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Artistic Skating Forum Discussions about any topic related to artistic roller skating including quad artistic skating, inline figure skating, pairs, dance, synchronized skating, and show skating.

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Old June 10th, 2019, 04:11 AM   #1
learning2sk8
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Default 1 skate for all

It appears everything is specialized these days as far as boots, plates and wheels. So, does a person need three or more pair of skates to be competitive? Can one pair of boots and one plate suffice with different wheels/bearings for the different events? If so, what would you recommend? I realize that this is a compromise in one or more areas, but it looks like a person could have one very nice set up for what the cost of three would be. Appreciate any thoughts.

I am new to skating, starting after retirement and currently have a Riedell 120 boot, Crazy Venus plate and Bones team logo 98A wheels. Hope to use these to get to Bronze level and want to try to work up the levels if time and ability allow. Again, thoughts on a one pair set up are appreciated.
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Old June 15th, 2019, 12:01 PM   #2
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It appears everything is specialized these days as far as boots, plates and wheels. So, does a person need three or more pair of skates to be competitive? Can one pair of boots and one plate suffice with different wheels/bearings for the different events? If so, what would you recommend? I realize that this is a compromise in one or more areas, but it looks like a person could have one very nice set up for what the cost of three would be. Appreciate any thoughts.

I am new to skating, starting after retirement and currently have a Riedell 120 boot, Crazy Venus plate and Bones team logo 98A wheels. Hope to use these to get to Bronze level and want to try to work up the levels if time and ability allow. Again, thoughts on a one pair set up are appreciated.
if your talking artistic for years people used 1 set of skates and had different wheels and bearings for events. seems these days they have a different setup for each event or at least 2 setups. I think u can get away with 1 for dance and freestyle and might need a heavier boot for figures.
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Old June 15th, 2019, 06:44 PM   #3
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It all depends on what you want to do on your skates and what compromises you are wiling to make for each discipline.

It is definitely possible to have a single pair of skates to use for dance, artistic, freestyle, speeds etc but they won't be ideal, and will limit you in certain areas.

For example, most speed skates are shoes rather than boots as they are lighter and you do not need the ankle support, but if you progress artistically you will need ankle support of jumps.

Derby boots tend to have more aggressive plate set up, but this might not be ideal for figures or freestyle.

Having said all this, you can learn and perform the basics of all disciplines with the skates and plates you have. You might want 2 sets of wheels, 57mm, hard wheel for artistic/freestyle, 62mm or larger for speed/derby for example.

I too have the 120 boot, currently on a Falcon F-16 plate but I'm getting some Crazy Venus too. Using the stock Radar Riva wheels whilst I wait for some Art Elites to arrive. These will suit me as I want to focus on artistic skating, but on the days I want to session skate or just go round at speed I'll just swap out the wheels for some larger ones, maybe tighten the trucks a little.

So in short, yes you can have a single skate to do many things but you will have to compromise in some areas and it will limit what you can achieve in certain disciplines.
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Old June 18th, 2019, 03:47 PM   #4
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Thanks for the replies. I will be concentrating on dance and figures. Might try freestyle, but little if any jumping. Just getting too old for roller derby, speed and some of the other disciplines.

I will likely continue with what I have for a while. My boots originally came with Sure Grip Competitor plates which I found to be totally dead feeling. Bought the Venus and it was a BIG difference. Thinking that wheels will also have a pretty big effect on performance. I have changed from Bones Red bearings to the Speed Six and that was a fairly significant change as well.

I understand that figures work better with a stiffer boot, so wonder if I might be able to use an ankle brace with reinforcement to help act as a stiffer boot? Lots to take in and learn. Some people make things look so simple and I get irritated thinking I should be able to do the moves as well as them. Just hope that I can get good enough to feel like entering some competition might not be too intimidating.

Good to know that some people still try to get by with one set up.
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Old June 18th, 2019, 08:47 PM   #5
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It appears everything is specialized these days as far as boots, plates and wheels. So, does a person need three or more pair of skates to be competitive? Can one pair of boots and one plate suffice with different wheels/bearings for the different events? If so, what would you recommend? I realize that this is a compromise in one or more areas, but it looks like a person could have one very nice set up for what the cost of three would be. Appreciate any thoughts.

I am new to skating, starting after retirement and currently have a Riedell 120 boot, Crazy Venus plate and Bones team logo 98A wheels. Hope to use these to get to Bronze level and want to try to work up the levels if time and ability allow. Again, thoughts on a one pair set up are appreciated.
This isn't an easy question to answer. Ok...it is easy, but you wont like the answer. Think of skates like a good pair of shoes. Would you run, play tennis, and walk around town in the same shoes? Sure...at beginner levels. Once you started seriously running or playing tennis, that wouldn't work. Same with a pair of skates. You can make it work, swapping pieces out, but at some point it just doesn't work very well.

