Inline skating brings a lot of excitement and fun. Especially for those who want to do something thrilling outside of traditional roller skating. But inline skating is tricky and requires a lot of practice. Initially, there will be a lot of trial and error. Often, beginners might start thinking to skate on grass surfaces to avoid injury. But, can you rollerblade on grass?
Yes, you can rollerblade on the grass. Many beginners do it to avoid tripping. But you cannot rollerblade properly on that type of surface. This means you won’t be able to learn that much about rollerblading by skating on grassy lands. However, grassy land is a good spot to practice falling safely on the ground.
If you are reading this article, it’s pretty safe to assume that you are a beginner who doesn’t want to get hurt. I will explain why it is hard to rollerblade on grass, what problems you might face, and how to learn it safely. I will also explicitly discuss the ever so important ‘grass stopping’ in case you are in an unfortunate situation that could’ve been avoided.
Problems with Rollerblading on Grass
Roller skating isn’t meant to be performed on grass, let alone the speedier variant rollerblading. You need a clean and smooth for rollerblading and a grass surface will get you none of those. To put it simply, the wheels on your rollerblade won’t get enough friction to accelerate.
Another problem with rollerblading on grass is that the grass surface isn’t clean. Lots of dirt, sand, sludge, etc. goes in there. They might get stuck in the wheels and immobilize them. Even if the wheels can get enough friction, they might end up being clamped because of the tremendous amount of dirt.
Even if you somehow manage to rollerblade on grass, the problems still persist. On the grass surface, you will never learn inline skating. Grass surfaces will never get you the experience of what rollerblading is meant to be. It’s supposed to be precarious, fast, and exhilarating. The grass surface will not be that engaging.
However, there is one advantage you can take from a grass surface. For beginners when you are just about to roll, a grass surface shall come in handy. When you put on rollerblades for the first time, you have to walk a few steps to get a hold of it. Walking on grass will give enough traction that you won’t be able to roll.
So, you can walk freely without the fear of stumbling over and over again. After several trials and errors, you will be able to walk steadily. Don’t stick to the grass surface if you want to take your skill to the next level. Get a hard and smooth surface suitable for rollerblading and keep practicing.
How to Rollerblade on Grass?
As mentioned before, rollerblading on grass is not suitable for beginners. However, I have discussed all the fundamentals that you can follow to skate on the grass down below.
Choose Suitable Rollerblades
When you are skating outdoors, choosing the right rollerblade is of extreme importance. There is a significant difference between indoor and outdoor rollerblades. When it comes to indoor skating, the surface is very smooth and clean. There are no obstacles in the indoor skate rinks or skate parks.
But this is not the case when it comes to outdoor skating. There are rocks, twigs, dirt, & other obstacles on the outdoor surfaces. And when you try to skate on grass, most of these obstacles remain hidden beneath the grass. This makes skating on the grass very hard. And you cannot skate on the grass wearing your indoor inline skates.
Indoor skates are made of hard materials as there is no obstacle or crack in the skatepark or skate rink surface. But if you use indoor inline skates for outdoor skating, the wheels of your skates will wear faster as the outdoor surfaces are very rough.
Again, when you are skating on grass, your wheels might come in contact with hidden rocks or twigs and the shock might cause you to fall to the ground. As a result, you might injure yourself badly.
In that case, outdoor inline skates are much more suitable for skating on the grass. Because the wheels of outdoor skates are made of rubber or rubber-like material. This allows them to absorb shock while skating outdoors. Again, the wheels of outdoor rollerblades are much larger compared to indoor ones. This large size allows them to roll over any obstacles with ease.
As for the boots of your rollerblade, choose something that has great durability and at the same time easy to clean. Always choose high-top boots for outdoor skating like skating on the grass. They provide better protection and better ankle support. And choose boots that fit you perfectly.
