Whether you need a top of the line skate or are looking to save some cash, have a regular or wide foot, our list has detailed breakdowns of the best hockey skate options out there to help you take your skating to the next level!
After an insane year full of cancelled or delayed hockey seasons, it feels nice to be getting back to playing hockey! We hope wherever you’re visiting from your 2022 / 2023 season is long, uninterrupted, and filled with going bar down with any chance you get! Bauer, CCM, and True have been releasing some wicked models for this year, all vying for the best hockey skate title – so we are going to recap what we think is the cream of the crop!
A release that in any other time would have garnered more attention, Bauer dropped the Vapor Hyperlite skates and they are being spotted all over the NHL right now. They have quickly taken over our spot as the hottest skates of the year. Contents
Our Team's Hockey Skates Picks
- Best Overall Hockey Skate: Bauer Vapor HyperLite
- Runner Up & Best CCM Skate: CCM SuperTacks AS3 Pro
- Best Budget Friendly Hockey Skate: True TF9
The Player's Choice
Brand new and taking the NHL by storm, this amazing fitting skate is designed for all out speed, and it delivers !
CCM's New Top Dog
Bursting at the seams with features, CCM takes aim at Bauer to try and claim top skate in the NHL. And with the SuperTacks AS3, they just might have a shot.
Budget Friendly High Performer
True has finally released some off the shelf skates in addition to the Pro Customs, and people are loving them so far!
Curious about what we think are the best inline hockey skates our there? Click here to check out our article!
The Best Hockey Skates Money Can Buy
1. Bauer Vapor Hyperlite
- Skate Weight – The Hyperlite weighs a feather light 849 grams in a senior 9.0D boot
- Aerolite Foam Tongue – Bauer has incorporated a thermoforming inset into the tongue which creates a snug fit with a comfortable forward flex.
- AeroFoam Pro Liner – This new liner system by Bauer keeps your foot dry and locked in place the entire game reducing in boot movement and increasing energy transfer.
- Asymmetrical Fit– A redesigned boot has helped to mimic the natural ankle position for better support without increased stiffness.
- Perfectly Molded Fit – Bauer has made major strides in ensuring your foot is held in place comfortably all game. The Lock-Fit Pro Liner and Flex-Lock Pro Tongue combine to provide the most responsive flex and feel from any skate I’ve ever tried.
- Paramount Protection – The Curv Composite material and X-rib support yield second to none protection for the heel and ankle when blocking shots and taking slashes. This is one of the best hockey skates for blocking shots and not having to worry about getting sidelined with a foot injury.
- Increased Agility – The Vapor skate is hands down one of the best for agile players. The Speed Plate molds to your foot, increasing your agility and stability. Having such good contact with the base of the skate, you will accelerate quicker laterally and horizontally than you ever have before.
- This is a tapered fit which means its ideal for players with low profile feet who like a shallow heal and low instep. Fit and comfort is the most important factor when choosing a hockey skate and this Bauer model is the best skate for players who prefer a flatter boot. Bauer has somewhat addressed this with their 3 fitment system, however we still find the Vapor is a skate designed for feet that are small in the toe box area
This is one of the best skates on the market in 2021, players are slowly switching over from their Vapor 2X Pro’s as we speak. If you’re a skilled player who relies on agility and quickness for your game then these are the best skates for you. Bauer has improved the fit and flex of the skate which is perfect for quick acceleration and tight turns. Bauer started the reign of the Vapor models all the way back in the day with the creation of the now classic Vapor XX and these skates carry on that legacy of ultimate performance.
Best Hockey Skate For Narrow Feet
2. CCM Tacks AS-V Pro
- Skate Weight – The AS-V Pro are a super light 829 grams in a senior 8.0D boot
- One Piece Boot Power – A single piece boot, with carbon wrapping under the boot to avoid glue or nails where energy can be lost
- Available Blades – The AS-V Pro’s can be ordered with either STEP Blacksteel, V-Steel, or regular steel (in order of most advanced to least)
- Swappable Tongues – Available additional tongues coming in different thicknesses allow you to have as much or as little recoil in the front of your foot as you want
- The AS-V Pro has CCM’s new One-Piece boot power tech, with a lightweight RFM composite matched up with high end carbons in the boot. Together these give you a lightweight, strong, and efficient boot that transfer all your power to your blades
- Three Tongue Choices – XS Slim, Regular, or Extra made out of D30 smart material. The slim tongue is well suited to forwards, whereas the thick tongue adds some beef for defenders who might be blocking more shots
- Step Steel Blades – CCM recently purchased Step, who were a premier maker of premium blades made out of strong and exotic steel blends. The AS-V Pro comes with a choice (for a cost) of any of Steps’ three available steels
- This hockey skate has very few real disadvantages. When you put every bit of technology under your companies umbrella in a skate, there are no technical shortcomings – but you have to pay a premium for the skate!