If you got a quality pair of skates with an adjustable plate, you could survive a while by swapping out wheels and bearings and adjusting the actions on the skates. The skates you described above are beginner level skates and really aren't good for much beyond recreational skating. We use that setup to transition little kids from rental skates to their own skates. Once they get competitive, we get them minimum competitive level skates.

If you plan to move up past bronze, you'll probably want to invest in discipline specific skates at some point. You could probably get away with two pairs. One for dance and regular skating ("freestyle") and one for figures/loops.

Different boots, plates, and wheels accomplish different things. Constantly meddling with the actions of the skates isn't ideal. Could you do it? Yes. But, it's just not very good.
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Old June 19th, 2019, 03:16 AM   #6
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Thanks for the reply Sir Aaron. We went to watch regionals in Waco and I noticed that everyone had different set ups for different events. Being old and poor, I was just wondering if anybody tried to get by with one "do-it-all" set up. Seems that is not very viable anymore.

Are you by chance with Chanpions? They have some amazing young skaters coming thru their program.
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Old June 19th, 2019, 02:30 PM   #7
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Hi Learning,

(this is about skates and not about shoes, so don't get flustered thinking I am not talking about skates)

I like what Sir Aaron said, with some changes. I use to use sneakers for everything but after I married, my wife decided I should wear something more formal for everyday. I wanted comfort. We started looking and found some ECCO shoes that looks great and are very comfortable. I never heard of them before that. They aren't a spit and polish shoe but they are very good looking and I can go for a morning run.

What I am saying there is that there can be great compromises that will do well up to Gold Level skating.

When I competed, I could afford only one high quality competition pair of skates. A lot of my peers and top skaters had several pair of skates. I did very well and sometimes better with one pair. There is a yin and yang with one pair of skates. They are not specific set up so you will probably not be able to reach your absolute level, but the other side of the coin is that most people will never reach that level no matter what their skate setup is and if a skater has a good in-between setup, they will not have to readjust to different actions and stiffness all the time. Concentration can be placed on technique instead of readjustment. As I said: yin and yang.

My setup was very good for me and at the time (late 60's, early 70's) it was top of the line with some minor sacrifices. I started with a 192 boot which was changed later to a 220. I had for all my competition years a Snyder super deluxe plate. My wheels were 57mm that were matched to the floor I was skating on, sometimes I had more wheels if I had to change rinks. I mostly ran on fafnir bearings. I used Snyder stops. I did everything (freestyle, dance, figures) on those skates and I was very good at racing in sessions with that setup. for real speed skating I had a real pair of speed skates but rarely used them since I never competed, but only practiced with the speed team.

I set my action very tight so, it was actually good for my dance and freestyle. My 220 boots were stiff enough for the figures but with enough flex to do everything else. Yes, it wasn't perfect for any one discipline but I did take a lot of first places in inter-club meets and I was able to earn a spot at nationals in freestyle in 1972 (I never got to go because I enlisted in the military before nationals).

What I am trying to say is that you can do all with the one setup, but you have to be intentional and get a high quality setup with specific characteristics. you have to understand that it won't take you to gold level performance but would you ever hit that level anyway even with separate skates. yes, it is nice to have a pair of spit polished black leather shoes to go ballroom dancing, but how often does a person need those shoes.

If you want my recommendation:
1. Pick a primary skating discipline and choose your skate with that in mind first.
2. Pick your secondary discipline and tweak your skates according to that.
3. Let your 3rd discipline happen with what you have already configured.

Suggested configurations: (this is what I would do now)

1. Plate: snyder super-deluxe. This is great and strong for freestyle, and you can get good action for dance also.
2. Wheels: 57mm, not too slick but not too tight for your floor. This will take some practice. Harder wheels roll faster, softer wheels stick better (generally this is true but could fool you sometimes).
3. Boot: I would go with the 297 professional because it is stiff and flexible at the same it is stiff enough to allow a good edge. I would use the 220 again but they are now being constructed way too stiff for me. I like enough ankle to hit heavy leans without struggling and yet a good boot frame to hold no matter how hard I lean at my ankle and able to assist with returning from my lean.

Down side is that the plate is heavier than most of the modern plates but it has a great stability. The action is not as deep as the imperial plate but this will also make sure you intentionally make an edge instead of an accidental wobble causing the lean.

