No one wants to get hurt while skating. So what can you do to help prevent injuries on eight wheels? Here are a few simple tips.
First, be sure you're fit to skate. It might seem obvious, but when was the last time you checked in with yourself to assess your basic fitness level? You'll want to be comfortable moving around for extended periods of time on your own two legs before you put on skates! If you're new to inline skating or have been taking a break from it for a while, don't skip this important step.
Next, check that your skates fit snugly and comfortably, and are appropriate for the type of skating you want to do (speed skating, recreational, aggressive, freestyle, etc). A good fit will help you avoid blisters and sores on your feet. Insoles can also improve fit and comfort. Don't have skates yet? Scope out the best places to buy skates in the Twin Cities.
Once you're ready to begin skating, don't forget to ease into it with a warm up (and later, a cool down). As with most fitness activities, it's especially important to warm up the muscles and get the blood flowing to avoid muscle cramps and muscle strains. You'll also improve your overall skating performance.
Lastly, if you're out on the trails, be sure to wear safety gear such as a helmet, knee and wrist guards. Most injuries from inline skating are due to falls, and you can be the best skater in the world but hit a random pebble or gap in the pavement and go flying. Don't risk it.