Built to compete with Bauer’s Supreme line, the Tacks line offers a tempting alternative for players looking for top of the line speed. CCM hasn’t held anything back with this hockey skate, loading it with all its top features like the one piece carbon fiber boot, Total Dri Pro+ liner, interchangeable tongues, and whatever version of Step Steel you choose. If you are deciding between a new skate and are a fast skater, consider this one to give you that extra boost!
- Skate Weight – 791 Grams – That’s right, we had to bold and underline that! These things are seriously light, which is why they are our fastest skate!
- 3D Lasted 12k Carbon Construction – A highly advanced carbon fiber boot that maximizes energy transfer with every stride
- Available Skate Blades – The top of the line Mach can come with either Bauer’s Carbonlite, Pulse TI, or regular Pulse runners. The Carbonlite is top of the line being lighter and having more torsional flex than regular steel
- AMP Flex Facing – Bauer has added a flex zone on the front of the skate to allow for a greater range of motion and better angle between your shin and skate
- Ultra Light – The Mach boasts an industry leading 791 gram boot weight. This thing is like a running shoe on your feet and it will feel like you were shot out of a cannon when you are accelerating!
- Powercoil Tongue – Bauer’s premier tongue, not just a piece of felt with some plastic slapped on it – this is injected with a material to improve recoil speed between your strides to get maximum power transfer
- Unibody Power Wrap – Bauer has stiffened the bottom part of the skate to work in conjunction with its power coil tongue, translating into top of the line explosiveness for you!
- If you aren’t big into forward lean and huge shin to foot angles, the Mach might not be the skate for you. This skate is designed for people who get low to the ground to create maximum force. If you want to see what I’m talking about, just watch the Youtube video of Nathan Mackinnon against a speed skater – that’s the type of guy who would be wearing these skates!
With the Supreme series due for a refresh, Bauer has come out with a real banger. It looks amazing with its all black colorway, dropping the traditional black and yellow the Supreme lineup uses. It has the specs to match as well. Ultra light, stiff, and packed with technology, if you are an elite player looking to improve your skating, look no further than the Mach!
Best 2021 Model Hockey Skate
4. Bauer Supreme Ultrasonic
- 3D Lasted Carbon Construction – A highly advanced carbon fiber boot that maximizes energy transfer with every stride
- Tuuk LS Pulse TI – A totally new blade that has a titanium coating for the ultimate in sharpness and edge holding
- Quad Profile – Bauer has identified 4 zones where the blades can be tailored to a skaters stride, and in the case of the Ultrasonic they have built this blade for flat out speed!
- Supportive Boot – The Ultrasonic boasts the most supportive boot in Bauer’s lineup, being stiffer than most and offering amazing energy transfer into your stride
- Four Zone Titanium Blade – Bauer’s Quad zone blade has a toe zone, transition zone, speed zone, and heel zone in order of front to back. They tailor these zones for the skates intention, and for the Ultrasonic, it is for top speed!
- Reflex Pro Tongue – Featuring inserts of various stiffness, so you can have the exact amount of resistance you like in every stride! The stiffer the insert, the more energy return you get!
- Since the Ultrasonic hockey skate is designed for flat out speed, you might miss out on a tad of maneuverability in the corners compared to a Vapor skate. However, with the speed gains you should get maybe you won’t even need to be in the corners at all!
Bauer Supreme Ultrasonic hockey skates back up its bold and aggressive graphics with massive performance! Sticking true to the supreme line’s goal of top speed, Bauer has focused in on power transfer optimization with the reflex pro tongue and reflex tendon guard – conserving your energy and helping you put 110% into every stride! If you play hockey with speed and power, this is the skate for you!
Best Budget Friendly Hockey Skate
5. TRUE TF9 Skate
- Personalized Fit System – Gaining tons of experience from the full pro custom skate, the TF9 integrates arches of all sizes
- TrueShell Tech – A True exclusive molded carbon fiber one piece shell – you won’t find many other one piece boots in this low of a price range!
