The first time we ever saw a hockey skating treadmill was on an evening news show where they were showing highlights of an athlete gliding back and forth on a smooth ice-like surface. Little did we know at the time that it was actually a revolutionary invention also known as a Blade Skating Treadmill.
Unlike a walking/running treadmill, The Blade hockey treadmill is large enough for a user to skate and work on lateral striding movements, including crossovers, while the surface moves under them just like the belt on a treadmill. Like the full line of Woodway treadmills produced by the company, they are so valuable that they are now used in elite sports training facilities all over the world.
The Blade hockey skating treadmill offers a 4 ft x 8 ft sheet of “practice ice,” and can run up to 20 mph forward and 5 mph in reverse. It offers a negative incline of 5% and a positive incline up to 35%. It operates with 316 ball bearings for friction-less operation. The slick surface is comprised of plastic components which are assembled in individual polythylene slats making the experience for the user Zamboni smooth, with none of the cracks, ruts, or divots that can be found on real ice.
The skating and hockey treadmill is also equipped with a Gantry 4-post system, and each skater is attached to an overhead harness to lessen any chance of accident or injury. That safety feature makes it ideal for beginners.
You’ll find a lot of intermediate and pro skaters using it to perfect their skills, which they work on while skating in front of a full-length mirror analyzing their footwork. The treadmill doesn’t require special equipment for users since they can wear their own skates.
Due to the hefty price, purchasers of the hockey skating treadmill are teams, clubs and rinks which can offer athletes an off-ice training program where they can work on fundamentals, skating mechanics, acceleration, and endurance with a coach who can observe them closely from two feet away.
The skater can also work on their puck passing and stick handling skills— all while skating at full speed and remaining in one spot.