I think it is fair to say that:
It’s difficult to play at your maximum potential without good quality Hockey Skates…. Or is it?
There’s only ONE problem. Finding “Good” skates isn’t an easy job.
Finding good hockey skates can be a tough task. You need to know a number of things about your feet and how you play. You may be asking questions like ‘what hockey skates should I buy?’ or ‘what size hockey skates?’ or even ‘what are the best hockey skates?’
These are common questions and that’s why we here at What All The Pros Use take pride in this guide to help you find the right skate and give you a list of options to go off of. To learn more in depth about hockey skates check this out; hockey skates wiki. If you are in a bit of a hurry, then here are our featured recommendations which include three skates where you can’t go wrong.
We hope you find this guide helpful as always and would love to answer your questions if you would comment below! Also check out other articles like our 10 weird hockey helmets which actually help prevent concussions.
If you are looking for junior hockey skates, then save yourself heaps of time and check out our Ultimate Junior Hockey Equipment Buying Guide for 2019.
Also don’t forget to use our exclusive Hockey Monkey promo code: PROS15 which will get you 15% off all the equipment sitewide.
Hockey Skates Buying Guide
When looking for a new pair of skates or especially your first pair, you need to take a few things into consideration. First off what size you need, then your fit, style of play, body type, and preference. Finding the most comfortable ice hockey skates is going to take you knowing all of these for yourself. It’s all about comfort and the performance you get out of the skate. Every skate has it’s own unique advantages and disadvantages, and fits different types of players. So lets get into how you can figure out what fits you best.
How To Buy Hockey Skates
What Size Hockey Skates Do I Need
Let’s cover how hockey skates should fit and what you need to know to get the right size.
A proper fit for skates is 1-1.5 sizes smaller than your typical tennis shoe size, however all brands are different so there is no universal fitting chart for every skate out there. So when your purchasing skates, you should never judge entirely off your shoe size. The best and quickest way to find out is to start trying on skates at your local vendor before buying hockey skates online to get exactly what you want. Also while fitting you should wear socks you’d normally wear while skating to get just the right fit. How hockey skates should fit is snug but flexible.
What Is The Right Fit for You
This is something you have to test and figure out, luckily we have some good techniques to accomplish this.
The Pencil Test
Once you put on your skates, rather than tie them up, pull the tongue out and place a pencil or pen across the eyelets, appropriately three eyelets down. If the pencil or pen lies flat without moving around, your skates have good depth. If the pencil or pen hits your foot without touching both eyelets, your skates are too shallow.
The Finger Test
After lacing your skates, lean forward and bend your knees like your in a hockey stance. Then reach back into the heel of your skate to see how much of a gap there is between you heel and the skate. If you can slide more than on finger, the fit is not going to lock your heels and ankles to the correct places and you should try something else until you can only put one finger in there.
This may sound simple but just walking around in a pair of skates will give you a good idea of what the skates will feel like.
These are some simple ways to tell what kind of fit you need to suit your feet. There are three types of fit just like our recent Best Hockey Gloves 2019 we just covered. Let’s go ahead and look at what these different fits are. We also have a more in depth review on this subject here Bauer Skates Review
Anatomical fit: this is the most natural snug fit there is out there.
Classic fit: The wider foot fit, typically for bigger feet.
Tapered fit: narrow foot fit, lightweight.
What’s Your Preference
There’s a lot of different thing to look at when it comes to preference. When determining your preference, your biggest concern should be hockey skates with the best ankle support. This is where key sources of power coming from like strides and transitions. We will be sure to list those in the reviews below. Next should be quality, the quality of your skate determines a lot of things. Durability, performance, and comfort are the main three of this subject and all matter tremendously. We will get into all the specifics in the reviews about this to help you make a better educated decision.
Proper Way To Lace Hockey Skates
A lot of my friend’s get this wrong and it’s a lot more important to get right than some think. Neglecting to lace your skates the right way can cause your skating to suffer tremendously. I was luckily taught the right way early on and i’m really glad I did. In this video they will show you the proper way to lace hockey skates.