That is what I would recommend for a 1 pair setup.

A side note: you lean at the ankle, not at the waist (95% of the time) so the boot and plate combination should be made to make the lean easy and natural.
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Old June 20th, 2019, 03:13 PM   #8
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That is a very helpful reply. Actually, my wife has been skating for all her life and is just getting back into it after a 20 year layoff. The recommendations you give are what one of the top coaches in the area recommended for her (except wheels). I started skating just to go with her, and she originally wanted me to get a $100 skate figuring I would just dink around a bit and quit. I felt if I was going to go, I should at least have a decent leather boot, so bought the Riedell set up. It is a large learning curve, but I am trying to pick up what I can from watching/listening to others. It certainly is not as easy as it looks.

I have often heard that the person using one piece of equipment for several different things is either too poor to have more or knows how to use that one piece very well. There isn't a lot of chance I will ever progress to the top level, but hopefully I can get to a point where better equipment might enhance my abilities. From what I see, it appears that boots, plate, wheels, etc. for a single application run $500 or so minimum (a lot more is easily possible). So, for $1500 or so, a person can have three individual set ups. A person could have a custom boot with a nice plate and a couple of different wheels for that price or less. A semi custom boot or stock, like the 297 would lower cost considerably and give money for coaching. At least that is my thinking.
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Old June 20th, 2019, 08:43 PM   #9
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Thanks for the reply Sir Aaron. We went to watch regionals in Waco and I noticed that everyone had different set ups for different events. Being old and poor, I was just wondering if anybody tried to get by with one "do-it-all" set up. Seems that is not very viable anymore.

Are you by chance with Chanpions? They have some amazing young skaters coming thru their program.
I am not with Champions (nor have I ever been). Champions is from Spring, Texas (outside Houston) and run by Keri Hefner. She has the top two dance skaters in the country. I'm no longer in Texas. I moved to Florida so my oldest daughter could skate full-time with her partner under the coach here. I am an assistant coach here (in Florida) on what I consider to be the best staff in skating. We have about 20 kids on our competitive team.

Virtually every kid and new adult starts off with a "do it all" set up. Usually a Riedell Angel setup then progresses to a Edea Rondo with a Roll Line Variant M plate. At an early level you aren't good enough to realize the difference in wheels, plates and boots...and frankly, with Roll Line plates there isn't much difference between most of frames anyways. There comes a point where we have to have the conversation (usually with parents) about getting better and multiple pairs of skates. Some kids still don't get multiple pairs and they are usually the ones who progress the slowest. (not just because of skates but if they don't pay for skates they probably wont pay for enough lessons either.)


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That is a very helpful reply. Actually, my wife has been skating for all her life and is just getting back into it after a 20 year layoff. The recommendations you give are what one of the top coaches in the area recommended for her (except wheels). I started skating just to go with her, and she originally wanted me to get a $100 skate figuring I would just dink around a bit and quit. I felt if I was going to go, I should at least have a decent leather boot, so bought the Riedell set up. It is a large learning curve, but I am trying to pick up what I can from watching/listening to others. It certainly is not as easy as it looks.

I have often heard that the person using one piece of equipment for several different things is either too poor to have more or knows how to use that one piece very well. There isn't a lot of chance I will ever progress to the top level, but hopefully I can get to a point where better equipment might enhance my abilities. From what I see, it appears that boots, plate, wheels, etc. for a single application run $500 or so minimum (a lot more is easily possible). So, for $1500 or so, a person can have three individual set ups. A person could have a custom boot with a nice plate and a couple of different wheels for that price or less. A semi custom boot or stock, like the 297 would lower cost considerably and give money for coaching. At least that is my thinking.
BLECH. And BLECH. Riedell 297s? Snyder Super Deluxe? The 297 is an extremely soft boot, IMO, and not suitable for much except for old-timers who prefer comfort over performance. Riedell is also going to be more expensive than EDEA. At least if you get a Riedell get a custom boot made or get an stiffer boot...like a bronze star. As for a plate....nobody, except old-timers, skates on a Snyder super deluxe. Ugh. That's like driving a low level Honda Civic for the same money you could drive a BMW. Why would you do that? Get a Roll Line Plate. Variant M if you don't want to spend much money. As for wheels, until you start doing turns, you really don't need slick wheels. Get a stickier dance wheel....Like a 95 ICE or maybe some white Komplex Bolero.

