Somebody took me ice-skating for the first time in 1999 and I instantly became fanatical about it - a typical case of AOSS (adult-onset skating syndrome). I subsequently also took up inline-skating (roller-blading) and can be seen skimming through London's East End most days.
During the winter I skate at Broadgate Ice Rink, which is brilliant, but in the summer it is shut so I go to Alexandra Palace on Sundays and the Lee Valley rink during the week. The Lee Valley rink is really nice - big and bright and clean. Just a bit too warm. It seems hard to get to until you realise that there are frequent trains to Clapton from Liverpool Street.
Here are some pictures from Broadgate.
For inline figure skating I was using PIC skates. I subsequently acquired a pair of Custom V1 inlines which I think are better for figure skating on tarmac. They differ from the PIC skates in two main ways: there is an adjustable rocker on the wheels and the toe stop is mounted on a screw thread which makes it continually adjustable. With the PIC skates I would start a session with a fresh plastic pick but after an hour or so it would be worn down so that the height of the pick would be different, changing the point in the jump when it made contact with the ground. The rocker of the Custom V1 skate lets me keep the pick off the ground more so that it does not wear down so much, and at least gives me a chance of spinning without rubbing the pick the whole time. Although the pick does wear down a little, I can unscrew it just a turn or so, so that its height remains almost constant. Mind you, the first thing you see when you receive your Custom V1's is a big notice telling you not to skate on tarmac....
I'm afraid I've given up doing figure skating on inlines for now. Maybe I'll try again some time but at the moment I'm sticking to ice.
You can get info about PIC skates here: www.picskate.com
And info about Custom V1's was here, although it seems now they're up to V2: www.custominlines.com.au
Here is Hypno's site: www.hypno.it
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