn (forwards to backwards, back to forwards) Backwards Swizzles (Lemons) Back two foot glide.

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