Another thing to keep in mind is tying your skates correctly. The proper way is to start at the bottom and making sure the bottom is super tight. The top should be tight as well but not nearly as tight as the bottom. The reason for this is because you want your feet to stay put so there’s no wiggle room and you want flexibility in the upper part of the skate. Where you end the laces is preference. Hockey skates tongue in or out is also a preference, but I highly recommend testing these things out as you could find that these options are more comfortable.
Hockey Skates Sharpening Guide
When it comes to sharpening I generally have someone else do it because I don’t trust myself. There are alternatives of course to this, you could do it at home and save a ton of money in the long run. There is a company that makes quality skate sharpeners called E-Z sharp. You can get their smallest model for $150 if your a first time buyer, below is the sharpener itself. Remember doing this could end up saving you a lot of money. I’m really considering buying one myself, If your interested here’s the link to their website! E-Z Sharp. But here is our article on unusual ways to sharpen your skates at home. Also knowing when to sharpen hockey skates is important. If you step into a game with dull skates, you will find it’s going to be extremely difficult and you’ll tire out more easily. Just keep that in mind.
Recreational Ice Skates vs Hockey Skates
We get a lot of questions about this and it’s surprisingly talked about more than you’d think. ‘what is the difference between hockey skates and figure skates?’ Well i’ll tell you there is a huge difference. The layout and how you control them is totally different. I’ll go ahead and say if you are a hockey player, hockey skates are 100% the way to go. The layout of a hockey skates is for all out performance and comfort. A recreational skate is not going to give you the proper support you need for as much transitioning and stopping you will go through. The hockey skate is also way more durable and can stand up to more beating.
Top Rated Hockey Skates
We hope this hockey skates guide has helped you tremendously and you have learned something new about skates and how to go about purchasing them. That’s what we’re all about here at what all the pros use is not only reviews but helping you choose the right one.
You may ask ‘what are the most comfortable hockey skates’ or ‘which hockey skates to buy’. We will answer these for you in what we believe are the best ice hockey skates.
You can also save yourself a heap of time by clicking on the name of the skates in the table below which will take you down to the review instead of scrolling all the way down!
So without further a do let’s tell you the best hockey skates of 2019!
Best Hockey Skates of 2019
|1. BAUER Vapor X700||Pro-Level Tech-Mesh Nylon||941g||Check Price|
|2. BAUER Nexus 1N||3D-Lasted Curv||811g||Check Price|
|3. BAUER Supreme S170||3D TrueForm||909g||Check Price|
|4. CCM Tacks 9070||RocketFrame Composite||855g||Check Price|
|5. Bauer Nexus N2700||3D-Injected Core||795g||Check Price|
|6. BAUER Vapor 1X||Silver Curv||840g||Check Price|
|7. CCM RIBCOR 50K||RibCor Elite||918g||Check Price|
|8. CCM Tacks 3092||Synthetic Form||767g||Check Price|
|9. BAUER Supreme 1S||3D-Lasted Titanium Curv||815g||Check Price|
|10. CCM Jetspeed FT1||RocketFrame Composite||772g||Check Price|
1. BAUER VAPOR X700
With these skates you can stride very quickly and can execute your shots effectively. If we see the construction then there is the Bauer’s Fiber Composite+ for a much stiffer boot as compared to the previous versions. For the heel, you are going to see the Bauer’s X-rib pattern which will add an extra layer of stiffness to the boots. But, you will feel very comfortable and lightweight while wearing these skates.
I have personally loved the construction and design of the skates. As the Bauer team has done a tremendous job here. They have used a Pro TPU outsole between the boot and the holder. Which means better energy transferred from the boot during the play and you can take maximum power out of your strides. The moisture wicking properties of the Bauer Vapor X700 are very good as well. The Bauer’s Hydra Max liner will keep your foot nice and dry during the game. Also, the Form Fit tongue is a 3-piece felt tongue that is very helpful as it will help move away the high impact shots. The foams used in the padding of the Form Fit tongue will provide greater impact protection along with preventing lace bite.
