To skate well, you need sharp blades. With sharp skates you slide better over the ice and because you have more grip, you can also take off better (see push- off ). With sharp skates, the angles of the iron are 90°.





The blades of the skates become blunt over time. This depends on how often they are used and what kind of ice you skate on. Because there is more sand on natural ice than on the ice rink, the blades become blunt faster on natural ice. You can check for yourself whether your irons are blunt by running your nail along the edge. If "sharps" remains, it is sharp. You do have to try a few spots because the iron never gets blunt evenly. If in doubt, you can always ask the instructor.

You can have your skates sharpened, but you can certainly sharpen yourself if you skate more often.



How does sharpening work?

There is a lot of discussion among skaters about how to sharpen exactly, but the principle is always the same. The intention when sharpening is to grind away the blunt corners. To do this as efficiently and accurately as possible, the skates are fixed with irons at the same height in a grinding table. There are also different types here.

By now going over the irons with a sharpening stone, burrs are formed on both sides of the iron. Then you go over the sides of the irons with the deburring stone, pushing the burrs the other way. By repeating this a number of times, the burr will break down due to “metal fatigue”. You start sharpening with a coarse stone and you then work towards an increasingly finer sharpening stone, so that the burrs become smaller and smaller.

When should you sharpen your skates?

That is actually very simple, namely if your skates are blunt. You notice this firstly in the reduced amount of grip you have on the ice. You can also feel it by running the top of your nail diagonally along the corners of iron. If there is little to no sharps from your nail on the iron, the skate is blunt.

Skates can also feel dull due to a burr on the iron. You can feel this by moving the tip of your nail from top to bottom along the iron. There's a burr if your nail catches right in front of the bottom edge.

Where can you sharpen your skates?

You can try it yourself, but you can also have your skates sharpened at a skate shop.


In addition to sharp skates, there should also be a curve in the skates. Read more about this at skating round .