You love to roller skate, but do you know much about its history? Most people don’t! Check out some of these important moments in skating history.
- 1743 – The first appearance of roller skates! They were created for a stage show in London.
- 1819 – The first skate design was patented. It was sort of a primitive inline skate; basically an ice skate with wheels instead of a blade. This design had little maneuverability, but skaters loved it!
- 1857 – The first public roller skating rinks opened! Can you believe that Rollerland is just one of a long line of skate centers going back over 150 years?
- 1863 – James Plimpton invents the four-wheeled turning roller skate, which we call the quad skate today. The two pairs of side-by-side wheels made for better turning, balance, and agility. We still use a very similar design today! Toe stops were patented in 1876, and polyurethane wheels were created in the 1970s.
- 1880 – The beginning of mass production of roller skates, opening the door for even more popularity. