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Author Topic: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance  (Read 2410 times)

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Offline AgnesNitt

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Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« on: January 14, 2012, 11:02:23 AM »
My ultima mirages have 4 years of skating on them, and the rocker is getting a little flatter than I like and well, I'm ready for a change.

I'm not really interested in a dance blade. That stubby tail makes me nervous, and anyway, I'm not at that level.

I'm just interested in a freestyle length blade without too much toepick. I don't jump so it's not an issue. Something that's easy to skate on would be nice, by that I mean that I hear some blades don't require as much power. That would be nice as I don't have power.
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Offline MimiG

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #1 on: January 14, 2012, 11:22:56 AM »
I passed through my gold tests (and the equivalent of Senior MITF) on Coronation Comets, my friend did the same on Coro Aces. I think you'd be fine with anything at that level. I really liked the Comets, even though they aren't all that popular - good glide, very stable, but theoretically harder to turn & spin. I've always had pretty strong spins though, and never noticed the difference when I made the switch from Aces.

Offline fsk8r

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #2 on: January 14, 2012, 12:33:34 PM »
My sister is in Ultima Mirages as well and we were just talking to the skate sharpener today about new blades. He was recommending Coronation Aces to her. And her comment was that when she bought the Mirages the toe pick on the Aces scared her. The Aces toepick matches that of the Ultima Legacy. Ironically she's just started coaching, skates dance and free. She actually uses the toepick!
Everyone recommends moving up to the higher level blades (which is what I would classify the Aces as), but if you've been happy on the Mirages and don't think you're outskating the blades just yet, why not just get the same again? Club 2000 (It's eith MK or Wilson but I can't remember who) is another blade which is a similar level to the Mirage if you're thinking about switching manufacturer.

As a comment about stubby dance tails, i've got synchro and free blades and synchro blades are like dance in being short. I've never had an issue with falling off the blade. I have managed to forget the tail when wearing free blades and dug the tail in the ice. Reminds you to turn your foot out when you do that.

Offline Skittl1321

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2012, 01:25:03 PM »
I think the Legacy or Protege is the typical step up from the Mirage (if you want to stay with Ultima).  The problem is- they have pretty big toe picks- I have a major dragging problem I didn't have before switching.  If you don't want toe pick, I wouldn't recommend either (the only difference between the two is one has a straight cut and one has a cross cut toe pick).  I think if you are happy with the Mirage, it makes sense to stick with it. 

Have you thought about synchro blades?  That gives you a little bit of a shorter blade, but not as short as dance blade (I think- I could be totally wrong).   I do think sticking with the bigger tail is probably a good idea for you, since you don't like back 3-turns.  Losing that tail makes them tougher, but the short heel will make close together steps be less scary.


Oh! Ultima has a new blade called Aspire.  I think it is a step up from Mirage, but they are still classifying it as a beginner freestyle blade.  That might give you somewhere to go without getting into killer toe pick territory.

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2012, 04:03:50 PM »
There are several older adults at my rink who skate in the Ultima Synchro blades - one does dance and low freestyle, and the other pretty much only does low freestyle in them.  Both seem to like them a lot due to the reduced chance of stepping on a heel.

Offline AgnesNitt

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2012, 07:19:29 PM »
Thanks for the suggestions! I want to ditch the Mirages as they're difficult to turn in, so I guess what I'm really looking for is 'easy to turn in'. I really have to haul to turn in the Mirages.

I asked coach and he likes Wilson coronation dance, which has a 7 foot rocker. Mirages only have an 8 foot rocker, so it would be a big change to go to a 7 foot rocker like Coronation Ace (or 4 Aces with the straight cut toe rake) or even the majestic (which I know nothing about). So I'm leaning to the Aces or the 4 Aces.

But keep the suggestions and comments coming. I'm all ears!
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Offline Skittl1321

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #6 on: January 14, 2012, 08:19:48 PM »
Thanks for the suggestions! I want to ditch the Mirages as they're difficult to turn in, so I guess what I'm really looking for is 'easy to turn in'. I really have to haul to turn in the Mirages.


I went from Mirage to Gold Seal and felt like the blades did the turns for me...

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #7 on: January 14, 2012, 08:25:38 PM »
I went from Coronation Aces to Ultima Finesse, a synchro blade.  I was scared of the shorter tail at first, but I'm almost over it now.  I haven't even come close to falling off it, and mohawks are less scary since it's impossible to step on the blade with the short tail (have done that in the Cor Aces - OUCH!)  I'm just starting to get my forward power pulls back.  The Finesses have an 8' rocker, which hasn't made a big difference for me, that I know of.  The really good thing, is that I hit the turn spot on my F threes with no problem at all, whereas it was always an issue with the Cor Aces.  I've always been chicken with back threes, but my two footed ones are great on the Finesse blades, as they were on the Cor Aces.  When I've got my core strength back to normal, I'll try some on one foot.
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Offline fsk8r

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2012, 03:30:52 AM »
I have Ultima Synchro and Ultima Legacy. The toe pick is just as big on the synchro blades. They're designed to do axels and flying camels in so they need the toe pick and I know people have managed low level doubles in them. It toe pick avoidance is in order, I wouldn't be going towards synchro blades.