- Shift Holder – Featuring True’s BenchChange technology, this allows you to hot swap blades at a moments notice without magnetized blade change tools
- Hydrofoam Liner – True has included a hydrofoam liner which wicks all the moisture in your boot to the venting holes in the liner to keep your feet dry and your foot locked in place. It is also anti microbial!
- Top Notch On A Budget – The True TF9 typically comes in at 60-70% the cost of other top of the line hockey skates. You get many trickle down technologies from their top of the line Pro Custom skate in a more budget friendly skate!
- Exceptional Durability – True has one of the most durable hockey skates on the market due to a design with no weak points, as the toe and boot are one piece. They also offer an “Enhanced Impact Protection” option which includes added carbon fiber layering over the ankle plate and side of the foot, which improves protection and durability.
- Perfect Skate Alignment – True has made some innovative strides in making sure your skate does not hinder your stride in any way. They have placed the eyelets to strategically give you an optimal knee-forward position which allows for direct energy transfer between your legs and the ice with every stride. The tendon guard also gives you optimal flexibility making this one of the best skates in terms of skating alignment.
- The TF9 and its little brother the TF7 are somewhat newcomers to the skate world. These are True’s first off the shelf skates so there is a little bit of risk getting the first model. However, we are confident with all their success with the True Pro Customs that they are making another winner here.
True as a company isn’t a newcomer to skates anymore, with the technology they purchased from VH skates being tried and true. They purchased VH Hockey outright a few years back to add top of the line skates to their already impressive equipment lineup. To further bolster credibility, already 12% of players in the NHL are opting for the True Pro Customs. Expanding their lineup to skates you can find at your local hockey retailer is a great
Best Choice If You Need Cheap Skates
6. Bauer Supreme 3S Pro
- Reflex Tongue – Bauer has gone to a three piece, lightweight felt tongue with an injected metatarsal gaurd for added protection.
- LockFit Liner – The LockFit system keeps your feet dry by wicking moisture off your feet, helping you stay locked in the boot all game long
- 3D Curv Composite Boot – One step down from the top of the line Carbon Composite, the non carbon boot is still very lightweight and stiff, putting all your power to the ground.
- Flexible Fit – Bauer gives the skate the flexibility to match each individual players game and desired range of motion with its anatomical construction. This brand new technology lets you try out different degrees of flex in the tongue and tendon guard, letting you pick the exact flex that gives you the best feel and optimal tongue flexion.
- Intense Cooling – You may not think the LockFit liner would help out your game until you try it, but your foot will feel cool and dry all game with the sweat evaporating as you warm up. This really helps keeping your foot locked in and prevents it from sliding around after a few periods, letting you burn that defenseman and go bar down in the third with ease.
- The ankle is equipped with memory foam pads to create a softer feel of the foot inside the skate which form fits every single time. This is quite new to hockey skates and if you are currently using an older model this might take a few skates to get used to.
If you need to save some cash but need new wheels, look no further. The 3S Pro is a few years old but many retailers still have it in a decent size run. With the adjustable tongue stiffness, this skate will suit any players, from the fast and agile forward to the tough and gritty defenseman. One of thing I like most about this skate that is somewhat underrated is how quickly you are able to feel comfortable in these skates. The issue of “breaking in” a new set of skates is completely eliminated with Bauer’s emphasis on creating a top of the line skate with a comfortable fit.
The Best Hockey Skate For Brand New Skaters / Recreational Skaters
Specifications and Features:
- MicroFiber Liner – A soft, moisture wicking liner that does a great job keeping your foot dry
- Large Radius Stainless Steel Runner – The larger than normal radius of the X-LS runner makes it easy to balance on for newer, less stable skaters
- Traditional Lacing System – No fancy pants laces here, just a classic system that will lock your foot in place.
- Comfy Fit – The X-LS isn’t designed for those working to make the next best team, so comfort is of huge importance – reviews from buyers say Bauer nailed it!
- Easy To Balance On – This hockey skate is designed to be easy to skate and balance on, and Bauer has put a larger than normal Stainless Steel runner on to help out.
- Considering the price point, there are no real disadvantages. If someone buys these and decides to start playing more seriously, they should investigate the other skates in our article – This one is best for casual skates indoors or outdoors!
