1. Sports

Freeline Skates Review

About.com Rating 4.5 Star Rating
User Rating 5 Star Rating (3 Reviews)

By

Feeline Skates Review

Feeline Skates Review

Feeline Skates
“Freelines are insane,” is the opening quote that tester Trent gave me after spending a month trying out Freeline Skates. Freelines are basically small metal plates with grip on the top, and two 72 mm longboard wheels underneath. They don’t strap to your feet, and you can’t stand still while standing on them. One per foot, they sort of create a skateboarding effect, except that it’s nothing like skateboarding at all.
When I first saw Freelines, I was skeptical. They looked like a gimmick – something that a small group of weird kids would get into, and then quickly get out of. But, then I got to use them – they’re solidly built, and strangely fun to ride!

Freeline Construction

Freeline skates are built VERY tough. They are tough, sturdy metal, able to withstand 3000 pounds of pressure a piece (I didn't test this personally, but the argument is that cars weigh around this much, so Ryan Farrelly, the inventor, wanted Freelines to be able to be run over and still be OK). The little square metal plates are covered with grip tape and marked for right and left. The 72 mm wheels are a special formula that Ryan developed, for just the right amount of grip vs. slide. The bearings are generic ABEC 5s, which worked out just great.

And that's all there is to these Freeline skates. The relatively simple design is one of the best things about them. There aren't too many moving parts to worry about, and everything is designed to take a great deal of punishment. Freelines are designed to ride hard, and Ryan knew when he built them that people would push the limit in any way they can, so he didn't want the design of the Freelines to hold them back.

Freeline Ridability

Feeline Skates Review

Feeline Skates Review

Feeline Skates
So, just how far can you go on these Freelines? It turns out you can do pretty much whatever you want. They aren't like a skateboard, really, and they aren't like inline skates. Freelines are something different. Something new and unique.

While riding them, you stand in a similar stance to skateboarding, in that you are going to the side. But, that's where the similarity ends. You sort of pump or slide or weave your feet in and out, in order to create momentum. You can't just stand still on Freelines, they are built to move.

When you first get on them, it will take a while to get used to it. Ryan Farrelly said that most people can learn in about a day. Having a torn ACL, I didn’t get much of a chance to ride the Freelines myself, so I gave them over to Trent, my celebrity product tester. I watched Trent work pretty hard to learn to ride them, and we watched the instructional DVD that comes with them. There's another instructional video for Freelines on YouTube that was pretty helpful, too. Honestly, I think if you had Ryan or someone like that helping you, you might feel like you made some progress on the first day, but for Trent and I, it took about a week before we felt like we had done anything. And even then, it took Trent about a month to really get confident. But, like Trent said, they are definitely a challenge, but anything good is worth working for.

The fact that you can step off of Freelines is a huge bonus - it's easier than stepping off of a skateboard. So, it looks like you could get hurt pretty easy, and you can if you want to, but Freelines are just as safe as skateboards. In testing, our only injury was Trent smacking his elbow, and he's fine. Freelines are pretty easy to slow down on, and like I said you can step off of them easily.

Trent wanted to add that Freelines definitely doesn't replace the skateboard. Ryan Farrelly said the same thing when I talked to him - he said that he's not trying to take away from skateboarding at all. He loves skateboarding - all the guys in his company seem to skate, and the last thing they want is for people to think they are trying to replace skateboarding. Freelines are something all together new and different.

One thing I would recommend not trying on your Freelines is taking on big hills. There isn't much you can do to recover if something goes wrong. Now, if you get a pair of these and get good at it and end up loving bombing hills, let me know so I can edit this! But, from our testing, it looked like you would have a better time Freelining around flatland or small hills / grades.

Freelines - Gnarly or Gimmick?

Feeline Skates Review

Feeline Skates Review

Feeline Skates
After testing out these Freelines for a month, talking to Ryan Farrelly, the inventor, and watching all the videos on them I can get my paws on, I think Freelines are a great buy! But, only if you are looking for a new challenge, or if you want to turn heads. If you are looking for something like skateboarding or snowboarding, I don't think Freelines are the best - just stick with skateboarding or snowboarding! Freelines are something very unique, and they are a lot of fun, but they are their own thing. So, if you are looking for something different and new, I think Freelines might be it. A lot of products come out and THINK they are the new thing, but most are pretty lame, or a fancy gimmick at best. But I'm pretty sure there are depths to Freelines that no one even knows about yet. Trick variations and tweaks that you can't do on a skateboard or inline skates. Freelines are a new, open, largely unexplored country, and if you like the idea of testing yourself on something new, then I think Freelines are a good fit for you.
User Reviews

Reviews for this section have been closed.

 5 out of 5
Hill Bombing, Member W351D3

I'd have to agree with Justibug, hillbombing is alot of fun especially up here in Washington, the cars have no idea what's up. I have people asking me all the time what I'm riding. Which is cool because last time I was told which was like summer of '09, there was only about fifty pairs up here. It's easy to stop and carve; my favorite thing to do is downhilling, the tough part is finding a road that is not made out of oil and gravel. You can pump up hills and literally ride for miles at a time. It does take some time to learn however, but if you want a challenge this is it. Pros. never stepping off your skates No speed wobble (If you do have some wobble it is generated by the strength of your legs and feet alone.) Excellent for bombing, cruising around town, and showing off. An Excellent challenge. Cons. never stepping off your skates (If you dont have good shoes your feet will really hurt standing in the same spot the whole time) I haven't had any problems with the set up with the wheels, the S frame tends to wear away after awhile if you are taking hard turns or doing sliding of any kind. I'd definately recommend these to others. And skate 'em almost everyday.

24 out of 27 people found this helpful.

See all 3 reviews

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.