Have you ever been walking down the street and suddenly see someone (typically a young kid) glide by as if on roller skates, but actually wearing what appear to be regular running shoes? You’ve just witnessed Heelys, the latest trend in running shoe innovation. Heelys truly do look and act like a normal pair of trainers, but they’re actually wheel shoes roller skates with hidden wheels in the heels allowing the wearer to roll at will. This article is a quick primer on how to use Heelys roller shoes.
For the new user of Heelys, it’s imperative to use safety equipment in case of a fall. Knee pads, elbow pads, wrist guards and a helmet are all essential safety gear for the Heely shoe newbie. And until you get the hang of things, use the buddy system to ensure you remain stable as you begin to roll.
Start On Your Toes
Because the wheels are in the heel of the shoes, your toes will be your point of stability. After tying up your shoes in the sitting position stand up onto your toes. Get used to this feeling as your toes will play an important role in control and stopping.
Find Your Balance Point
Make sure you’re holding onto your friend, a wall or something stable as you get in the toe standing position. Place one foot in front of the the other and lean back onto your heels allowing both wheels to engage with the ground. From this position you should be able to find the balance point on the wheels. If you begin to lose your balance, simply move your weight back onto your toes.
It helps to have your friend pull you along at first until you get used to the feeling of rolling on your heels. You may also want to use an adjacent wall or railing for added balance. If you begin to lose your balance, just step back onto your toes to stop the rolling movement. Another way to stop is use the heel of your front foot. Lean it back until the wheel is disengaged from the ground and the rubber edge of the heel brings you to a stop.
Step, Plant And Kick
To start rolling on your own, use the technique know as the step, plant and kick. Take a step with your left foot landing your toe onto the ground. Follow through with the right heel and plant the roller wheel onto the ground. Kick with the left toe and allow the planted wheel on your right foot to glide forward. Set your left heel on the ground, find your balance point and continue to glide on both wheels. Continue to kick with your toes to build speed and momentum.
With a little practice you’ll get used to Heelys shoes and be able to glide to your heart’s content. Make sure to keep the wheels clean for a smooth ride. You can easily pop the wheels out for cleaning or if you’re in the need of a regular shoe. Make sure the wheels are securely attached when replacing them. Don’t use the wheels in crowded areas, on the road or on steep hills.