Gear and Wheels

To skate with us, you’ll need your own gear (or you may temporarily borrow gear from our gear lending program; we currently lend everything but mouthguards and helmets):

  • Mouthguard (most need to be molded in hot water before wearing; more skaters prefer the thinner SISU type mouthguards to speak and drink, as mouthguards must stay in at all times—they are for prevention of concussions, not really to save teeth.)
  • Properly fitting helmet (snug on the head and snug chin strap, preferably certified.)
  • Hard-shelled and snug-fitting knee pads.
  • Hard-shelled and snug-fitting elbow pads.
  • Hard-shelled and snug-fitting wrist guards.
  • Quad skates with toe stops** (skaters generally prefer boots that are sewed onto the base as opposed to glued, which will pull apart eventually. The cheapest skates are glued on—ask the person who is fitting you for clarification. A general idea of cost should be around $100 for a good starter skate. Skaters also tend to prefer a rubber toe stop as opposed to a hard plastic type.) We’re currently skating on a wood gym floor with roller derby lines.

**Toe guards are suggested for your skates unless you end up with a hard shelled toe. They keep your stitched toe seams from breaking open during knee slides and ruining your skate. Duct tape works in a pinch.

Wheels are incredibly personal, but a good derby wheel is preferred. Not outdoor wheels, as they’re too soft for the floor, and not a hard plastic wheel as they’re not for derby. Look for a derby wheel; most skaters start out with a softer and wider indoor wheel like the Radar Flat Outs in 88A durometer. As your skills grow, your wheel preference will probably change.

PFM alumna Harm Many has put together a few informational videos about gear and wheels. They’re full of useful information! Even if you’ve already bought your gear, you may find these helpful, especially if you’re considering buying another set of wheels. Enjoy!

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