The Vapor fit is known to have a close feel to the feet, and if this is your type of fit, I recommend you USE IT. In today’s sport’s, everything’s about efficiency, and you want something that will give you the advantage in that sense.
2. BAUER Nexus 1N
Bauer skate lineup comes to the Nexus and the Bauer Nexus 1N has that comfort and classical fit that you are hoping to get. Bauer’s Nexus range is amazing in many ways and they have a reputation of providing high quality skates. Here we have the Bauer 1N skate in depth review that will give you all the important information about the incredible skates.
Bauer 1N Skates Technology
The Bauer 1N skates are loaded with some really amazing features and it is packed with latest in skate technology. It has a 3D lasted thermoform of all quarter panel that will provide you a really nice close to the foot fit. The Bauer speed plate insole is very stunning too as it will fit perfectly to your foot while molding. The transfer energy is another factor that is useful as it will also help you transfer your energy from skates to ice. The 37.5 liner that is integrated inside the skate will keep your foot nice and dry. The LS four steel will give you the three millimeters extra height that will allow you to improve your performance on the ice court and it will help you turn swiftly. The Bauer 1N has the memory foam ankle pads that help mold to the ankle over time. This also provides an extra layer of comfort and fit to the players.
Bauer 1N Skates Fit – Is It Comfortable?
Well, this is a really nice and comfortable skate right from the start. It has that traditional fit
and it will help you step up your game by providing outstanding comfort. The skate is very light weight as well and this size guard suggests it is wider and taller than the Bauer 1X and the Bauer 1S. Overall, Bauer is aiming to increase the fit of their latest skates and they have really enhanced the performance in their latest skate like the Bauer 1N.
These skates are designed to feature the most responsive control and the Nexus 1N with the use of their 3-D lasted Curv composite provides exceptional comfort because of the thermoforable nature. The Nexus 1N skates are more responsive and comfortable. As mentioned earlier, the 1N skates provide incredible energy transfer as well that no other skate provides.
Technology That Keeps Your Foot Dry
No doubt the technology used in the Nexus 1N will make a huge difference when it comes to comfort, fit and dryness factor. The 37.5 technology liner is an amazing technology that will keep the feet dry and locked in place for better control. Both comfort and performance matters a lot for a hockey player and with this technology both the factors are highly valued and looked after.
The Injected Lacing System
The injected lacing system is also featured in the 1N skates that will provide more forward flex and enhanced stability on the ice. Everyone was waiting for this update as it will provide more control over the lacing fit and this is a huge plus point of the Bauer 1N skates.
3. Bauer Supreme S170
A lot of complex engineering has gone into the production of Bauer’s Supreme line, resulting in explosive power and unmatched stability. The Bauer Supreme 170, for instance, is packed with some of the latest industry innovations.
Bauer Supreme 170 offers an extremely comfortable and anatomical fit to players, something that which Bauer is very popular for. Apart from being known for very comfortable skates, Bauer skates are also very notable for their unmatched stability in the arena.
The S170 features a relatively wider forefoot, with 0 negative space in the ankle and heel, resulting in a unique level of comfort. This allows players to transfer energy very efficiently.
On the inside of the feet, there is an ankle padding of a lightweight and comfortable memory foam, designed to the natural foot shape. At the same time, a 3D lasted tech mesh quarter package is used, which provides a 360 degrees fit because of its heat molding characteristics.
At the same time, there is a two piece felt tongue that contains a metatarsal guard of high density, for unmatched protection from lace bite. This allows players to go as aggressive as they want to, without any injuries.
4. CCM Tacks 9070
Ok so with these skates, we are really starting to see a few more bits of elite-level technology being introduced by CCM.
Upgrades in technology that provide a more anatomical fit
So, unlike the 3092 we mentioned earlier, these skates use the RocketFrame composite with SpeedCore II technology. With this pro-level spec, we start seeing a huge jump in stiffness which means tons of more power out there on the ice while also being so ultra-lightweight.
