February 2004

Mr. Edge is a qualified skate technician with years and years of experience. He can answer your questions on boots, blades and foot problems related to your equipment. Questions will be answered in SKATING magazine and later posted on the web site.

Well skaters, it's that time again.
In order to leave more room for your questions, I'm not going to spend much time with an intro. So, with that in mind.

Golly geezer, you're sure keeping me on my toes this year. Steven Amess of Akron, Ohio, has another suggestion for those of you who have a burning sensation in the bottom of your feet.

Since the arches in his boots were too high for him, Steven installed two heel wedges inside his boots, thus taking the pressure off his arches. Sounds like a pretty good idea. Steven, thanks for your input.
Enough for the opening comments.

Q: Is there any way I can break in a new boot off the ice?

A: Yes! Try these quick methods:

  • Apply a leather conditioner, such as mink oil or Lexol, to both the inside and outside of your boots. This will help soften up the leather.
  • Make a mixture of 25 percent alcohol and 75 percent water. Spray this into your boots, then put them on and walk around in them for a while.
  • You could wear them around the house for about 15 minutes a day, walking up and down the stairs. The gentle bending of the knees when walking up and down the stairs would almost be the same as doing a waltz jump.

Q: Why do I sometimes get blisters on my feet from my skates? Philadelphia, Pa.

A: Well, your boots are either too big for you in the length or width (maybe both), or you're not tightening your laces up properly, which is causing your feet to move around. You might want to have your boots rechecked for size and width.

Q: Is the cork heel in the new Riedell HLS 1500 sturdy enough to hold up over an extended period of time? Newark, Del.

A: No need to worry it's plenty strong and not only helps in reducing the overall weight of the boot, but it also acts as a shock absorber. Just be sure to waterproof the soles and heels just like any other pair of boots.

Q: I have had Riedell boots since I started private lessons and enjoy them very much. I am a very small built girl and was told that SP-Teri's are made tough. I was wondering if as you progress higher up with your skating, you would recommend buying a different boot other than Riedell. Fargo, N.D.

A: It is true that SP-Teri boots are made tough, but that depends upon the boot model that you're talking about. Riedell also makes (as you put it) tough boots. If you feel comfortable with your Riedell boots then I would recommend that you stay with them. However, be sure you don't over boot yourself with your next pair. You may just need to stay in the same model boot you have for the next go around.

Q: I'm an intermediate/novice skater and have recently landed my double Axel and triple Salchow. I've been skating in the Jackson 3500 boot since last March, and they are breaking down already.
My landings are also very hard. What type of boot should I get that might last longer? Toronto, Ontario, Canada

A: Consider yourself lucky! Considering your level of skating and how hard you are on your skates, you should be getting about eight to nine months from your current boots. Going to a stronger boot will probably do you more harm than good. Any skater who skates in too a stiff boot can expect problems. If you've been skating problem-free in your current boots, don't look for anything stronger. If you have had any major problems, then let's talk about it.

Mr. Edge and all related elements are property of Arena Sports & Consulting Services, Inc. ©2016. Send your questions to Mr. Edge via mail (Ask Mr. Edge, SKATING magazine, 20 First Street, Colorado Springs, CO 80906); FAX (719) 635-9548 or e-mail them online.

The opinions of Mr. Edge are his own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the U.S. Figure Skating or SKATING magazine. Remember, if you have problems with your feet, check with a doctor the problem may very well be with your boot, but it could be more serious. Check with your local pro shop for more information about boots and blades.