Best Of The Rest
8. CCM JETSPEED FT4 Pro
Specifications and Features:
- One Piece Boot Speed Tech –Similar to the SuperTacks AS3, the new JetSpeed model yields one piece construction and an extremely lightweight boot. This composite skate frame gives you a very responsive feel and provides optimal energy transfer.
- Step Blacksteel – After buying Step Steel, CCM has incorporated their technology across their lineup. The carbon coating really helps reduce friction ont he ice
- Customizable XS Tongue – New for this year CCM gives you the option to swap tongue inserts to increase or decrease boot volume for the perfect fit
- TotalDri Pro + Liner – Featuring moisture-wicking technology and Durazone abrasion protection to keep your feet dry and avoid breaking down over time.
- Superior Quickness – I thought the SuperTacks AS3 were the lightest and fastest skate on the market, but the new JetSpeed FT4 Pro give them a run for their money. The improved blade technology and lightweight frame will improve your speed and acceleration.
- Impressive Durability – With CCM going to all these lengths to make their hockey skates lighter and faster, the LiteFrame and XS tongue combine to give it some extra protection and durability over last years JetSpeed. I also really like the polished steel blade, as they still have a really sharp feel even after a few skates.
- Lightweight Comfort – The one-piece boot make these skates amazingly light and they have a great feel on your feet right off the bat. These took almost no time to break in and the boot provides a really nice responsive flex to get the most power out of your stride.
- The TriTech tongue is a bit thicker than the previous JetSpeed model, and it took a little bit to get used to for me. That being said, it provides more protection and a tighter fit on your skate so it’s worth getting used to.
The JetSpeed lineup is designed to compete with the Bauer Vapor lineup, featuring a tapered fit for smaller volume feet. If you have a small volume foot and love the Vapor’s, the Jetspeed is the only other skate to try out. Combining one piece construction with a swappable tongue and liner, and some advanced technology Step Steel on the bottom, this hockey skate has pretty much everything you would expect out of a top tier set!
9. Bauer Vapor X3.7
Specifications and Features:
- MicroFiber Liner – A soft, moisture wicking liner that does a great job keeping your foot dry
- Tuuk Lightspeed EDGE – The Bauer Vapor X3.7 features the Lightspeed Edge holder which allows you to not only change your blade in a matter of seconds but also will enable skaters to get lower to the ice for sharper turns.
- 3D Injected Composite Outsole – Not only provides increased structural support but also improves heel and ankle lock.
- 40 oz Tongue – A two piece design that gives you support while being very comfortable
- Improved Speed- The Bauer Vapor X3.7 is a very versatile hockey skate and provides superior acceleration with its anatomical design and fit for players.
- Enhanced comfort – Bauer also made sure to include 3D Composite built to balance lateral support and forward flexibility.
- Superior Dependability – There’s not much more you ask for in this Bauer product as it covers a lot of the concerns of hockey players when looking for a protective and comfortable fitting skate.
- Although the Vapor fit may not work for all foot types, for those it does fit it’s a match made in heaven and you won’t find anything more natural.
The Bauer X3.7 hockey skates come complete with some of the technologies featured in the top of the line models, with the Curv Composite construction and the Tuuk Lightspeed Edge holder. Bauer is a premium hockey brand and the X3.7 lives up to that standard, giving you excellent mobility and comfort. The internal construction makes these very easy to break in and feel like you’ve been wearing them for a full season.
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10. CCM Ribcor 100k
Nitty Gritty Details:
- One Piece Boot Flex Tech – The Ribcor is the last skate of the CCM lineup to get the revolutionary 1 piece boot technology, and it really helps it step its game up
- FlexMotion Tongue – A tongue specifically designed to maximize forward flex and go deep into your stride
- TotalDri Pro Liner – No one likes a sweaty, damp, slippery liner! This high performance moisture wicking material keeps your foot dry all game
- Step Blacksteel Blades – Keeping a shaper edge longer than regular stainless steel, the step blades will have you visiting your local skate sharpener less and have you speeding down the ice more!
- Improved Power Transfer – With the Ribcor finally getting CCM’s awesome one piece boot technology, you now have a fantastic, advanced frame with which all the power you put down to your foot will go to the ice, instead of being lost between multiple sections of the hockey skate
- Multi Width Build – The Ribcor was an is CCM’s best wide foot boot in our opinion, but you now have the option to order a regular or tapered width as well, opening the Ribcor hockey skate lineup up for everyone to enjoy.
