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Pro Shop Essentials

By Ontario Minor Hockey Association, 11/06/14, 2:30PM EST


What sharpening is best for your game?

There is a good chance you can get more out of your skate sharpening’s with a better understanding of the process mixed with the knowledge of how to apply it to your performance. Understanding the concept of hollows and profiles will help maximize your performance on the ice.


  1. What type of hollow fits my game?
    The two most standard forms of skate sharpening are the traditional hollow and the flat bottom V (FBV). The traditional hollow is a more durable sharpening meaning it will last longer on the blade but you will give up some advantages to a more aggressive hollow. The FBV sharpening is designed to maximize the bite as the edges are smaller and finer taking less time to dig into the surface, while maximizing the glide. It is designed to reduce the amount of friction between the ice and the blade.

    What time of year is it, how hard or soft is the ice, what type of skater are you, what type of feel do you like on the ice. All these factors can have an influence on the type of hollow you choose. The first thing to determine is whether you want bite (the amount the blade digs in) or glide (how easy the runner travels across the ice), perhaps you want a mix of both. For players that want bite, a deeper hollow will benefit you, as it will allow the blade to dig deeper into the ice; for players looking for more glide, a shallower hollow is preferred allowing the skate to glide better with less friction.
  2. What type of profile is best for me?
    A profile or radius refers to the shape of the blade/runner. Profiling is the process of fitting the blade of the skate for the player’s specific needs. Skates out of the box come with a standard radius; 9, 10, 11 ft etc. Profiling allows us to alter the shape of the runner to offer a higher level of performance.

    Today’s player demands more, and the new method of profiling comes in the form of progressive a radius. This is a system that truly fits the blade for the player’s full set of needs offering a full complement of speed, power and agility. A progressive radius applies a number of radius’ across the entire length of the blade which allows the runner to react most efficiently to whatever the player is doing.


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