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Skate FAQs: About the FAQ

The Origins of Skate FAQs

I first signed on to alt.skate way back in 1991 while attending Princeton. I was researching which skate to buy for my very first pair. I compiled all the useful posts into one big file so that I could sift through the comments and reviews. I eventually bought the Aeroblades, the best skate I could find at that time.

Alt.skate then became rec.skate, and the creation of the FAQ was inspired by the two most frequently asked questions of that day: stopping and how to maintain wheels and bearings. The Stopping and Wheel and Bearings files, along with the list of trails I was compiling made up the original FAQ. This quickly grew to include a general Q&A file, a huge list of trails and places to skate, rollerhockey info, skate reviews and the FAQ was on a roll.

Today the FAQ is one of the most popular and comprehensive inline skating resources both on and off the Web. It has everything from skating tutorials, lists of shops and manufacturers, information from dozens of skating clubs, the Inline Skate Shopping Guide, and much more.

In any case, I hope this FAQ is useful in some way to any and all skaters out there. As the sport of inline skating continues to grow and mature, parts of this FAQ will likely fall out of date. So if there's something wrong or missing in the FAQ, please send in your comments and corrections.

Skate smart and skate safe.

-Tony Chen


Although it may seem like the FAQ is all my doing, it isn't. Many folks have helped make the FAQ what it is today. These people deserve some recognition, so here they are:
Robert Schmunk (
The most thanks goes to Robert Schmunk (creator and maintainer of the Skating on the Infobahn site). He volunteered to clean up the where-to-skate sections when it was still a big mess. He's also big into slalom skating, and you can read about his slalom advice and moves in the Slalom section. He has been quick to provide feedback on layout and organization, and the FAQ has benefitted greatly from his advice. Thanks Robert!

George Robbins (
George was one of the original "old-timers" from the alt.skate days. He currently manages the Roller/quad skating FAQ as well as the skating book FAQ. Throughout much of the early days of this FAQ, George constantly sent in in snippets of material (aka "FAQ meat") for inclusion in the FAQ. George helped write chunks of the General Q&A, made a ton of good suggestions for the Wheels/Bearings files, as well as many other sections I'm sure I've forgotten about. Thanks George!

Amy Ryan (
Amy used to maintain the UIUC Blades site (which apparenty is now defunct? since her graduation). Amy's main contribution has been the nice FAQ on small/kids skates in section 3.3. Thanks Amy!

Jennifer Kretschmer (
Jennifer has helped the FAQ cover some material that's long since been neglected, namely figure skating on inlines. It wasn't until recently though that she stepped in to help fill the void. Her growing list of skating moves is shown in section 2.5. Thanks Jennifer!

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