Inline skating was huge in America back in the 1990s, but the craze was short lived. However, there has been a recent revival of rollerblading over these last few years.

Rollerblade USA (rollerblade.com), the brand that first stoked the fire for tens of millions to hop on that short-lived inline-skating trend, have recently revitalized their marketing. Not only is inline skating now 21st century chic, many have also found it quite useful when it comes to keeping in shape for another sport.

According to their website, members of the Rollerblade team have joined forces with the Professional Ski Instructors of America (PSIA), the National Ski Patrol and U.S. Ski and Snowboard to create an app specifically designed to keep skiers in shape and in tune during their off-season. How do they manage to stay in shape, you might ask? The answer is simple: inline skating cross-training.

One of the faces of this insanely popular cross training program is Olympian, ski coach and downhill skier Doug Lewis. Over the last few years, he has used inline skating to help train kids at his ELITEAM race camps, swearing by the program. Lewis, along with other giant figures in downhill and cross country skiing, all can testify that there’s nothing quite like the Skate to Ski cross-training program to keep one in shape while they have downtime in the off season. Not only does inline skating increase one’s agility, build muscle and increase mobility and cardiovascular system strength, but it’s extremely fun!

Sure, inline skates aren’t exactly the same as skis. Skis are built to be a little tougher and are typically more rigid than rollerblading, although the muscle movements are extremely similar. Besides, skis have come a long way over the years. Some of the best skis these days are specifically built for effortless strides and crossovers down a snowy mountain. The skate-to-ski app gives tips and tricks on how to train properly, providing drills that can be performed on inline skates to prepare for the upcoming ski season.

The great part about this program is anyone merely interested in the idea of learning to inline skate can try it out and see if they like it. The program is made available online for all skill levels, from beginner to advanced skater. Before giving it a try, make sure the proper equipment is purchased. Start off by getting a nice pair of rollerblades to go with the proper padding and protection.

These days, there are rollerblades that have been specifically designed with this training program in mind. Rollerblade offers molded boot shells that provide that accuracy and sustenance that skiers are looking for. A pair of these particular skates typically go for a whopping $150 to $350 a pair on the Rollerblade website. For those who are less committed, there are cheaper, alternative rollerblade options online.

Once the skates, gear and helmet are purchased, trainers recommend skaters start out on a flat surface. It’s important to get the basic skating movements down before taking on any sort of decline. This advice applies to even the more advanced skiers. After all, snowy black diamond hills are much different than a straight decline on pure pavement!

A few things to keep in mind when starting off… always be aware of what lies on the road ahead, and make sure to avoid roads with water, sand or cracked pavement. Starting off by skating up a slight incline can also help build that crucial leg strength when it comes to alpine and cross-country skiing. Most of all, have fun!

Rollerblade’s website provides chronological Ski Training System phases to tackle one by one. The website is also chock-full of educational information regarding building muscles, finding and keeping balance, changing lanes, how to perform perfect hourglass and stomp turns, traversing, skating on one skate at a time, and so much more. There are several testimonials from advanced skiers and skaters from all over the world who all swear by the Skate to Ski cross training program, providing a diverse set of advice and knowledge that can be applied to everyone’s individual experience.

In light of the pandemic, Rollerblade recommends not pushing any limits or practicing in large groups of people. Make sure the terrain equates ability, and to keep a pace within skill-level range. With all of the uncertainty, it is impossible to know how winter sports will go this year, but purchasing a pair of rollerblades for the spring season once the weather gets warmer is also a great option to stay in shape and stay occupied.

Inline skating has been deemed the best way to stay in shape during the skiing off season due to the recreation of unique muscle movements required when it comes to skiing. Skiers with all different abilities are learning that incline skating can be beneficial at any skill level.