How Should Hockey Skates Fit? | Helpful Guide and 3 Top Brands

Hockey skates should be fitted to your feet for proper performance. Many factors affect the size of a skate, but they must fit properly so you can play with ease and accuracy. If you wear out your hockey skates quickly, this might be because your shoe does not provide enough support or stability.

The key is to find a balance between comfort and performance when shopping for new pair of hockey skates. The following article will discuss how should hockey skates fit, how sizing works and what type of skate would work best for each player’s needs!

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Why is getting the right hockey skate fit important?

Hockey skates are designed to mold to the shape of your feet, so you do not need to worry about breaking in new pair of skates. Hockey players should feel comfortable in their skates and not experience any pain when they play. If your hockey skates fit properly, you will experience added comfort, which allows you to focus more on playing well!

A proper skate fit is important for both junior and pro hockey players. Junior hockey players can quickly grow out of poorly fitting or uncomfortable shoes, especially if they are beginning to play the game.

Having the right-sized skate means that your ankles, knees, and hips will be able to move freely during gameplay without discomfort or injury!

In the same sense, professional hockey players need a snug fit in their skates to perform well during games. It can be dangerous for professional players to have loose-fitting hockey skates because the chance of injury increases when they are not snug on their feet. The essential Hockey equipment is designed specifically for each player’s needs, so you need to find a good fit if you are serious about your game!

A skater on the ice showing how should hockey skates fit

Hockey Skate Size vs. Shoe Size

Many people assume that their hockey skate size will be the same as their shoe size. However, there is a difference between your actual shoe size and what you should purchase for skates! Not all skates are sized the same from different brands.

A hockey skate is typically 1-2 sizes lower than the shoe size you wear. However, there are differences among different manufacturers and brands of skates, so people need to know their correct sizing. It’s recommended to shop for hockey skates at a specialized sporting goods store where employees can assess your skate size.

People with narrow feet should opt for a tighter fit when buying their hockey skates since they will have more control over the blade and where it is going. Conversely, hockey players with wide feet should find a tight-fitting skate to support their ankles, knees, and hips properly!

Here’s a hockey skates size chart of Bauer that will be useful for you.

Skate Size To Shoe Size Conversion Online Store
Images courtesy of Dick’s Sporting Goods

What are the different skate sizes and fits?

There are many different skate sizes and fits that hockey players have to choose from. Most brands will have a standard boot size that fits most people’s feet, but each manufacturer varies!

Most manufacturers rate their hockey skate sizes like regular, narrow, wide, and extra-wide sizing. It is important to know your left foot width measurement so you can find the best fit for your needs!

Wear skate socks so you won’t get the marks or stretch on your ankle.

In addition to common sizing options, many specialty stores like Bauer Hockey offer custom-fitted skates that will mold perfectly to your foot for comfort and performance.

If you do not know which size and fit would work best for you, it is best to find a specialist and get your feet measured before making any purchases!

What to look for when trying on ice skates?

The right hockey skate fit can be achieved by ensuring comfortable in both the toe box and the heel. Hockey players with “tighter” feet should look for skates with less wiggle room in the toes to give them more control over their blades on the ice.

On the other hand, hockey players with “looser” feet should look for skates with extra space in the toe cap so they do not experience discomfort during gameplay!

You also need to make sure your ankles, knees, and hips feel comfortable inside of your new skates!

A proper skate fit means having enough stability to keep your ankle from rolling when you land on uneven terrain. You may want to practice standing up (without using your hands or other body parts for support) while you are trying on hockey skates to see if they provide good ankle support during gameplay!

The right fit for hockey skates will ensure that your feet feel comfortable and supported without feeling too tight or loose. You should be able to wiggle your toes inside the toe cap to see if it provides enough room for comfort, but you shouldn’t have any extra space in either direction. If you feel like there is too much toe room, try on another pair of ice skates!

How to Test if your Skates fit Properly?

There are some methods that you can use to test if your skates fit properly, and you can do them at home:

  • The finger test – Place your index and middle fingers behind the heel of the skate (while you are wearing them). If there is about an inch between your fingers and the back of the boot, then it’s a good fit! (If there isn’t much room, then you might need to go down a half size in skates).
  • The lace test – Lace your skates, so they are as tight as possible without being uncomfortable. If you have a good level of ankle flexion, then the skates fit properly! You should be able to push up or down on the tongue of the boot with your hands, but you shouldn’t be able to slide it back and forth easily.
  • The knuckle test – When you’re wearing your skates, bend at the knees and check for any spare room in front of or behind your ankles. This can cause serious stability problems during gameplay! It would be best if you only had a couple of centimeters worth of space between the boot and your ankles when standing straight up from a bent-over position.

