When it comes to optimizing your performance on the ice, nothing is more important than blade alignment for both hockey players and figure skaters. We have all seen the person out on the ice that looks like they are “skating on their ankles” or “ankle skating”, and most people assume that they must have weak ankles. This is not the case. Remember, the ankle is a hinge joint, and only moves front to back. The problem is that their skates need to be properly aligned for their particular bone structure/stance/posture.
Blade alignment means the positioning of a skate blade on a boot, in such a manner that it is relative to the foot and the biomechanics of the body of the skater. In short, it is the positioning of the blade on the boot so that the athletes center of gravity is directly over the blade, correcting pronation, supination or leg discrepancies that negatively affect a skater’s performance on the ice. When a skate is properly aligned for a skater, the blades will track straight and “true” for a skater, sort of like having your wheels aligned and balanced on a car. Did you know that blade alignment is not a new technique? Figure skaters have been aligning their blades for over 100 years, and this is where we first started aligning blades over 20 years ago. We have just simply applied some of the same techniques we use when mounting our figure skates to properly align blades on hockey skates.