Can I rollerblade in the rain? The straightforward answer is yes! However, rollerblading in the rain can be risky because of the wet and slippery surface, making falling inevitable. Also, skating in the rain damages your inline skating shoes’ bearings, putting you at more risk. So, while you can skate in the rain, it’s important to be careful lest you get hurt.
Below is a quick rundown of what to do to keep safe when you have to skate in the rain.
- Always Stay Low in the Recommended Skating Position
- Avoid Pools of Water on the Road or Pavement
- Wear protective gear for Skating
- Use Special Rain Wheels
- Avoid Longer Pushes and Glides
- Maintain Low Speed and avoid doing Tricks
- Clean and Store your Skates in a Cool and Dry Place after Rollerblading
But this is only the scratch on the surface. In the rest of this guide, I go deep into why rollerblading in the rain is risky and how to keep safe. So, without much ado, let’s get to it!
Why Rollerblading in the Rain can be Risky
Sometimes, rollerblading in the rain isn’t an option, especially when you have to rollerblade to work. When this is the situation, you only need to protect yourself from rollerblading-related dangers. So let’s quickly expound on why rollerblading in the rain can be risky.
Wet and Slippery Surface
If you’re like most skaters, you’ll most likely skate on the roads with asphalt. But even when skating in an unused parking lot, the surface will often be asphalt because only a few parking spaces use concrete and cobblestones.
That being said, asphalt surfaces are more slippery when wet, making it a hassle to skate on them. Also, while skating, your wheels will slide, making it hard to maintain your balance. This brings us to the next thing—falling, which is inevitable when skating on wet surfaces.
Falling is unavoidable
Falling is unavoidable when skating, whether the surface is dry or wet. However, you’re more susceptible to falling when the surface is wet, especially when skating in the rain or after a downpour.
So, if you don’t know how to fall without hurting yourself, you can pick several injuries. When you trip and fall because of a slippery surface, you’re likely to suffer head injuries, broken wrists, ankles, and tailbone. The pain is often unbearable, especially when the fall is severe.
Skating in the Rain Damages your Bearings putting you at more Risk
Water reacts with the metal bearings in your rollerblades, making them rust. When rust builds in the bearings and wheels, they stick, preventing smooth rotation of the wheels.
In addition, this may loosen the bearings and wheels, putting you at more risk in case they come out when skating. This can cause a disastrous accident, especially when rollerblading at high speed.
Apart from damaging the bearings, rollerblading in the rain also damages the fabric used to make the inline skating shoes. This is more likely to occur if your skates aren’t hard boots. If you skate in the rain for long, you may have to budget for new rollerblades pretty soon.
Safety Tips When Rollerblading in the Rain
When falling is inevitable and skating in the rain isn’t a choice, there has to be a way to protect yourself from the risks. Sure, there is not one but several things you can do to keep safe when rollerblading in the rain. So, let’s get to it!
1. Always Stay Low in the Recommended Skating Position
Staying low is one of rollerblading best practices because it goes a long way to help achieve stability, body balance, and control. Like we’ve already seen, skating on a wet and slippery surface reduces balance and stability, making it easy to fall.
However, by bending correctly, you should have your body weight well distributed. The recommended skating position involves bent knees over the toes and shoulders above your hips. This helps transfer your body weight to your footballs.
If you’re yet to master this skill, it will be best to learn it before hitting the roads to rollerblade in the rain. In addition, it can be a little uncomfortable in the beginning, but trust me, it’s worth the effort.
2. Avoid Pools of Water on the Road or Pavement
Pools of water on the roads or pavements pose a lot of risk to skaters. Many times, what you see on the surface is a fraction of what is below it. The pool of water you see can be a massive pothole that can damage your skates and break your feet. So, the best way to stay protected is to avoid skating into pools of water on the roads.
3. Wear protective gear for Skating
Wearing protective gear for skating goes a long way to protect your body if you fall because of the wet and slippery surface. The basic protective gear for rollerblading includes a helmet, elbow pads, wrist guards, and knee pads.
Other protective gears you may want to have are shin guards, hip pads, and eyeglasses. They may not be entirely necessary, but there’s no harm to have them anyway. A helmet helps protect your head from head injuries.
In addition, you can use a bike or skateboard helmet provided they’re ASTM F 1447 and ASTM F 1492. These are the recommended helmet type according to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission. These are the best helmets because they’re dual impact, meaning you can still use them more after falling.
Lastly, elbow pads are for protecting your elbow, wrist guards and gloves are for protecting your wrists, palms, and fingers, and knee pads are for protecting your knees from bruises in case you fall.
4. Use Special Rain Wheels
Not all types of wheels are suitable for skating in the rain. In particular, you want to avoid hard wheels of 85A and above because they offer little grip on wet and slippery surfaces. Instead, you want to use soft wheels of 70A grade.
For the sake of skating in the rain, you can have two sets of wheels to alternate when necessary. Each time you go rollerblading in the rain, you can remove your hard wheels and replace them with soft ones.
Below is an informative YouTube video for more inspiration.
5. Avoid Longer Pushes and Glides
You also want to avoid long pushes and glides when rollerblading on wet surfaces. In my opinion, it’s more important to get to your destination in good shape than with injuries. So, it goes a long way only to make small strides until you get to your destination. The good news is that if you have these special rain wheels, you shouldn’t stress over long pushes and glides.
6. Maintain Low Speed and avoid doing Tricks
You want to maintain a low speed because skating at high speed can be disastrous. In addition, doing tricks on wet surfaces should be a big no unless you’re a pro skater already. Keep your skating simple and focus on arriving safely. You’ll be glad you followed this!
7. Clean and Store your Skates in a Cool and Dry Place after Rollerblading
Lastly, you want to clean and store your rollerblades in a cool and dry place after every skating session. It’s recommended to use some warm water to remove any dirt stuck between the wheels and the bearings. Then, use a towel to dry your skates before lubricating them with grease. Lastly, store them in a cool and dry place to prevent rust in the bearings.
Can I rollerblade in the Rain? Final Thoughts
Can I rollerblade in the rain? Absolutely yes. However, it would help if you had special rain wheels, protective gear for rollerblading, skate at low speed, avoid long pushes and glides, stay in the bent position, avoid pools of water on the road, and to clean your skates then, store them in a cool and dry place to prevent rust in the bearings.