For the frames of your rollerblade, make sure that they are made of very strong materials. Unlike indoor skates, outdoor skates have to be strong enough to withstand a lot of shocks. So, choosing frames that can withstand these shocks is very important.
Also, choose frames of appropriate length. Shorter frames are suitable for experienced skaters. On the other hand, longer frames are great for beginners as they provide more stability.
“To skate, all you need is a pair of rollerblades” this is the mentality of many skaters. Especially beginners. And when it comes to skating on grass, this mentality is much more common. They think that skating on grass is the safest as the surface is very soft. But as a matter of fact, skating on grass is just as risky as skating on another outdoor surface.
In the case of rollerblading on grass, most of the obstacles are hidden. But that doesn’t mean that you are safe from them. If you crash and fall, you can still hurt yourself very badly. Choosing the right pair of rollerblades is important. But they only give protection to your ankles. But the rest of your body is still exposed.
This is why you must wear all the safety equipment. They include a helmet, wrist guards, knee, and elbow pads. When you are skating, your head, knees, wrists, and elbows will be the first ones to get injured in case of an accident. Therefore, protecting them is very important.
While buying safety equipment, always buy the best ones that fit you perfectly. This is not something that you should make any sort of compromises. Your safety is above everything else. Buying lower quality safety equipment to save a few bucks is not a good idea as they might not be able to protect you entirely.
Also, if these pieces of safety equipment do not fit you perfectly, there is still a chance that you will injure yourself badly in the event of any sort of accident. Make a habit of wearing safety equipment every time you skate, whether you are skating on a grassy surface or in indoor skate parks.
Practice and Level up Your Rollerblading Skills on Grass
Learning skating rollerblading requires practice and patience. And learning skating on grass requires even more patience and effort. The grassy surface is unlike any other. Here, the obstacles are mostly hidden. So, you can expect to fall on the ground a lot while skating on such a surface.
Start slow and steady. Take your time to adjust to the surface. All good things take time. Try to maintain your balance, push out with one foot, and steadily push out the other. Try to practice this until you feel comfortable. Also, learn to balance your weight as you are moving forward.
Keep doing this and over time this will be your second nature. You will think that the weight of your rollerblades has decreased and you can transfer your weight with minimum effort.
Keep a relaxed mind. Always be vigilant about your surroundings. Especially while skating on grass because most of the obstacles are hidden here. A moment’s distraction can make you fall on the ground.
Keep on practicing the basics of rollerblading. By doing so, your muscle memory will reach a level where you will be able to do skating maneuvers without thinking. Be confident and stay calm.
One important note, do not look at your obstacle directly while skating. If you do so, there is a possibility that you might steer right into the obstacle thus increasing the possibility of an accident. Always keep your eyes on the direction you want to move.
Train your mind in such a way that your eyes will look into the empty spots in the direction you want to move, not the obstacle.
Overcome Your Fear of Fall
Overcoming the fear of fall is one of the basic steps of learning rollerblading. You should master techniques of safely falling on the ground to avoid any sort of major injuries.
To master the art of falling safely on the ground, you can practice on a carpet or even on grassy lands. The grass and the carpet will act as a cushion in this case. They will absorb most of the shock while you fall on it thus reducing the chances of getting hurt badly. But make sure the spot that you are practicing your fall is safe and free from any sort of object that can hurt you.
You can start by enacting a knee fall. To do that, keep your feet at a shoulder-width distance and stand on the carpet or grassy spot of your choosing. Now bend your knees slightly and try to enact the forward lunge and stand up. Remember to always keep your knees bent slightly while you are standing. When you feel comfortable with the drill, increase the difficulty level.
For a backward fall, always try to choose a side and fall on that side of your bum. This will prevent serious tailbone injury. Practice these drills until you have overcome your fear of fall. And by practicing them, you are minimizing the chances of hurting yourself in the event of an accident.
