Finding the best ice skates for hockey is important to every player. It doesn’t matter if you’re a pro or a beginner skater – the right hockey skate can make a world of difference every time you step on the ice.
Whether you’re looking for the right skate to take your game to the next level, or you need a pair for pick-up games on weekends, our guide will give you an overview of the top 10 best ice skates for hockey available today.
Best Hockey Skates for 2020-21
The best ice skates for hockey will vary for each player, depending on factors such as skill level, playing style, how long you’ve skated, how often you skate and of course how much you want to spend. Skates have different features, and you may find a skate lower on our list suits your skillset better than our top pick, and that’s ok. The skate that works best for you is one that provides the comfort and performance tailored to your game. We based our top 10 list by evaluating things like comfort, fit, style and price point.
The Vapor 2X Pro Hockey Skates are Bauer’s quickest skates to date and offer top-of-the-line performance every time you step onto the ice.
Headlining the technology, is the new Dynaflex System. This design allows for a little bit of flex within the boot, allowing it to better conform to the natural shape of your foot. This helps improve energy transfer along with comfort.
Enhancing comfort and flexibility on the Vapor 2X Pro Skates is the new Recoil Pro Dual Injected tongue. This redesigned tongue provides players with improved forward flex, which translates to more range of motion during skating strides!
- Dynaflex System
- Recoil Pro Dual Injected Tongue
- 3-D lasted Carbon Curve outsole: Comfortable, lightweight, close-to-the-foot fit. Incredibly lightweight and protective
- Lock-Fit Pro liner: Interior lining designed to keep feet dry and comfortable
- Aerofoam Pro Foam Memory Pads: Interior padding within the ankles of the boot that are incredibly responsive to heat-molding, helping lock the foot into place for unmatched comfort and control
The new CCM JetSpeed FT2 Hockey Skates build upon their successful predecessor by incorporating new features that help take this current iteration to the next leve
Like the FT1’s, the FT2 Hockey Skates feature CCM’s popular one-piece quarter package, now taking the name LiteFrame 360 EVO Technology. This means no outsole, no stitching, and no glue in any of the high-energy transfer zones. The result is a tapered, 360-degree fit, providing superior energy transfer for explosive speed and power in every stride.
Another new feature that has been incorporated into the FT2 Hockey Skates is the Metamonic Tongue. This new design features an asymmetrical flex point that fully wraps around your foot, enhancing fit, feel, and forward flex.
Leave the competition behind with the CCM JetSpeed FT2 Hockey Skates!
- LiteFrame 360 EVO quarter package
- Metamonic Tongue
- TotalDri Pro Liner: Interior lining designed to keep feet dry and comfortable
- SpeedBlade XS Holder: New holder that features a positive-lock dial that can be used to replace runners on the fly
Graf hockey skates have been tried-and-true hockey skates since the 1920’s and the Graf G755 Ice Hockey Skates are no different. Constructed with a 4K composite outsole, and a multi-density liner, these skates are comfortable, durable, and protective. The Graf G755 Pro Ice Hockey Skates also feature a 2-piece heat moldable microfiber quarter panel, meaning players have the ability to generate more power with each stride.
- Traditionally stitched heat-moldable quarter panel
- Cobra 2.0 stainless steel runners with 10-foot radius
- Multi-density interior liner that locks heel into place
Bauer produces some of the best ice skates for hockey, and the Supreme 2S Pro Hockey Skates are no exception!
These skates are the flagship model within the Supreme skate line, and rightfully so. The Supreme 2S Pro Skates feature some awesome enhancements in terms of technology, and between the durability and stability you get from the quarter package, they’ll excite even the most elite-level players!
With carbon composite quarter package is both lightweight and strong, the Reflex Pro tongue, and the Lock Fit Liner, the Supreme 2S Pro Hockey Skates will not disappoint.
- Curve Composite Quarter Package: Outer layer of the skate that is more responsive to heat molding, giving players unmatched fit and comfort; Along with improved protection and weight reduction, compared to its predecessor
- Reflex Pro Tongue: 3-piece, 52-ounce tongues built with heat-moldable inserts for improved protection and flexibility
- Lock Fit Pro Liner: Interior lining designed to keep feet dry and comfortable
- Speed Plate 2.0 Footbed: Heat-moldable footbed designed to mold to the shape of your foot, eliminating any negative space and increasing energy transfer
When Reebok transitioned away from manufacturing hockey skates, CCM stepped up to continue their incredibly popular RibCor skate line. CCM’s new RibCor 80K Hockey Skates improve upon what were already an elite-level skate with the 70K’s.
The redesigned quarter package on the 80K skates features a 3-D carbon fiber quarter package, allowing for flex within the boot to increase forward flex and lateral stability. This translates to improved power and efficiency within every skating stride.
Another new feature incorporated into the RibCor 80k Hockey Skates is CCM’s new SpeedBlade XS holder! This new design utilizes a positive-lock dial on the end of each holder. This will tightly secure the blade to the holder and will allow players to quickly swap out skate blades if one were to break mid-game.