You probably don't need three pairs of skates. You need figure skates and "other" skates. But first and foremost, I'd start with one pair of really good skates and go from there. After a while you'll get a better feel for what you are able to do and what's right for you.
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Old June 21st, 2019, 12:59 PM   #10
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Default Different strokes for different folks

I never liked stiff boots. My ankles were strong and steady always and I found that I could do more with more flex in my boots for my footwork. I know many skaters want stiff boots but I have a different preference.

Yes, Super deluxe is old school and they are heavy, and I will agree to that. That still doesn't negate that many gold level skaters used them in the day and swore by them. The down side of the super deluxe is that they are much heavier and lower response. I find the heavy and slower response a plus, especially to a new skater. It provides stability instead of unintentional movement. They will still respond well, just not as easily or better yet, not as unintentionally. The heavy build gave me more of a feeling that I had a strong support as opposed to my Snyder advantage. It is just my personal feelings. I could do well on the old and the new tech plates but after using both, I think I prefer the heavier old school. Sir Aaron, you can choke and puke, but it feels better for me on the heavier old school. Some people love liver, some don't. On the old school, I could do triples and my spins and footwork. I could dance and figures. I also felt better on them and I could rex and speed skate in sessions with them very well.

Learning, It would cost you more than $500 for a good setup. The Super Deluxe plates are about $375 just by themselves. A pair of boots from 220, to 297 or other models in that range cost about $250 to $450. The 220 is about $250 and they can be softened from riedell for an extra charge if you want a 220 not as stiff. But the cheaper boots (which I have tried, like the 120) just don't hold up to hard practice.

Overall you are looking more at a realistic price of $800 to $1,200 for a good pair of competition setup skates because you also need toe stops, bearings and wheels to add to that and also tax and shipping and handling and build cost of you buy from a place like Connies Skate Place. And just a plug for Connies: They are long time competition skaters and will do a correct build and provide good advice if you would like it. I would trust them more than the local rink of today who has a kid off the street putting the skates together. Just my not so humble opinion...
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Old June 21st, 2019, 04:34 PM   #11
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I never liked stiff boots.
Yes, a lot of old timers like yourself love the 297s. One guy I know skates with his boots untied and can do loops with a cup of coffee in his hand. And I've sold a number of pairs to old timers who love the boots and love the updated 297s. Also had a lot of success putting those same people into custom boots for dance and figures based on their unique needs. Riedell makes an excellent custom boot, if you like the traditional leather. Honestly, the shop I used to work for made more money off the Riedell's than other boots. If you a traditional leather boot, they're a fantastic company. I think their custom boots are better than Harlick.


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Yes, Super deluxe is old school and they are heavy, and I will agree to that. That still doesn't negate that many gold level skaters used them in the day and swore by them.
LOL. Back in the day.... I love it.

There is something to be said for the heavy weight of the plate. A lot of coaches now swear by the Hudor plate because of the very heavy weight. However, the super deluxe is ugly, difficult to adjust on the fly, and only uses rubber cushions.


Quote:
It feels better for me on the heavier old school. Some people love liver, some don't. On the old school, I could do triples and my spins and footwork. I could dance and figures. I also felt better on them and I could rex and speed skate in sessions with them very well.
Well, you did all those things because you were a good skater. A good skater can overcome a lot of deficiencies. The skate technology of the new frames has significantly improved in every measure. Sure, you're comfortable in what you've been wearing since childhood. I get it. And your comfort might be the most important aspect of fitting you for a decent skate now. But I'd never recommend a new skater start with that setup.

Quote:
Overall you are looking more at a realistic price of $800 to $1,200 for a good pair of competition setup skates because you also need toe stops, bearings and wheels to add to that and also tax and shipping and handling and build cost of you buy from a place like Connies Skate Place. And just a plug for Connies: They are long time competition skaters and will do a correct build and provide good advice if you would like it. I would trust them more than the local rink of today who has a kid off the street putting the skates together.
If you want to go with an Edea/Roll Line setup, that would be less expensive and allow for more flexibility. That's another advantage of the newer boots and plates. You can't overboot and the frames are much easier to adjust with click action. I put all new skaters in Edea now. (whereas before, I used to put everyone in Riedell or Jackson).

I've also done much business with Connie's. Very good people.
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Old June 21st, 2019, 06:57 PM   #12
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Hi Sir Aaron,
Hard to argue with that.
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Old June 21st, 2019, 07:01 PM   #13
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Sir Aaron,
Do you ever get over to Tampa? That was my old stomping ground back in the 60's and early 70's.

