When Were Rollerblades Invented – History of Rollerblades

Are you into rollerblading and are curious that when were rollerblades invented? Rollerblading is a sport that has become very famous over time for various reasons. Rollerblading has immense benefits for the body muscles as well. It helps in improving your balance and stability. Rollerblading is a sport that involves your whole body and targets more muscles than running or cycling. What is in this for the obese? Obese people especially love this sport as it helps shred the extra calories and achieve a healthier version of themselves. As you get out of your home for rollerblading you can socialize and meet other rollerbladers, this helps builds a social circle of like-minded people and further increases your interest in the sport.

But do you wonder from where this sport came into being? Who were the pioneers? When this all started and how? That’s all this article is going to be about.

History of Rollerblades

This all began in the early 17th century by Dutch people. They used to call themselves skeelers. The people in those times used to skate on frozen canals as it was the easiest way to cover short distances. A Dutch person made a primitive form of roller skate by attaching wooden spools to his shoes. This helps him cover the same distance in warm weather.

The history of these designs dates back to 1743. This is the first documented reference. Not much is known about the person who made these rollerblades. The first known inventor of rollerblades was John Joseph Merlin. He made the skates in 1760 but stopping the skates was a huge issue with his design. In 1863 James Pamilton made quad roller skates. These skates had better control than the Inline design. It had two-wheel pairs one at the front other at back.

In 1844 Levant m. Richardson used silver ball bearings in skate wheels. This significantly reduced the friction. Thus skaters could cover more distance providing much less effort. This helped professional skaters compete better. In 1941 modern Inline Skate design started appearing in the Netherlands. Chicago Roller Skate Company started in 1966. It was one of their design which later inspired Olson brothers.

In 1979 when Scott Olson and Brennan Olson two hockey players witnessed a pair of old skates. Those skates had wheels in a single row. This design intrigued the players and they started experimenting. They started manufacturing the skates with better materials like plastic and metal. Other hockey players were fascinated by what they had just made and many were seen cruising in the streets wearing their roller skates. This all happened in Minneapolis the world’s hockey capital.

Initially rollerblading referred to the sport of Inline skating because Rollerblade Inc found by Scott Olson were the only manufacturers of Inline Skates. Later on, the company was sold by Olson Brothers and the new owners took the company to heights of success by working on the flaws present in earlier models. They made fiberglass frames, they made fiberglass frames, comfortable skates that had better-protected wheels were easier to adjust, and had stronger brakes. With the success of these newly designed models, the sport became very popular and many new companies sprung during this period.

In 1989 two new models of rollerblades were introduced named macro and aero blade. These models were fastened with three buckles. These new models help the skaters perform gently. This secure closure system provides the skater with more support than other models. This new design replaced the need for threading that was the case with long laces.

In 1990 the struggle for improvement continued and Rollerblade Inc started using glass-reinforced thermoplastic resin for their skates. This helped reduce the weight of the rollerblades significantly which was appreciated by the sports enthusiasts. Being lightweight the rollerblades were super comfortable and easy to cruise with. Lighter the rollerblades more gently you can skate and have better stability. Thus with improved durability and efficiency, more people enjoyed the sport and were keen to join the circle. Thus it boosted the interest of people in this sport.

Safety was a major concern for most people when it came to going roller skating. Active brake technology was introduced to tackle this concern of the public. This active brake technology was developed by Rollerblade Inc. In this design, a fiberglass post is attached to the top of the boot at one end and then attached to a rubber brake at the other end. This fiberglass post hinged chassis at the back wheel. On straightening the leg the post was driven into the brake which then hit the ground. Earlier skaters had to tilt their feet backward to make contact with the ground. What was the need for this new design? To improve the safety factor. Tilting feet backward had higher chances of falling and getting injured with the invention of active brake technology the sport became relatively safe.

A Rollerblade has a boot that you wear and with that, the frame containing the wheels is attached. The wheels have bearings that allow them to move freely. The brake is at the back of the boot usually on right one. Whether to go for a hard or soft boot depends on your nature of skating. For recreational purposes more comfortable soft boots are preferable. The aggressive skaters prefer hard boots to protect their feet from impact. The frames can be made of carbon fiber, magnesium, or pressed aluminum. Carbon frames are most expensive but solid and durable. Have a look at, where to buy rollerblades.

Now that you know that when were rollerblades invented you must be more interested in taking this sport as a career. The market is flooded with a variety of rollerblade designs now a days that are quite different from the original ones as innovations and improvements have been done in the design over time.

Roller skating is a fun healthy sport that became popular for the multitude of benefits it was offering. The benefits ranged from physical to mental health. Although quite popular it seems like the existing youth is less interested in outdoor sports. Despite the trend of decline in outdoor sports, those interested in roller skating take out time and cruise through their streets to enjoy nature and have a good time with friends.

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