- 3-D lasted quarter package
- TriTech Pro Tongue: three-layered, 7mm felt tongue, providing great comfort and protection against blocked shots and stick checks
- TotalDri Pro+ Liner: Interior lining designed to keep feet dry and comfortable
- SpeedBlade XS Holders
The Bauer Vapor 2X Hockey Skates deliver top-of-the-line performance at a competitive price point.
Starting with the built, the Vapor 2X Hockey Skates utilize Bauer’s new Accuflex System. This design provides a little bit of flex within the boot, rather than ultra-stiff, allowing it to better conform to the natural shape of your foot. The result is improved comfort and performance!
Furthering the lightweight and responsive qualities is the 3-D lasted Carbon Curve material on the outsole of the skate. This is a protective and durable outside layer that helps keep players quick on their feet without having to sacrificing high-end protection.
- Acceflex System
- Recoil tongue: Improved flex and range of motion for more powerful skating strides
- 3-D lasted Carbon Curve outsole
- Lock-Fit liner: Interior lining designed to keep feet dry and comfortable
- Aerofoam+ Memory Foam Padding: Interior padding within the ankles of the boot that are incredibly responsive to heat-molding, helping lock the foot into place for great comfort and control
CCM Hockey is constantly pushing the boundaries when it comes to ice hockey skate innovation and this time is no different with the Super Tacks 9370 hockey skates! Designed and manufactured to cater to a wide range of players, the Super Tacks 9370 Skates offer the complete package of performance, comfort, and efficiency.
The Super Tacks 9370 Skate features the same tried and true anatomical fit that players are accustomed to with the Super Tacks line. This form-fitting, 360-degree fit around the forefoot, heel, and ankle helps eliminate negative space within the boot, allowing for more efficient energy transfer meaning improved speed and agility
CCM’s Metaframe Technology provides a superior fit for your foot. This will take the players mind off of the skate so they can fully focus on the game and trust their skates to perform the way they need it. The HD Microfiber liner with Durazone Abrasion Protection is an elite-performance moisture-wicking material that helps wick moisture away from the body, keeping them dry and light on their feet.
- Metaframe Technology with Synthetic composite quarter package
- Asymmetrical dual-density 7mm felt replaceable tongue embossed lace-bite protection
- HD Microfiber liner with Durazone Abrasion Protection
- SpeedBlade XS holder tightly secures the runners to the holder to prevent the blade from loosening
The True TF9 Ice Hockey Skates are a culmination of thousands of foot scans and hundreds of hours of development to get as close to a custom skate fit as possible, in a stock skate. TRUESHELL tech provides a high level of protection and performance while staying ultra-lightweight.
The adjustable tongue has a stiff and contoured design allowing for a lightweight but anatomical fit for enhanced comfort and the T-Guard insert delivers superior protection against impact while preventing lace bite.
Hydrofoam liner is an antimicrobial, moisture wicking liner to keep your feet dry while providing superior comfort through a multi-density foam construction. The TF9 insole integrates fit inserts to accommodate low, mid, and high arch feet. Placement of the fit inserts are marked on the insole for easy positioning to ensure proper fit regardless of your arch type.
- TRUESHELL tech, True's proprietary co-molded carbon fiber and thermoplastic one-piece shell creates a thermoformed boot
- Antimicrobial, moisture wicking liner keeps your feet dry while providing superior comfort through a multi-density foam construction
- SHIFT holders feature enhanced BenchChange technology allowing for faster blade replacement
- SHIFT Onyx black steel runners enhance the longevity of skate sharpenings and provide a sharper edge
Bauer implemented their 3D Poly Carbon which is a lightweight material designed to be durable and protective for the player to get the most of this skate. Down at the toe, a regular toe design provides protection to the player.
A 30oz, 2 piece Felt tongue with Mesh Metatarsal Guard provides thick protection for the player, increasing comfort and protection across the front of the skate. A microfiber liner is specifically designed to keep players feet dry and comfortable by working to wick away moisture.
Memory foam pads within the ankles of the boot deliver premium thermoformability, great comfort and durability, and an improved fit!
- 3D Poly Carbon is a lightweight material designed to be durable and protective
- 2 piece Felt tongue with Mesh Metatarsal Guard provides thick protection
- Memory foam pads within the ankles of the boot
- TUUK Lightspeed Edge holder than has been tested and played with at elite levels for years
MetaFrame Technology infused quarter package features an ergonomic shape, which hugs the foot all the way around, ensuring that your heel stays locked in place to help generate maximum speed. A 7mm felt tongue with embossed Lace-bite Protection provides ultimate protection and comfort.
CCM’s HD Microfiber liner material helps wick away any moisture, helping keep your feet dry and your skates light. DuraZone Abrasion Protection in high-wear areas greatly increases boot durability and comfort.