Look for the proper fit in all the movements that you do so you can be sure that your skates are providing the best possible support during gameplay!

How do you know if your hockey skates are too big?

If your skates are too big, you might have to deal with the heel repeatedly slipping up and down as you skate, causing extra work for your ankles. You could also experience discomfort during gameplay if the tongue of the ice skates is not strong enough to counterbalance your foot!

You can know if your hockey skates are too big if you can wiggle your toes inside of the toe box even when the skates are laced up as tight as possible. Likewise, you should not be able to move your feet around too much inside your ice skates, especially if they are on the right size!

Also, make sure that your ankles feel secure and stable in your hockey skates! If you have excess space on either side of your ankles, then it might be time to go down a half size for more stability during gameplay.

You can also use methods like the finger test or lace test to ensure that you have properly-sized ice skates before making any purchases!

3 Top Brands of Ice Hockey Skate Brands

There are various brands of ice hockey skates that you can purchase, but they are not all created equal! They all claim that they are the best, but all of them provide almost the same things with some differences in materials and sizes.

Here are some best brands of Ice Hockey skates that you can purchase:


A pair of Bauer Supreme 3S Pro
hockey skates

Bauer skates are a great choice for hockey players of all levels! Bauer skates come in various styles and colors so that you can find the right ice hockey skates fit for your gameplay. In addition, you can choose from top-of-the-line ice hockey skates as well as lower-level boots to suit your style on the rink!

Best selling ice hockey skates by Bauer:

  • Bauer Supreme 3S Pro
  • Bauer Vapor 2X Pro
  • Bauer Supreme 3S


A pair of CCM Super Tacks AS3 hockey skates

CCM ice skates are another popular choice for players at all levels! CCM has a large selection of hockey skates that are great for beginners to pros, so you really cannot go wrong with your purchase.

CCM skates have been around since 1899, so they know what it takes to make high-quality ice hockey equipment. If you’re looking for an affordable way to upgrade your gear, then CCM will provide exactly what you need!

Best selling ice hockey skates by CCM:

  • CCM JetSpeed FT470
  • CCM Super Tacks AS3
  • CCM Ribcor 80K


A pair of Graf G755 Pro hockey skates

Graf is a great option for players looking to get high-quality equipment at an affordable price. In addition, Graf has been around since 1921, so they know what ice hockey skates should fit like!

Graf ice skates come in a wide variety of colors and styles, so there is something for every player’s needs. In addition, this brand offers both beginner and pro-level hockey equipment, allowing you to be able to upgrade your gear without having to break the bank!

Best selling ice hockey skates by Graf:

  • Graf G755 Pro
  • Graf PK5900 Senior
  • Graf PK7900 Senior

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Are skates supposed to be tight?

Skates should be snug on your feet when laced up properly. They shouldn’t be so tight that you have trouble, but they also shouldn’t feel uncomfortably loose either!

How much room should I have in my hockey skates?

It would be best if you only had a couple of centimeters worth of space between your ankles and the boot when standing straight up from a bent-over position.

Should I buy hockey skates a size bigger?

No! If you buy hockey skates too big for your feet, the boots will not provide proper support and could be painful during gameplay.

Are ice skates the same size as shoes?

Ice skates are sized differently than shoes, so it’s always best to try them on before you make your purchase!

How do I know if my ice skates are too small?

If you can’t tighten up your hockey skates as much as possible without them cutting off your circulation, then they are probably too small. Your ankles should also feel secure and stable in the boots when you lace them up properly!

How tight should ice skates be laced?

Ice skates should be tightened as much as possible, just not to the point where you can’t feel your toes or air starts getting cut off. Your ankles and feet should feel locked in and secure while wearing them.

Why does the bottom of my feet hurt when I skate?

If your skates are too big, then you will end up walking not properly on the blades. This will cause pain due to the excess pressure put on the bottom of your feet!

How do I stop my feet from hurting when skating?

Getting properly fitted equipment is the best way to ensure that your feet do not hurt during gameplay! Also, make sure your skates are laced up correctly and tight enough so that they do not slip off when you walk!

How long will it take for my skates to break in?

It can take a couple of games or even practice or two for your skates to break in. It all depends on how stiff the boots are when you first purchase them. If they are very stiff, then it may take longer for them to break in. If they are already broken in, then it won’t take nearly as long.

How Should Hockey Skates Fit? – Conclusion

Essentially, you should go to your local store to try and skates on before you purchase. Hockey skates should be snug on your feet when you lace them up properly. Likewise, your ankles should feel secure and stable in the boots, but they shouldn’t be so tight that you can’t feel your toes or breathe.

I hope you have found a few tips and ideas in this guide to help you when you are trying on skates. Would you like to share any of your experiences with choosing perfect-fit hockey skates? Then, do let us know in the comments below.

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