I am a small-statured skater. Junior sized, in fact. There are certain things some folks can take for granted, like having the gamut of choice when it comes to of skate boots as your size is standard (I’m looking at you stock Antiks owners).
I wear size 3 skate boots and I have feet that go toward the wide side. When I went to my derby-owned store for skates, I was given two options given my shoe size: Sure Grip Rebels or Riedell 125s.
I chose the 125s: full leather, handmade speed boots. Simple, but effective. Going back, I’d choose them again and again.
The good: The breaking-in process was incredible easy and they broke in beautifully. No blood, no tears. They’re unlined. That translates to feeling like a second skin when you’re wearing them. They’re incredibly light. I never feel like my foot is lifting up out of the narrow heel cup – the fit is heavenly. No padding within the boot means that nothing is going to disintegrate on my or get weird and squishy. The way they fit now is how they fit until I wear them through.
The bad: The leather is so soft that there is virtually no lateral support in this boot. I have (had) weak ankes. Blame my genes. The second week I skated in these, I twisted my ankle, taking me out for weeks. While they do thus make you build up strength in the stabilizer muscles around the ankes (which is a good thing) I’m sure the gear-junkies out there are cringing at the lost power that is going laterally due to the softness of the boot rather than being directed into sole and the skate plate. I’m ok with that. If I wanted a performance boot when I started derby, I’d have gone a completely different
A great higher-end starter boot, for sure. I’ll wear these until there’s nothing left but sole and mounting hardware before I replace them.