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Wheels Part 3: Hubs

Just when you thought the decision-making process was over...there’s one more element to consider: hubs! Yes, I’m serious, your skate wheels have hubs and you have options, embrace them! The hubs are what holds your urethane together and keeps your bearings inside and doing their jobs. You’ve got a choice of 3 types: spokes/solid core, hollow core, or aluminum.

roller skate wheel hub information

Wheels with a solid core, or a core made of nylon spokes, are a traditional wheel design. They are generally light weight, due to the empty space in between the spokes. The spoke design gives the wheel some “flex” when pushed off of.

roller skate wheel hollow hub information

Hollow core wheels provide the light weight of a solid core, but with more rigidity. This helps ensure that no energy is lost during the push without sacrificing weight.

roller skate wheel aluminum hub information

Aluminum hubs are considered by some to offer the best responsiveness of any wheel hub. The solid aluminum core gives a long roll with no loss of energy. The trade-off with aluminum hubs is that they are usually much heavier than their nylon counterparts (and usually more expensive!)

No particular wheel will magically make you a better skater, but it’s nice to know you have options that can help you optimize your skating performance!