One of my peers was teaching there but not sure if he is still there now. His daughter was also skating there. His name is Paul Hinton. Really a great guy.
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Old June 21st, 2019, 07:41 PM   #14
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Sir Aaron,
Do you ever get over to Tampa? That was my old stomping ground back in the 60's and early 70's.

One of my peers was teaching there but not sure if he is still there now. His daughter was also skating there. His name is Paul Hinton. Really a great guy.
We only go over there for meets or seminars or something like that. I don't skate outside of my rink, because frankly, it's one of the best rinks in the country.
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Old June 22nd, 2019, 11:07 AM   #15
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We only go over there for meets or seminars or something like that. I don't skate outside of my rink, because frankly, it's one of the best rinks in the country.
it might be the only rink left in the country lol,,,,no just joking,,,but fewer every year,,,,another closing next week in nh, only rink left there.

we have a great rink in taunton ma, silver city. others in many states too that are well taken care of.
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Old June 24th, 2019, 02:48 AM   #16
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I've got a lot of views about the downfall of skating rinks and our ability as a sport to adapt and change. When you see where people in other countries skate, we've been entirely too dependent on skating rinks.
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Old July 13th, 2019, 03:47 PM   #17
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Smile This is an old post.

I don't know what the gentleman ended up with or if he ever took lessons and hopefully entered competition.

The answer is yes and you could win....Let's say you are an adult... a typical event for an adult is Div 2...age 50-64 years old...All figures are forward..you don't skate backwards and you don't make or do turns, brackets...etc.

Same goes for Dance in that division and most "Adult" skating divisions...you only skate forward..you don't do turns and you don't skate backwards...

I know one Lady who wins...she is excellent or very good in figures..She skates on a pair of Sure Grip Classic Plates...Reidell 120 boots, Bones regular bearings and Bones 101A wheels...Like I say she is the best in her division in solo dance and got 2nd in figures...

Let me tell you something about Adult Freestlye...In Southern California there is one contestant..He's over 60 years old...At Regionals there on are only two competitors and I heard that one guy is over 70 but I don't believe it..At Nationals in the Adult Freestyle..I bet there will only be 7 skaters...for the men.

I doubt if the winner will have anything more than a axel...OF Camel and OB camel...He will probably be 62 years old..


Sincerely,

Larry Otani


Oh,,,what do I skate on..Yes I have two very different setups..

Figures, I skate on a Roll Line "Loop" Plate..with Komplex figure wheels and Berry boots. Bones Ceramic Bearings. I forgot the name of my "Loop" Plate..

For Solo Dance I skate on a Synder Royal Plate...Berry Boot and Roll Line 97A Wheels..and some regular Bones Bearings. Yes the Synder Plate is a special speed plate with the Titanium axels and King pins and the cushions are the soft ones...small diameter and conical for fast truck action.

There are three very reactive plates...I would put them in this order....Roll Line Dance Plate, very reactive.....Synder Royal Plate...2nd most reactive with there conical cushions and 45 degree trucks/action and third the Roll Line "Loop" Plate..less reactive..I forgot the name of my older Roll Line "Loop" plate.

I will say this.for dance next year I'm going back to the roll Line Dance Plate...Berry Boots and a combinations of Bones 103A and 101 Wheels and Bones Ceramic Bearings...I just want to try the Roll Line Dance Plates again and my boots are the normal Freestyle/ Figure Berry Boots and I like the Bones ceramic bearings..the Wheels I might go to anything after a while..but probably will stick to something grippier like a Roll Line ICE wheel....92A-97A hardness.


Hope that helps and that is my story...lol! Oh I have a chance to get 3rd in solo dance and a chance to get 2nd in Adult figures...Div 2, Bronze solo Dance Men and Div 2 Silver Mens Figures...
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Old July 16th, 2019, 03:04 AM   #18
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Thanks for the replies. Larry, I appreciate the information. Yes, I am an adult (actually nearly 67, so guess I would be a bronze 3). Nice to know that there isn't a lot of backward skating as that is something that I have problems with so far. My legs just do not cooperate for things like mohawks, going forward ot backwards in normal manner, etc.

I am still thinking about a set up. Actually if things do not straighten up, I may not have to worry about it. I have Crohn's disease, which had been in remission until a recent bout of shingles reactivated it. I am losing weight and have little energy. So, unless I can get things back under control, I probably won't be doing a lot of skating.

I was thinking about the Mistral plate as an "all round" but will take a strong look at the Dance plate. Don't plan on jumps or anything fancy, so if it works for figures as well as dance, it would get strong consideration. Right now, I am thinking one good pair of boots and a good plate would likely serve me well.
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