If you know about the 9060 skates, then you will know about their Metaframe technology which is basically the way CCM mold their skates. They have brought these up into the 9070s.
This gives it a much more anatomically correct shape right out of the factory along with feel and boot shape compared to the really traditional boxy skates they had with some of their other skates… So great improvement there!
One thing we also noticed is the eyelet angle and how much more anatomically correct it follows the pattern of your foot. These eyelets are also way more durable with the dual stitching that CCM have used which is also in the tendon guard!
Elite level protection and super comfort at an affordable price
At the top of the quarter package you’ll see some nice soft foam. Obviously really stiff boots can cause high ankle abrasions so this soft foam will help alleviate that.
Then into the tongue of the boot, it’s a 7mm very thick felt along with really thick foams injected down through the centre so it honestly has that pro level feel. All this is just working together to give you awesome comfort as well as great protection from any impacts that can happen during the game.
You have a HD micro fibre liner which is more durable than what we’ve seen in the rest of the line. It also helps to wick away moisture to keep you dry and really helps to push that moisture down through the insole and out the outsole.
In terms of fit, it belongs to the medium volume fitting family Meaning it’s going to have a standard fit in the toebox as well as the overall depth of the skates.
Also quick shout out to the looks… You have to love the graphics package!
Coming down to the holder, we have the SB stainless steel runners sitting in the SB 4.0 holder. This features SpeedRib technology that really helps to improve the energy transfer process by adding stiffness and rigidity to it so you’re not losing as much power as you would if it was more softer and forgiving.
5. Bauer Nexus N2700
The all-new Bauer Nexus N2700 is a wonderful choice for the intermediate level players who want a variety of high-end features in a high volume hockey skate. The Bauer Nexus N2700 offers a great amount of stability, that which any intermediate player or a casual league warrior will appreciate! At the same time, it also offers a very secure fit allowing players to perform at their max.
The N2700 quarter package features a core that is 3D injected, with Trueform tech PU. This 3D core is designed to fit right into the natural foot curves resulting in a very anatomical shape. At the same time, the stiffness of these hockey skates, despite being a mid-level skate, is highly impressive. As a result of this, skaters are able to unleash their full power.
The inside of Bauer Nexus N2700 features a 40-oz, two-piece black felt tongue with a moderate level of center thickness. At the same time, a metatarsal guard made of plastic is inserted in the tongue for protection against slashes, pucks, and lace bite. As a result of this, players can play as aggressively as they want, without the risk of any foot injuries.
At the same time, the moisture-wicking microfibre in the interior along with memory foam pads for ankles keep the feet dry and very comfortable throughout the game.
6. BAUER Vapor 1X
The Bauer Vapor 1X Skates will cover you with every demand and need of yours. It has so much to offer that it will definitely meet the professional standards of the players. It is built upon the concepts of the 1X line made back in 2015 and it has very good improvements and advancements to offer.
The skate construction is very good as Bauer have used the ultra-lightweight Curv composite material in it. So, you will feel very lightweight to the point where you will almost forget they are on your feet. Also found that when the skates were fully laced up, there was no creasing at all which was good.
There is X-rib pattern and ankle lock design in order to keep the skater’s foot in place and ultimately giving the skaters more fit and really good depth. There is Bauer’s Comfort Edge padding used in the top of the 1X skate as well. The construction and new design are so good that the skates will act like an extension of the foot because of that new locking feature. The Bauer has also introduced the Lock-Fit Pro facing and liner along with the Flex-Pro tongue.
These may not be the best looking skates in Bauers line but once baked, they are known to feel very snug almost bespoke to your feet. Protection they are as expected for a top end skate and absorb alot of the impact very well.
7. CCM RIBCOR 50K WHITE
When we opened these, Mike couldn’t wait to get these on!
