Never one to do anything ordinary, my husband came home from a visit with his sister, in 1995, with a new obsession. After a couple of hours in rented rollerblades at a city park he decided that he wanted to rollerblade long distances. He thinks that 20 miles for an outing is about right, and sometimes skates to a nearby town. This includes hills, real hills! I think he is just plain nuts. Going downhill at 60 mph on a bicycle I can do; 30 mph on my feet... I don’t think so!
The skates he chose were Rollerblade Cool Blades, and he ordered them with special wheels for road use. These hard rubber wheels are labeled Durometer 78A. He figures that he has skated about 1000 miles on these, and they are still holding up.
These skates have a hard outer shell with many cut-out spaces for ventilation. There is a softer, built-in inner boot that surrounds the foot.
The closures have a strap that feeds through a rachet-like clip to tighten. These are really easy to loosen simply by pressing down on the clip, and hubby likes those.
He says that they don’t make skates with this type of braking system any more, but that he really likes the way this one works. Rather than tipping your foot back to brake, the right boot has a special mechanism that extends beyond the heel of the shoe. To stop you bend your right knee a bit and press your leg forward. This pushes that mechanism down and engages the brake plate with the pavement.
These skates have held up really well, with no serious wear anywhere, no broken clips, and the inner padding is not even breaking down.
This model is no longer made, but you might find them used. Hubby really likes these and actually does not want to get a newer model.