Learn to Do the Grass Stop Maneuver
Grass stopping is one of the masteries you must acquire when learning rollerblading on grassy lands. The funny part about the grass stop is that you only need it when you are a beginner. Once you reach the next level, this particular skill is pretty much useless. Why is that? Let me explain what it is and how it works. Hopefully, that will clear some confusion.
When you are learning inline skating on a grassy surface, stopping can feel quite difficult. Even when I have learned to maintain balance and skate freely, stopping can still be trouble. That is where grass-stopping comes into play. Most of the time you will be skating on sidewalks or on streets where there are grassy fields available on the far side.
To ease up the stopping procedure, you can simply steer towards the grassy land. Once the grass grabs the wheels of your skates, you will automatically slow down and stop. But it is slightly more complicated than it sounds. There are some tricks and tips that go into it. The key objective is to stop your body from leaning forward due to inertia.
When you touch the grass, lower your body. Push your knees forward. This will lower the center of gravity of your body thus making the stopping procedure effortless. Next, put one foot ahead of the other. Any feet will do but the more comfortable foot is recommended. Keep both feet apart as it will help you maintain stability.
Lastly, shift your body backward just enough so that you don’t fall off. Lift the toe of your front leg at the same time. As you start to slow down, you may become imbalanced. Use your arms to balance your weight. And that’s it. If done correctly, you will come to a stop as smooth as butter.
Try it at a faster speed. You never know when a kid will run in front of you, or when a crazy driver shall floor it in the neighborhood. So, you have to be prepared to stop at any time, especially at a faster speed. Although I’ve said that it is a must as a beginner, this maneuver can come in handy at any time when you are near a grassy field.
Some Words of Caution While Rollerblading on Grass
Learning and mastering rollerblading is a difficult task that requires hours of practice and a “Never give up” attitude. And rollerblading outdoors also requires you to follow a certain set of safety guidelines. Here are these safety cautions that outdoor rollerbladers should follow whether they are beginner or professional.
Never Skate in Wet Surface
This is mandatory for every type of rollerblader: indoor or outdoor. Never skate on wet outdoor surfaces, especially when it rains. This will make your rollerblade skid, which can lead to deadly accidents.
Also, skating on wet surfaces will wet your rollerblades. This can cause the bearings in your rollerblade to rust. And as a result, your rollerblade will not work effectively. In this case, you might have to replace the rusty bearings.
Don’t Skate Downhill
This advice is aimed at beginner rollerbladers. As a beginner, you do not have enough experience to skate at a high speed and how to control and maneuver your rollerblades.
When you are skating downhills, you will be going at a very high speed. You might not be able to control the high speed of your skate. As a result, you might end up crashing which could lead to serious injury.
As a beginner skater, always start with a flat surface. Get comfortable with high-speed skating and stay away from high slopes until you are confident enough to roll from high grounds. When you do skate from any kind of hill, stay vigilant about your surroundings.
Check Your Rollerblades Going Out Skating
Before you put your rollerblades on, always examine them to identify any sort of problem. If you skate regularly, the wheels of your rollerblades will start to wear. And if somehow your skates get wet, the bearings and the frame might become rusty. And as a result, you might not be able to skate smoothly and lead to accidents in the worst-case scenario.
Even if you haven’t used rollerblades for a long time, the bearings can become rusty due to the presence of moisture in the air. So, make a habit of checking your skates every time before you go out skating. Just take a quick look at the condition of your rollerblades. This will be more than enough.
Rollerblading on grass is an idea that is sure to strike your mind as a beginner. It is nothing to blame because as a beginner, rollerblading can be scary. You are very likely to trip, stumble, and fall off. You might even get injured. But to learn inline skating properly, those pains are something you must embrace. You cannot learn inline skating on the grass.
I have explained why rollerblading on grass is a bad idea and why you cannot learn it properly. Also, how you can use the grass surface to your advantage as a novice inline skater. I have also shed some light on one of the most important skills you must obtain in your course.
I hope this article was able to soothe your curiosity about Can You Rollerblade on Grass or not.