- Great Foot bed Tech – CCM’s Orthorlite Ultralite molded footbed gives you the lightest and most comfortable footbed possible short of getting a fully custom set of skates
- Two Piece Tech No More – Some people may have liked the flexible, more forgiving two piece boot. Unfortunately, to take this hockey skate upmarket, that had to go but is replaced by what we think is a fantastic replacement in the CCM one piece boot.
The Ribcor started out as a bit of a gimmick skate when it had the pump option back when Sidney Crosby was pumping his skates up for games. CCM has now elevated it to compete with the SuperTacks and JetSpeed lines, giving it all the top technology like one piece boots, StepSteel blades, and the best liner and tongues available at the company. It took a special skate to finally get that 100k number, and this one deserves it!
11. CCM Ribcor 80k
- FlexFrame Technology – Designed with top NHL players, this skate offers excellent forward flexion and lateral stability to maximize energy transfer for every stride.
- Lightweight Construction – CCM has managed to reduce the weight of this skate by 70 grams compared to the last model by use of advanced lightweight materials
- Contoured Heel Lock Design – By creating a high definition and precision ankle boot, CCM has removed the need for the classic Reebok pump, which contributes to the weight savings
- CCM’s FlexFrame technology was designed with top pro’s such as Sidney Crosby and Matt Duchene to provide the best in skate feel and stability. Anyone who has seen Crosby’s edge work or Duchene’s defense man burning speed can attest that these are two people who you want to have input on your skate design
- CCM has oncluded its TOTALDRI liner with abrasion protection as well as multi density memory foam. What does this mean for you? No blisters, and extreme comfort while still getting a top performing hockey skate. They also tossed in a felt tongue with a molded lace bite protection system to protect every part of your foot
- Extremely Lightweight – With the removal of the classic Reebok pump system, CCM has managed to shave 70 grams off of these skates (roughly 10 percent of its weight). Your legs will feel light as a feather as you wheel around the ice all game long
CCM has improved this hockey skate in many ways, and it has negated the need for a pump system for foot support. Some people I know live and die by the Reebok pump system on their skates, and it will be a sad day for them as the Ribcor line moves on without a pump
A hockey skate designed in part by Sidney Crosby and Matt Duchene, with advanced liner and tongue materials thrown in to make your foot feel like its in a slipper? Sign me up! This skate is at the bottom of our list not because of it’s ranking, but because it is the newest member to CCM’s hockey skate family. When you combine excellent power transfer, stability, lightweight, and space age materials in the liner, this skate is a winner in all aspects.
- One Piece Boot – What was once reserved for top of the line skates, the JetSpeed one piece boot is offered in a more budget friendly skate
- Multi Density Memory Foam – This is carried down from the top of the line FT4 and helps wrap the skate right around your feet
- HD Micro-Fiber Liner – This skate comes moisture wicking technology which wicks away sweat and maximizes ventilation allowing your skates to stay dry and fresh all game.
- Extreme Comfort – The CCM JetSpeed FT475 is a skate made for comfort featuring extra padding and additional foam inserts to keep your foot firmly locked in the boot.
- Better Performance – This skate was also designed for anyone hoping to add a little extra power in their stride, the skate is made to have an anatomical fit around your foot providing great energy transfer from your skates to the ice.
- Solid Runners – The XS Steel Runners keep an edge well, and have the Xchange System holder so you can swap blades out on a moments notice if one gets damaged
- As a budget pair, they will be a bit heavier than other skates on our list, but you can’t expect top of the line light weight materials for the bargain that these skates are!
These are a super budget friendly skate coming in around ~250 USD for a pair. They are middle of the range in terms of weight, but also have some great features carried down from the JetSpeed FT4 like the multi density foam and Speedblade Xchange System. If you are skating 1-2 times a week in a mid level league, these could be a fantastic choice!
13. CCM JETSPEED FT485
- SpeedCore 2 – The Speedcore technology built into the skates ensure they are lightweight, thermoformable, and stiff to help boost overall performance for players.
- TotalDri Liner – The CCM Jetspeed FT380 also comes with TotalDri Liner which has a moisture-wicking material and even offers abrasion resistance.
- Rocketframe Composite Quarter Package – A lightweight frame that also features a tapered fit to ensure added comfortability and a great fit.
