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Roller skates for children

Updated on September 28, 2011

At a recent family holiday to Center Parcs this summer, my youngest daughter learned to skate. Since returning home, she has been to the roller disco every Saturday evening with her friends. This inspired me to write an article on roller skates as they are available for every age and stage of children.

Safety and protection for skaters

It is always a good idea to ensure that your son/daughter wears safety protection when skating to avoid broken bones and nasty falls. There are many different pads and safety gear on the market and it is worth investing in these.

Safety Helmet

A good sturdy helmet is essential to protect their heads from bumps and knocks.

Knee and elbow pads

Can save a lot of tears when they fall over which is bound to happen numerous times, especially when they are just starting out.

Wrist guards

Essential protection for their wrists, as the strain of a fall is lessened by wearing these.

Starter skates are ideal for young children just learning to skate. Usually made of durable plastic, they are adjustable to a few shoe sizes and come in a range of colors to suit both boys and girls. The recommended age for starter skates is from 3-5 years old.

Tri skates as the name suggests is a skate which has three wheels, one at the front and two at the rear. They offer better balance for young learners and are much easier to control direction with the front leading wheel than it is with quad skates. There are a huge range of colors and designs on the market and are aimed at children of 4+ years. They are a natural progression from the starter skates.

Again, quad skates are suitable for boys and girls and the color and style choice is vast. They can be purchased for children as well as adult sizes. They have four wheels with a stopper at the front of each skate and replacement wheels and stoppers can also be sourced easily.

Inline skates feature three, four or even five wheels which are in a straight line, with the brake or stopper fitted to the rear. Their most commonly used name are rollerblades and are very popular amongst tweens and teens, although they are available in adult sizes. Mostly used when the child has become confident on skates and have perfected their balance.

Basically, these are two wheels on a bar which you attach to your shoes or trainers. They are relatively cheap to buy in comparison to quad or inline skates, but are obviously a lot less durable. As they have to stopper or brake, the only way to slow down is to use he heel or toe of your trainers, which could be costly in the long term!

Roller skating is becoming much more popular than in recent years. Many sports centres and community halls around the country have skating sessions and roller discos. It may be worth checking your local area to find out about local skate parks as these are great for young ones to practice their new found skill!


There are all sorts of accessories available to glam up your skates and customize them to your own taste. If you are stuck for gift ideas for a skater, these are a few ideas:

  • Light up skate wheels. Simply take off the old wheels and replace with jazzy glow in the dark or wheels that light up as they rotate. (available on line and at most large sports shops.)
  • Crazy laces - these come in a huge assortment of designs and patterns including some funky neon ones.
  • Skate bag - An ideal gift to carry their skates in. Again there is a large selection to choose from.
  • Skate Liners - These provide extra padding for added comfort and are usually used in conjunction with inline skates.
  • Replacement stoppers for quad skates - A range of colorful and shimmery stoppers can be bought.
  • Leg warmers/socks - Guaranteed to be a hit with any child.


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    • jacqui2011 profile image

      jacqui2011 6 years ago from Norfolk, UK

      @ randomcreative - Me too, I loved roller skating as a child. I still remember my first pair of skates - they would be antiques now if I'd kept them!

    • randomcreative profile image

      Rose Clearfield 6 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Aw, it's nice to know that you can still buy roller skates. I switched to blades when I was in middle school and haven't looked back, but I loved to roller skate when I was little.