CCM’s SpeedBlade XS holder features a quick and easy way to replace blades on the fly, while ensuring you with a consistent feel and performance every time. The holders feature a positive-lock mechanism that tightly secures the blade to the holder to prevent the blade from loosening during gameplay. The consistently tightly-secured blade maximizes energy transfer from the boot to the holder and from the holder to the blade in every stride.
- MetaFrame Technology infused quarter package features an ergonomic shape
- 7mm felt tongue with embossed Lace-bite Protection
- HD Microfiber liner wicks away any moisture
- SpeedBlade XS holder tightly secures the runners to the holder to prevent the blade from loosening
Components of a Hockey Skate
Hockey Skate Boots
Hockey skate boots are where your foot sits inside the skate. Think of them as being similar to a shoe – they form around your entire foot.
Holders and Runners
The holders attach blades to the outsole of the hockey boot on the bottom. The runners are the actual blades underneath the holders. You typically want the holder and runner to be two individual parts, which on higher end skates, is always the case.
What Makes Up a Hockey Skate
An ice hockey skate is made up of several different parts, and the way each one is constructed may change the fit, feel and weight of the skate.
Liner: The material inside the boot that provides padding and comfort.
Heel Support : The pocket at the back of the boot which secures your heel and provides stability.
Footbed: The padded insert that covers the bottom of the inside of the boot. Typically is removable and in some cases heat moldable.
Ankle Padding: A pad made from foam or other soft material to provide ankle support.
Tongue: The protective cover under the laces and on top of the front of the foot.
Quarter Package: Essentially, the shell of the boot. It’s crafted to provide flexibility and support for the foot.
Outsole: The hard bottom of the boot. The holder is attached to the outsole.
Considerations When Buying Your Hockey Skates
Keep in mind that just because a skate ranks high on our top 10 list, it does not necessarily mean that it’s the best skate for you. You should consider all the factors that make a skate the perfect fit for your ice hockey experience, including things such as your skill level, playing style and level of experience.
Hockey Skill Level
A player new to the sport may struggle in a stiff skate that’s designed for expert skaters. They should not, however, steer completely clear of rigid skates. An overly flexible skate will not offer the support necessary to learn to skate properly. A highly experienced player will no doubt look for a more aggressive skate that is crafted for high performance abilities.
A beginner or intermediate player may not know enough about their own skating style to purchase an expensive pair of ice hockey skates. An experienced ice hockey player is more likely to try and find a skate that’s nuanced to their skating style, regardless of price.
Hockey is an expensive sport, and sometimes price can be a decisive factor. There are several different price points when it comes to hockey skates, and finding the best skate for your budget is important.
Additional Hockey Resources
Finding the ideal skate is important, and it’s equally imperative to ensure your ice hockey skates fit properly and are comfortable.
How to Size Your Hockey Skates
It’s important to remember that most brands of ice hockey skates will be approximately one full size smaller than standard shoes sizes.
How to Check the Fit of Your Skate
With your foot in the boot of your hockey skate, your toes should just barely reach the end of the toecap, with no more than a quarter inch of space between your heel and the back end of the boot. There are a few methods to check this fit.
Method 1: The Pencil Test
The pencil test is quick and easy, with little room for error. Put on your skate without lacing it up, pull the tongue out and place a pencil across the third or fourth eyelet down. If the pencil rests on the top of your foot without moving, you know you have a good fit.
Method 2: The Squeeze Test
The squeeze test can help check the firmness of your skate. Simply hold the skate from behind the ankle and squeeze with your thumb and index finger. If the skate folds in on itself, it’s way too flexible for a quality skating experience. A little bit of flexibility is good for newer players, but experienced players and power skaters will want a fairly rigid ankle support.
Method 3: The Finger Test
The finger test can be done by first putting your skate on and lacing it properly. Then, lean forward and attempt to slide a finger between the back of the boot and your ankle. If you can slide more than one finger into the skate, your skates are too big. For adults who prefer a snug fit, having less than a one-finger gap may be ok.
Method 4: The Toe Brush Test
The toe brush test is done by putting on and lacing up your skates. Your toes should barely brush the toecap at the front end of the skate.
How to Break in Your Hockey Skates
You should know how to break in your hockey skates. Today, many skates can be thermoformed to your feet, which makes the breaking in process much quicker. This process is also known as skate baking. Check with your local pro shop for assistance, as they’ll have a skate oven designed for this purpose. Whether you purchase skates that can be baked or not, the best way to break-in ice hockey skates is just by using them.
Sharpening Your Skates
Sharpening your skates is necessary with repeated use of ice hockey skates. If you feel your feet slipping during turns or when you’re skating backwards, or if you notice performance issues while speeding up or slowing down, your skates probably need to be sharpened. Your local ice rink or hockey pro shop can perform this service.
Want more information on how to choose the right hockey skates? We put together a Hockey Skate Buying Guide with everything you need to know!