My sister had Coronation Dance blades at one point and their toe pick is just as big as the Aces. It's just shorter at the back. (Incidentally Synchro blades I've heard one person say are shorter than dance blades, but I think they are actually comparable these days).

I think if you're after something which makes it easier to turn in, you want something with a good spin rocker as that is where the turns happen. However as your mirages are now reaching the end of their life, they may just have been flattened so much that it's difficult to turn on them. When I just upgraded my blades to a new set of the same my turns improved because I'd got to used to turning on the flat blade. So you might solve problems with having a new pair of Mirages.
I'm not sure how much money the Mirages are (my sister thinks she paid about $50 a few years back), but it's less money to waste on an experiment than if you get Aces or another higher level blade and detest the picks. Then again, as I move up blades the picks always look scary and I've never had a problem falling over them or scraping them. Others do, so it's hard to tell in advance whether you will have a problem.

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #9 on: January 15, 2012, 05:15:23 AM »
I'm not really interested in a dance blade. That stubby tail makes me nervous, and anyway, I'm not at that level.
Having seen how short the heels are on husband's new dance blades (Super Dance 99), I'm completely with you on that one. They do, however, have a much smaller toe pick than the Coronation Aces.

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2012, 02:40:58 PM »
(Incidentally Synchro blades I've heard one person say are shorter than dance blades, but I think they are actually comparable these days).

There were some at one point that were shorter - I think it may have been the wilson team precision which are not made any more but even those were modified to fix that at some point during their production - it was pretty much the early ones that were shorter than dance blades.

Offline icedancer

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #11 on: January 16, 2012, 03:21:09 PM »
Having seen how short the heels are on husband's new dance blades (Super Dance 99), I'm completely with you on that one. They do, however, have a much smaller toe pick than the Coronation Aces.

I've had several dance blades and although I really liked the run and the toepicks on the SuperDance 99 they are definitely shorter than the MKs.

I wish Wilson still made the Wilson Dance - nice blade, very slightly narrower than a FS blade but had good picks (for doing small jumps and hops) - LOVED that blade for dance.

I am thinking of getting the Ultima Synchro - I think it is longer than a dance blade (my current MKs are just plain unstable IMHO) - and I hate the picks (I don't see how ANYONE can do anything with them) - and it is certainly a good price.

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Offline Query

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #12 on: January 16, 2012, 03:38:03 PM »
FWIIW, The Ultima Synchro runners that were available for the now-outdated Ultima Matrix 1 chassis had shorter tails than the Ultima Dance runners available for same. (I've got both, and compared them.)

I don't know what applies to the current Ultima Matrix 2 line, or to the non-Matrix Ultima line. And there is no reason to assume that what applies to Ultima applies to anyone else.

I still wish someone around here rented high end blades, so we could try them all. How can we tell what works well for you without trying them out? Everyone has different anatomy, range of motion, and patterns of habitual motion.

Offline icedancer

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #13 on: January 16, 2012, 03:49:21 PM »
FWIIW, The Ultima Synchro runners that were available for the now-outdated Ultima Matrix 1 chassis had shorter tails than the Ultima Dance runners available for same. (I've got both, and compared them.)

I don't know what applies to the current Ultima Matrix 2 line, or to the non-Matrix Ultima line. And there is no reason to assume that what applies to Ultima applies to anyone else.

I still wish someone around here rented high end blades, so we could try them all. How can we tell what works well for you without trying them out? Everyone has different anatomy, range of motion, and patterns of habitual motion.

  Good info.  And yes it is hard to say whether the blades are longer/shorter/skatable, etc., until you actually take them out of the box and skate in them.

I am pretty convinced that my current MKs just do not work on my boots, for my feet., etc. 

It probably isn't the blade.  It is probably me (oh well).

And yes I wish we could try them out first.  I did send my Super Dance 99 to a guy in Virginia and he tried them out.  He did not like them and sent them back, paid for all the postage.  I am looking for something like that to happen again - this time for me!

Anyone have a set of decent blades (any style) size 10 1/4 that they would be willing to let me try?  I will pay all postage.

I have been looking on ebay for used blades for years - hardly ever find any in my size...
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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #14 on: January 16, 2012, 04:54:31 PM »
My glass is half full :)

Offline aussieskater

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #15 on: January 17, 2012, 12:09:06 AM »
I am thinking of getting the Ultima Synchro - I think it is longer than a dance blade (my current MKs are just plain unstable IMHO) - and I hate the picks (I don't see how ANYONE can do anything with them) - and it is certainly a good price.

The Ultima Synchro blades are indeed a bit longer than dance blades of the same nominal length.  When DH got new boots he had the Ultima Synchro blades mounted.  If you place the furthest back part of the actual boot (I mean the black/white bit, not the heel) against a doorway, the blades protrude about 8mm behind the boot.  For comparison, my MK Pros protrude about 15mm.