We couldn’t help but see why these innovative skates have caught a lot of eyeballs. They made a huge noise in the market when they were released because of its impact on the CCM Hockey lineup. It also completed the transition from Reebok to CCM for the Ribcor line.
This is one of our favorite products available on the market right now. From its visual look to the new technology to the performances, this skate has everything covered for you. It also has an amazing black base with the stylish chrome highlights. The SpeedBlade black stainless steel runners are another exciting feature added to the Ribcor 50K.
Is It Comfortable and Efficient?
So, are you thinking about the performance and comfort ability of these amazing skates? When you put these on for the first time, these skates will offer you a very comfortable fit without even baking the skates.This isn’t confined at all as you will have plenty of room for your foot to lay even after they were tied tight. At the beginning, we were a little worried about the heel being a little loose but that’s where there Pump technology kicks in which we will go into in a bit. This size chart will help you find the right fit for you.
The performance level will be really high as most of the highest level NHL uses the very same technology as used in the CCM Ribcor 50K in order to maximize the performance levels. You will have a better range of motion and incredible agility that will help you improve your overall game. These skates are ideal for any foot size and it suits every single player out there.
The Technology Used In CCM Ribcor 50K
Well, the technology used in the skates is the most advanced and updated as compared to the previous products. With improved efficiency a new pump is also added to the skates. The Ribcor line is the only one offering the patented Pump technology in the market. This newly updated pump will help improve the players comfort. The Ribcor 50K skate is also build with the ComfortFrame technology, which consists of EPP foam around the interiors walls of the skate.
The Heel-lock is very demanding among the players as they want the skates to fit as well that they feel it to be a part of their body. So, that’s where the Ribcor 50K skates come into play, its brand new pump provides a customized heel lock. There is no other skate available in the market that can match this feature of the Ribcor 50K.
This skate has everything that top NHL players demand as it will provide comfort, flexibility and luxury to move in any direction because of its new technology. This is not it, as there is another new technology introduced in the skates as well and that is AttackFrame technology which has carbon composite.
The all new Ribcor Elite Quarter Package will offer you great agility and comfort. The quarter package design uses stiff carbon inserts which are connected to the flexible composite materials that will offer you stability, stiffness and extraordinary heel-lock all in one package.
The inner core of the quarter is also heat moldable which will improve your overall fit and stability. When we baked these, they felt even better with such a snug fit while being comfortable with the foams inside. Plus they flex in just the right areas avoiding any discomfort. For our more indepth review of the CCM RibCor 50K’s click here.
8. CCM Tacks 3092
These skates have made the list because these are great for anyone taking up the sport or at the beginners’ level, and here is why….
More forgiveness and support
So, these boots skates are utilizing CCM’s synthetic tech form which gives you a big jump in stiffness compared to the 2092s. It’s still going to be forgiving like we said for those entry level players. But it will give you much more support and stability through the rear.
But you will see that the boot has a much more anatomical shape all the way around, so right out of the box it’s going to fit around the foot even better than what we saw in the 2092s.
We also get really nice thick tongue on these as well. This is a 7 mm two-piece white felt tongue with very traditional fit and feel. It’s going to help avoid any lace bites and other impacts in that sensitive area. And if you are looking for a little flop you could definitely get that going in there just like the pros.
With the blades on the skates, you will see the stainless-steel runner from Speedblade which is held by their pro holder. Quick note that this is not going to be removable. It is all connected to an injected plastic outsole which is going to give players especially about the entry-level a little bit more forgiveness than what we see in the upper price points.
Excellent comfort for fraction of the price
At the end of the line you’ll see a two-tone brushed microfibre liner. It’s a very nice soft feel even when we didn’t wear any socks with it, absolutely loved the feel. But even if you are wearing socks, they still very nice and comfortable.
Internally they have some multi density foam padding in there, so it’s going to give you that really nice heel lock. Then, once it breaks in, it will give you that real nice feel as well.
In terms of fit profile, like were mentioned earlier, the skates are very anatomical so it’s going to give you that close to the foot feel throughout.
