So many skates, so many decisions. It’s understandable to be overwhelmed by how many choices you have when it comes to picking a new skate, especially when you may want to try something new but you don’t know how the fit will compare to your old skates. That’s what I’m here for. I’m going to break down the fit of each skate line from every company (with my own opinion mixed in) so you can expect what a particular skate is going to feel like when you put it on for the first time. These skate companies carry the same fit from their top-of-the-line skates all the way down to their entry level skates so everyone gets the same feeling top to bottom. While companies do have a “style-of-play” per each family, ALWAYS get the best fitting skate over the style-of-play description. You can have the best, most expensive skate on the market but if it fits improperly, it’s worthless to you!
Bauer hockey skates are broken down into three families: Vapor, Supreme and Nexus. Each one is designed for a specific type of player as well as their foot shape.
Vapor: Looking closer at the Vapor line, you’ll feel more of a leaned over, aggressive stance that is geared towards the quick and crafty players who skate hard and need to change direction quickly. The Vapor is considered to have a tapered fit, meaning it has a narrow, V-fit in the heel for excellent heel lock.
Supreme: The Supreme lineup is based around explosive power; geared for top-end, coast-to-coast speed. The boot is going to feel more anatomical, so it will feel like a 360º wrap around your foot for the best responsiveness. The overall volume is medium-high volume, so it will be slightly larger in some areas than the Vapor series, but you will still get a close, medium volume in the heel, across the forefoot and toebox.
Nexus: Last but not least we have the Nexus series, which will be the most traditional fitting skate of the Bauer skates. This skate is constructed for overall power and will have the highest volume of any Bauer skate, but with a narrow heel, medium-high forefoot and toe box.
This is one of the oldest companies in the game, supplying skates for thousands of hockey players throughout the entire 20th century. CCM now has two skate lines, the RBZ line and the Tacks line, their most recent release and probably one of the oldest skate lines on the market to date.
RBZ: With the RBZ, you will get the more upright, traditional stance compared to the Tacks that have an aggressive stance. Looking closer at the RBZ, this has a very similar fit to the Bauer Nexus line, meaning it has a deep ankle pocket with a wide forefoot and a high instep. These skates feel great out of the box and are heat moldable so the fit can only improve.
Tacks:The iconic Tacks skates are what everyone is raving about, providing a design that will give you the 5 fastest steps in hockey for unreal acceleration. In my opinion they have one of the best out-of-the-box feel on the market. These skates are going to have a medium-high volume throughout the entire skate, so they will be very similar to the Bauer Supreme fit, but only slightly bigger.
Reebok hockey skates have become a very popular fit on the market, one that is known for providing great agility and power. Reebok features their one skate line, the RibCor. Compared to the CCM Tacks and RBZ, these have the most narrow profile and are ideal for the crafty player that needs to change directions quickly. When you try these skates on, they have a great out-of-the-box feel and are favored for their comfort over a lot of skates while still providing excellent performance from top to bottom.
Last but certainly not least, we have the Easton Mako skate line. I will say when you slide these skates on, they certainly don’t feel the best, but when you bake them, they have the best full foot wrap and become one of the most comfortable and responsive skates on the market. These definitely have a low-medium volume throughout the entire boot, similar to the Vapor and RibCor series. Just because the Mako II and Mako 8 do have a low volume fit, they are excellent at heat molding which allow players with wide feet to get a comfortable fit out of these too. With the Extendon™ tendon guard, you can get a full stride extension and get the most power out of each stride.
Hopefully this will make things much easier when you’re picking out your next skate because if you can get the best fit possible from a skate, you’ll be able to take advantage of what it has offer, resulting in greater performance. For in-depth looks at each skate model within these product lines, be sure to check out Inline and Ice Warehouse for the best experience!