When DH was still skating, he took some nasty backwards falls on those blades, and said he'd have taken many more if he'd gone the full dance blade (which is the same length as the boot at back, so about 8mm shorter still).  And he and Coach wondered why I was sticking to my MK Pros!!!  He liked the blades though (he was using them for low level single jumps and spins, and pre-bronze dance).

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #16 on: January 17, 2012, 04:13:49 AM »
I've had several dance blades and although I really liked the run and the toepicks on the SuperDance 99 they are definitely shorter than the MKs.
That doesn't surprise me. Out of curiousity I was comparing the various dance blades on the MK and Wilson website and it looks like there's an actual progression:

Coronation Dance look like the 'bridging' dance blade between freestyle and full dance blade. They have a shorter heel and a 7' rocker, but don't have the side honing that makes other dance blades slimmer at the bottom. Based on the magnified pictures, the toe pick doesn't seem all that different to the Coronation Ace.

MK Dance do have the side honing, shorter heel and slightly smaller pick (compared to MK Pro). They have a 7' rocker.

Superdance 99 look like the more advanced dance blade - side honing, really short heel, much smaller pick, plus an 8' rocker.


I'm not in the market for new blades (would be silly to change from freestyle blades as I only do low level dances), but I was interested to find out about the different types.

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #17 on: January 17, 2012, 03:05:24 PM »
MK Dance do have the side honing

What is your source for this? MK's site www.mkblades.com only lists the Gold Seal, Phantom and Phantom special as side honed (by which they probably mean vertically side honed).

Some of the other blades (not MK Dance) are listed as tapered, and all but Double Star are available parabolic, which are types of side honing.

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #18 on: January 17, 2012, 03:10:23 PM »
Anyone have a set of decent blades (any style) size 10 1/4 that they would be willing to let me try?  I will pay all postage.

I could probably be convinced to lend my pair of Ultima Elites, used for a little over a year (iirc) of 1-4 hours/week skating.

Offline icedancer

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #19 on: January 17, 2012, 03:18:04 PM »
That doesn't surprise me. Out of curiousity I was comparing the various dance blades on the MK and Wilson website and it looks like there's an actual progression:

Coronation Dance look like the 'bridging' dance blade between freestyle and full dance blade. They have a shorter heel and a 7' rocker, but don't have the side honing that makes other dance blades slimmer at the bottom. Based on the magnified pictures, the toe pick doesn't seem all that different to the Coronation Ace.

MK Dance do have the side honing, shorter heel and slightly smaller pick (compared to MK Pro). They have a 7' rocker.

Superdance 99 look like the more advanced dance blade - side honing, really short heel, much smaller pick, plus an 8' rocker.


I'm not in the market for new blades (would be silly to change from freestyle blades as I only do low level dances), but I was interested to find out about the different types.

The picks on the MK Dance may look bigger than the SuperDance 99 but trust me, they be bigger but they are all blunted - the top pick is non-existent and the middle picks are all blunted on the sides as is the bottom pick. 

I could jump (Waltz jump type jumps) in the SueprDance 99 but NO WAY in the MK Dance.

Not sure about the side-honing - I think the MK Dance are not side-honed but they are slimmer.
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Offline AgnesNitt

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #20 on: January 17, 2012, 06:47:07 PM »
So far the Gold Seals looked nice, until I saw the price tag. For that price they'd better not only turn better, but dry themselves off and carry my bags to the rink!
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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #21 on: January 17, 2012, 08:40:29 PM »
Mine came on used boots...$50 total. There is a reason I no longer skate in Gold Seals, and it looks like you figured it out!  Plus, I like pink blades :)

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #22 on: January 17, 2012, 08:55:09 PM »
What length blades do you need, Agnes?  Both my niece and I skated on Gold Seals, so I have several pair in my Skating Chest of Horrors.  They really are big blades, though - the stanchions are high and the rocker is pretty prominent.  They do have a nice long tail, but that might not be great for ice dance, although I know plenty of coaches who no longer change skates before switching from freestyle to dance lessons.
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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #23 on: January 19, 2012, 05:14:13 AM »
What is your source for this? MK's site www.mkblades.com only lists the Gold Seal, Phantom and Phantom special as side honed (by which they probably mean vertically side honed).

Some of the other blades (not MK Dance) are listed as tapered, and all but Double Star are available parabolic, which are types of side honing.
Sorry, as IceDancer2 pointed out, I should have more correctly said 'slimline'. Both MK Dance and SuperDance 99 are listed as 'slimline' whereas Coronation Dance is listed as parallel, like the 'regular' figure skating blades. Also, I've seen people's MK Dance blades and they do have the 'thinner bit' at the bottom of the blade.

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Re: Suggestions for freestyle blades for dance
« Reply #24 on: January 19, 2012, 07:34:05 AM »
That thinner bit makes them "slimline". By default MK Dance blades are slimline and parallel, but can be ordered parabolic instead of parallel.

Agnes, why do you assume Gold Seals are easy to turn? They've an 8' rocker which should be somewhat hard to turn. They seem the opposite of Dance blades. They certainly have freestyle toe picks.

My expert doesn't think that tapering, parabolic honing, or other forms of side honing make a noticeable difference to the way people skate, but sells people whatever they ask for.