Figure Skate Boot Fitting

Five Steps for the Best Fit

Incorrectly sized and fit skate boots can cause foot discomfort, affect skater performance, cause premature skate breakdown and also lead to injury. Optimize your comfort and performance on and off the ice by following this list of Dos to make sure your Riedells are a perfect fit.

Do your research.

One of the most common mistakes skaters make is to assume your skate size will be the same as your street shoe size. Just like quality shoes, each brand of skates has different sizing unique to the manufacturer. See Riedell’s sizing chart now or visit your local Authorized Riedell Skate Dealer.

Do buy skates that fit now.

Skates that are sized too large with the hope of the skater being able to grow into them is a mistake. Skates that are too big will not fit or support the foot properly and can cause discomfort, breakdown and possibly lead to injury.

Do examine all parts of the foot for comfort and support.
  • Length: is the foot resting comfortably in the skate and not putting excess pressure on the toes?
  • Width: does the skate provide adequate comfort for the ball joint area of the foot and allow proper support of the arch?
  • Heel: is the heel of the foot seated comfortably in the heel area of the skate to provide maximum foot control?
  • Ankle: does the skate fit comfortably & properly around the ankle and shin area to allow the desired firmness and strength?
Do make sure your toes can wiggle slightly
up & down in the boots.

The end of your toes should lightly brush the end of the boot. You do not want to be able to slide your toes side to side in the skate. If your toes slide sideways in the skate, this is a good indication that the boot is too wide and a narrower width may be needed. Another way to determine if the skate is the incorrect width: look at the boot when laced up with firm lace tension. If the lacing width is too close together, the boot is too wide for your foot. If the lacing width is too far apart, the width is too narrow.  You can check your width against Riedell’s width chart or visit your local Authorized Riedell Skate Dealer.

Do ask questions.

Your Authorized Riedell Dealer has been specially trained and has a wealth of information to help you evaluate your skate needs and can properly measure and fit your feet. If you have any specific questions about sizing, ask your local Authorized Riedell Dealer,  share your questions on our Facebook page or Twitter direct message us.

Heat Molding for a Better Fit

If there is one thing almost every figure skater can relate to, it’s the period right after you purchase a new pair of boots—the “break-in period!” Every pair of Riedell boots is manufactured with the finest materials and components that allow the skate to conform and shape to the exact form of your foot. And remember, as you continue to skate, the more quickly your boots will continue to mold to meet your foot’s unique shape. To get the most out of your boots, have them sized, prepared and heat molded by a trained Authorized Riedell Dealer for minimum break-in. This 10-step process ensures maximum heat activation of boots for effective skate fitting.

  1. Have a trained Riedell skate fitter measure your feet.
  2. Skate oven should be preheated to between 165-180˚F.
  3. Skates should be heated in oven for 4-7 minutes. Medium temper boots will need to be heated for a shorter time of 4-6 minutes. Firm and extra-firm temper boots will need to be heated 5-7 minutes.
  4. Remove boots from skate oven and flex heel counters open so foot can easily be placed in skate.
  5. Place foot in boot and lightly tap heel of foot back into heel cup of the boot. Lace the boot up with firm, snug tension on the laces starting at the throat area over the top of the toes. Maintain the same lacing tension to the top of skate. You can stand and put pressure on skates, but do not walk in the skates if blades are not attached.
  6. Leave skates on for approximately 10 minutes. This will allow skates to shape and contour to your foot.
  7. Remove skates and let your feet and skates relax for several minutes. Put skates back on and lace up with normal, comfortable lacing pressure.
  8. If discomfort or specific pressure points exist, heat area of boot with heat gun and adjust boot with boot press or shoe stretcher as needed.
  9. Re-fit skates using normal lacing pressure.
  10. Hit the ice!

Lacing: The Final Step to the Perfect Fit.

Boots laced too tightly can cause numbness and pain in your feet. To be your best on the ice, your boots should be laced properly. How? Snugly tighten the laces starting in the laces from the first eyelets at the throat, maintaining even tension up to the instep. The throat area should be no closer together when the boot is laced on your foot than the width of the unlaced throat. Then, put a couple of cross twists and finish with medium tension. This keeps your foot firmly in place while allowing maximum flexibility at the ankle joint. The lacing pattern of the entire boot should be uniform.   Laces that are to long create a tripping hazard make sure that you have the correct length of laces with our lace chart.

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