- SpeedBlade 4.0 Holder – The holder adds 4mm onto your height and allows for greater control when turning and accelerating.
- Increased Speed – These hockey skates features heat-moldable and high quality materials that will enhance the fit of your skate and give players increased speed and control.
- Anatomical Fit – The Rocketframe composite offers a tailored fit for every player and also helps increase the durability of the skate.
- Excellent Support- The CCM Jetspeed FT380 offers excellent support through its tongue and soft comfortable padding on the inside of the skate. Your foot and ankles will thank you after a long grueling game wearing these skates.
The fit of the skate may take some getting used to if you’re buying you first pair of CCM skates, but overall the boot is very lightweight and comfortable.
The Jetspeed FT380 skate is a great pick for your budget, falling in the middle of the price range for Going Bar Downs budget skates but it definitely does not let you down in performance. The top of the line FT4 model is lighter but the CCM FT485 skate is extremely durable for those who want their money to go a long way. The boot is very comfortable and while the rocker is different than a Bauer, I really can’t say anything negative about this skate.
Hockey Skate Comparison Table
|Skate||MSRP (USD)||SKATE BLADE||BOOT||BEST FOR|
|Bauer Vapor Hyperlite||1009.99 - 1159.99||CarbonLite||3D Curv Composite||Players looking for top of the line agility and a lightweight skate|
|CCM SuperTacks AS3||999.99||Step Blacksteel||One Piece Boot||All around skate for players needing the best in all departments|
|Bauer Supreme Ultrasonic||949.99||395||Minimus Carbon UD||Quick release shots like snap shots and wrist shots|
|Bauer Vapor 2X Pro||664.99||405||Minimus Carbon UD||Quick release shots for someone on a budget|
|TRUE TF9||599.99||390||Advanced Carbon Layering||Designed for shot versatility|
|Bauer Supreme 3S Pro||629.99||393||SmartPly||Low kick point for quick release shots|
|Bauer Vapor X3.7||279.99||375||Nanolite Carbon||Low kick point for quick release shots|
|Bauer X-LS||79.99||365||Ultra light carbon fiber||Uniform flex profile for all types of shots|
|CCM JetSpeed FT4 Pro||999.99||395||Minimus Carbon 1400||Mid Kick flex for all types of shot|
|CCM Ribcor 100k||999.99||385||PLD Technology Carbon||Mid Kick point for slapshots, wristshots, and snapshots|
|CCM Ribcor 90k||449.99||410||PLD Technology Carbon||Mid Kick point for slapshots, wristshots, and snapshots|
|CCM JetSpeed FT475||249.99||410||TeXtreme construction||Snap shots, Wrist shots, for players needing a quick release|
|CCM JetSpeed FT485||379.99||410||Minimus Carbon 1400||Mid Kick flex for all types of shot|
Hockey Skate Buying Info
How To Size / Fit Your Hockey Skate
Below you will find some basic information on the parts of a hockey skate and how to fit them properly. We will be writing a more in depth article on how to fit skates at a later date so keep a look out for it! Until then the guide below can point you in the right direction to get a great fit!
Determining Your Hockey Skate Length
The first question everyone asks is ‘How does my shoe size correlate to hockey skate size?’. A hockey skate is usually 1.5 (US) sizes smaller than your shoe size for an adult, and closer to 1 full size down for a child. An adult wearing a 10 US size shoe would start off trying on a size 8.5 skate.
Figuring Out Your Ideal Hockey Skate Width
Hockey skate widths are measured in letters and can belong to one of two width nomenclature systems. The sizing is ranked from narrowest to widest. The classic ranking system is C, D, E, EE, and an alternative system is N, R, and W meaning narrow, regular, and wide. The majority of players will fit into D or R width skates.
How To Heat Mold or Bake Your Hockey Skates
Heat molding hockey skates became standard in the early 2000’s. Before heat molding, hockey players had to find a skate that fit them as best it could out of the box, and then literally through blood, sweat, and tears, break the skates in over a period of 10-20 skates. Massive blisters, foot cramps, and bleeding were not uncommon. Thankfully the manufacturers upped the tech in the skates and it became standard to put advanced materials in a hockey boot which allowed it to be put in a small oven for a few minutes to allow the boot to soften up. Once the boot comes out of the oven, you put your foot in it for 5-10 minutes and allow it to form to your foot. This doesn’t guarantee there will be no break in period, but take it from me, it will drastically reduce the time it takes for the skates to feel perfect on your feet and if done properly can usually make it a blister free affair.
