I’ve heard it all when it comes to skating on synthetic ice. I’ve heard that you can’t move, or turn or stop or pivot. Recently one goalie coach who trained players on synthetic ice insisted that you could not skate backwards on it. Wow was he ever surprised when he tested our product and saw how easy it was to move backwards and pivot and transition.
This is just another example of the mis-information that is out there about synthetic ice material. That is not to say there is not poor products being sold out there, there certainly is! And maybe that is a large part of the problem. Maybe that is why the industry still feels like it’s mired back in 1980 when there was nothing but poor products. That is why SmartRink is so dedicated to educating potential buyers about the differences in synthetic ice skating material. That is why we can safely and confidently say that skating on synthetic ice is easy.
So how can a buyer try to distinguish between a good quality product, a poor quality product, and an exceptional quality product. It starts with the raw material and how that rw materal is manufactured into a synthetic ice sheet.
SmartRink products are sinter pressed sheets. Sintering the sheet makes all the difference. Recently in a head to head trial of our product verses a leading brand of extruded product the overwhelming consensus of the comparison for skating performance was that our product delivered a superior skate. The glide was superior and more realistic. To be fair some skaters preferred the stopping action of the extruded sheet material, probably because the resistance of the product was greater than ours – but that is just speculation. One very noticeable difference was the amount of material residue that was displaced from skating on our competitors panels. It was incredible actually to see the difference first hand. Stopping on their product produced a handful of white dusty powdery residue, whereas stopping on the SmartRink material resulted in producing only a fingertip worth of fibre like material, you could hardly even see it.
So in a nutshell why is our product easier to skate on? Our panels are SINTER pressed. This is a process of applying great pressure under both high temperature and lower temperature conditions. This not only deivers better skating performance but allows us to offer a product that is incredibly abrasion resistant – meaning it will last much longer than an extruded material.
At SmartRink we say that skating on synthetic ice is easy. Really we should be saying that skating on SmartRink synthetic ice is easy!