9. BAUER SUPREME 1S
The skates have the TUUK Lightspeed Edge holder which is a quick release trigger system that allows you to swap out damage of broken steel in seconds keeping you on the ice and not on the bench.
You also notice the TUUK LS4 stainless steel runners on the skates which is the highest grade that Bauer offer and sits 3mm taller than the previous Lightspeed 2 allowing for more custom profiling options and a longer sharpening life.
These are connected to the ultra lightweight vented composite which provides stability but gives you better energy transfer through each stride on the ice.
Features anatomical fit the Supreme name has become famous for
Taking a look at the quarter package, you see the use of the 3D-lasted technology from the MX3 but with the added feature of the Titanium curve which helps to increase stiffness and responsiveness of the boot. When we went ahead and baked these boots, it was pretty incredible how the stiff material softens up and curves to the natural contour of your foot shape.
The boots come with black laces and have an injected stability lacing system which gives you 33% more forward flex so you are able to get even further through each stride giving you better ankle bend. The eyelets are actually t-shaped so that the laces are held better, staying tight throughout the entirety of the game.
The tongue of the boot features a combination 52oz/40oz white felt construction with comfort padding on the back for a better fit against your foot. As well, the C-Flex technology allows you to control the stiffness for the perfect feel when skating while providing pro level protection for the top of the foot.
Moving down the boot, the Bauer Speed Plate insoles feature a recovery alloy that provides you with a revolutionary customized fit that can be molded time and time again with no ill effects. The Speed Plate insoles mold directly to you and increase the contact area between your foot and the outsole of the skate enabling better balance and stability at all speeds.
Total edge comfort pads line the top of the boot to reduce abrasions against the leg when turning and integrated wear pads on the liner increase overall durability of the skate. Around the ankle on the inside of the boot, lightweight memory foam pads replace traditional anaform foam for a personal fit and mold. A 37.5 technology polyester liner keeps the skate at a ridiculously low weight and provides moisture wicking technology using your sweat to dry the liner.
10. CCM JETSPEED FT1
The Jetspeed has CCM’s hyper glide stainless steel blade runners which is a high polish finish that eliminates drag from the runners on the ice. The blade is attached to the SB 4.0 holder with their speed grip technology which gives you every ounce of power that you can get from this holder because it adds stiffness and rigidity while not losing it in the holder itself. Getting into the boot, the skates have a RocketFrame composite with their light frame 360 technology. So there is no outsole on these skates which means that CCM have brought in that one-piece technology with that signature jet speed fit.
Now CCM designed this boot to fit as comfortably around a players foot as possible. The one-piece composite gives you 360 degree contact between your foot and the skate so as you take your stride, you are not losing anything inside of the boot. Also the fact that there is no outsole means that all the power is getting transferred directly into the holder and then into the ice so you feel much more connected when you are out skating. When you put these on, you can really feel the edges hugging around the shape of the foot especially with the high definition heel lock, when you slide it in there, you could almost feel it pinch to give you an awesome heel lock and a great fit from top to bottom.
Now looking into the tongue, there is a nice upgrade there where CCM have gone ahead and added a lace bite guard giving you better protection for the top of the foot and obviously dealing with any lace bite issues that might happen. There’s a thick white felt design which is what they call their TriTech tongue and has injected foams all the way through the center which really help mold to the top of your foot as well.
Now getting into the liner, there are comfort edge wraps on both sides for high ankle abrasion and really help to wick away the moisture to keep your feet dry during the game. Deep into the skates, you’ll find those multi density memory foam ankle pads that give you that great high definition heel lock. Their Total Dry Pro liner which has a really nice soft feel to it but is also one of their premier materials designed to wick away moisture so keeping you dry during the game as well as reducing drying time after the game.
Hope this review helped you out narrow down your options. As I mentioned earlier, it all comes down to your budget and playing level.
If you’re new to the site, check out the other sections of the site. We have TONS of fantastic information about hockey equipment and choosing the best gear for you.