Parts of the Hockey Skate
The hockey skate can be broken down into three main components:
Hockey Skate Boot - What You Put Your Foot In
This part of the hockey skate that you put your foot into and is comprised of an Achilles guard, heel cup, quarter panel (the sides), and a toe cap. Some companies manufacture these pieces separately and then assemble them into the final product. Other newer and more advanced skates have several or all of these pieces manufactured as one striving for a more ‘one piece’ construction which creates a stronger skate with better energy transfer
Hockey Skate Runner - What is It?
This is the part of the skate that is screwed into the boot at the top and holds the blade at the bottom. Although this part of the skate doesn’t get the same attention as new lightweight boots or fancy carbon coated blades, it is an integral part of the skate. Some players will remember the infamous ‘T Blades’ and their 5 circle unique runners from the 2000’s and how drastically different they looked compared to conventional runners.
Hockey Skate Blade - The Steel!
The steel that connects you to the ice. This is the part you get sharpened, and you are extra careful not to step on anything on the way to the ice lest you lose an edge. One of the most symbolic parts of a hockey skate, which has also begun undergoing technological advances of late with companies making harder steels, or coating it with a fine layer of carbon for a stronger edge.
What Is The Best Hockey Skate Brand / Who Makes The Best Hockey Skates?
The Hockey skate landscape is currently dominated by a few main players, as you can see in our reviews. Bauer, CCM (Reebok), and True are currently the biggest companies in the skate market, and pour tens of thousands of dollars every year into material research and engineering in their skates. Easton once made very advanced skates and pioneered one piece skates, but Bauer purchased them several years ago and integrated their technologies into their lineup.
Bauer currently has three skate lineups. The Vapor lineup is an anatomical fit, designed to get players up on their forefoot for quick cornering and ultimate maneuverability. The line is also designed for players with a low arch. The Supreme lineup is designed with straight line speed and maximum power transfer in mind, and for players with a medium arch. The Nexus line blends the Supreme and Vapor technologies, and is built for players with high arches and wider feet.
CCM also has three distinct lineups to go head to head with Bauer. CCM’s lineups in our opinion aren’t quite as distinct as Bauer’s, sharing many technologies, but still each have their own specialty. The Jetspeed lineup boasts a one piece boot for a super lightweight skate and great power transfer. The Ribcor lineup has just been revamped for this year and we will have to wait to see some reviews before we dive into detail too much. The Super Tacks lineup is more about comfort and fit but still delivers amazing performance.
True hockey is relatively new to the skate game, but the skates they produce aren’t. They purchased VH skates, who make completely custom top of the line skates. These skates are the most expensive skates you can buy (but not by as much as you might think) and will offer the best fit you have ever experienced. Many NHL’ers are starting to embrace the true skates, one standout being Dustin Byfuglien.
How We Performed Our Research
Hockey skates have to be tailored to each individual player to maximize your on ice performance and we are going to help you find your pair by going into detail about some of the best hockey skates released this year. Hockey skates are one of the most important piece of equipment a player owns and there is nothing worse than having your skates hold you back. Read on for reviews that break down everything you need to know like manufacturers specs, strengths of the equipment, possible weaknesses, and overall consumer value.
We will be reviewing the best senior hockey skates from all the major brands including CCM, Bauer, and True to help you get peak performance and go bar down all the time. We will layout the skates and rank them for durability, fit, weight, and cost. These skates are all top of the line and are sure to help your game, but we need you to read through our best hockey skates of 2021 article in order to make the choice that gives the best set of skates for your game.
At the bottom of our article we have a guide on skate fitting and buying basics, you will see it right after our last skate review.
Directly below is our comparison table of all the skates we looked at. Click on the skate name to jump to the review, or click the flag to find the best price in your country!
Conclusion - What Is Our Favorite Skate?
We have talked about some of the best hockey skates on the market today, and really it’s all about finding the most comfortable fit for your game. Trust me, I have tried all the skates mentioned above and I love each and every one of them in their own way. This is the most important piece of equipment you play with and it directly impacts your ability to be effective and dominant on the ice. My personal favorite is the Bauer Vapor Hyperlite, this model is packed with new technology, and it looks amazing to boot.
If anyone has an opinion or question on any of the skates I have talked about, we’d love to hear from you.