A birthday party at a roller rink is guaranteed fun and half the headache as your usual get-
together. The local roller rink is also a fun place to have a company party, celebrate
anything from retirement, going away, bachelor/bachelorette parties, or graduation, you name
it. There are different options to hosting skating parties, you can have your party during
public skating session with a designated time for your party’s activities, you could rent the
entire rink to yourselves or you can always just get a group of friends/ colleagues/co-workers
together and skate public session .
**Tip** Going roller skating is a really creative stop for a date night. Whether you are Fred Astaire
on skates or a rank beginner, don’t sweat it, you will either be really impressive or super cute (a win-win!).
9. Improving Coordination and Balance
Roller skating, like anything physical that requires use of the entire body, is a great way to
develop and improve coordination and balance. As a skater and coach myself, I always
encourage friends and family members with little ones to involve their kids in skating at an
early age to help with development of balance and strengthening of muscles (I’m talking 2
years old). Livestrong.com has even named roller skating as a great activity to build
coordination and balance. Check it out at http://werollerskate.com/livestrongskating
8. Meet New People
How many of us skaters have a story of meeting a special
someone at the roller rink? How about the moms who end
up adding the Stroller Skate session to their weekly routine
with other moms they met at the rink? How many kids,
tweens, teens, and adults have met some of their best
friends at the skating rink? If you have a story or two
to share please add a comment, I would love to hear them
Bottom-line, if you’re tired of the same crowd or no crowd at all, you will definitely find
someone to connect with at the skating rink, its a very diverse and often colorful place where
people go to have fun.
7. The Music!!
Now word to the wise, all skate DJ’s are different and most public skate sessions are usually
themed depending on the time of day and day of the week, so…be sure to pick the right session
for you. A lot of rink flyers(advertisements) will say things like “Adult Night Thursdays or
70′s Flashback Wednesdays or TinyTot Saturday” you get the idea. Go on a day and time that
suits your taste in music. The music at a skate rink is great because they usually have
everything! Skating rinks in particular can get a subscription to monthly compilation CD’s of
popular music or any genre so their playlists are constantly being updated. You’d be
surprised how even the most beginner skater finds a way to get their dance moves in when
their favorite song comes on.
**Tip** Most skating rinks have a request list at the DJ booth so make nice with your DJ and get your
favorite song played!
6. Support Your Local Community
Skating rinks are small businesses and are usually family owned and operated. They employ
young kids and adults of their local community. Many roller skating rinks contribute to their
communities with outreach programs offering free or reduced skating lessons to children and
youth. Every year there are fewer and fewer skating rinks open due to lack of admissions.
Let’s not forget that the local roller rink provides a safe activity for kids and youth and
the competitive sports offered are a great after-school option.
For a considerably lower price than a trip to the movie theater,
you can have an entire evening of fun and exercise at the
local skating rink. With discounts usually given to groups
or families and even entire sessions dedicated to saving
money like the “Cheap Skate”, this outing seems like a
no-brainer. I’ve seen kids spend an entire Saturday afternoon
at the skating rink for $10 or less! Now snack bars are
expanding their menus to include more substantial and healthy options you can even grab a bite
for a reasonable price.
**TIP**Many public sessions last about 2-2.5 hours but will overlap with another, so for an additional couple bucks you can extend your stay for another few hours.
4. Safe Environment/ Family Friendly
The great thing about skating rinks being family owned and operated (relatively small
businesses) is that the owners and managers tend to know their customers quite well. The
employees young and old are also very familiar with the customers and the regulars so they can
easily sniff out those who might become problematic and quickly diffuse any dangerous or
potentially disruptive situation.As business owners whose clientele is largely children and youth, skating
rinks do a great job in providing a safe place for parents to leave their
children unattended. No business owner wants to think a child was harmed
or was in a dangerous situation in their place of business especially one
that serves families, from my 20 years in skating rinks I feel confident
saying that. Not just for skating a public session, but there are also
competitive skating teams that are great options for children and youth to
become involved in as a safe after-school option.
**TIP** Call or stop by the local skating rink to ask about hockey, figure, derby and speed skating teams.
Roller skating is recognized and recommended by the American Heart
Association (AHA) as an aerobic fitness sport. Just one hour of moderate roller skating burns
330 calories for a 143lb person. If that same person roller skates vigorously, they will burn
up to 590 calories in an hour. The number of calories burned per hour while skating at 6 mph
is 350 and 600 while skating at 10 mph. Not to mention you are having fun doing it! If you
don’t believe me, check out some of the photos in the rink of their competitive skating teams
and be prepared for your jaw to drop when you see the legs and glutes that skating can help you tone and
develop. Because of the weight of a roller skate not only are you getting a cardio work out
(from the full body involvement) but you are quickly toning your legs and booty.
Pull your kids off the computer on the weekend and spend the day burning calories and building
memories. Once they get the hang of it and meet a few friends you won’t have to barter and
beg them to exercise, they’ll be begging you for a ride and $10 to go skating for the
**TIP**Check out programs at your local skating rink that offer unlimited skating sessions for a low monthly fee, and cancel that gym membership that you pay every month and never use.
Now if you’re under the age of 20 you might not “get” this
one, but anyone who lived post 1969 definitely has some old
skating rink memories. Maybe your parents took you as a kid,
or bought you a pair of skates for Christmas. Or perhaps you
were involved in the competitive skating scene at one time or
are still a part of it, either way some of our fondest childhood
and young adulthood memories took place in a skating rink.
If you haven’t stepped foot in a rink in a long time don’t stress, although it may be a different vibe than you last saw
it, skating is like riding a bike..sort of. If you used to be awesome on a pair of quads or
never had the chance to be as good as you wanted its never to late to rekindle the spark. As
a coach/instructor I’ve worked with all levels of skaters and to be honest some of my favorite
pupils have been skaters from the past who want to enjoy it again or who always wanted to go
backwards like those great skaters they watched from the sidelines. I guarantee there is an
instructor in every skating rink who would love to help you achieve your personal goals so go
for it! The great thing about skating is that you won’t be the only one who skated around the
time you did so you will make connections with others quickly and before you know you’ll be a
rink rat again just like you were ‘back in the day’.
If you’ve ever done it, you know why its fun. If you’ve never done it, its time you find out.
Maybe its the atmosphere, the physicality of it, the music and energy of a rink, the hint of
danger, the challenge, the opportunity to continue improving your skills, the youthful
ambience, the nostalgia….whatever it is to you its FUN! I don’t know of anything else that
kind of enamors people of all ages, but honestly I know people whose skating experiences are
generational, passed down through the family. I know people who have been skating from infant
to geriatric. How many old men and women play basketball every Sunday evening? Its a social
and physical activity that you will fall in love with so my best advice is to go find out why
its so fun, because for me it just is.
Don’t waste another minute,find a rink near you!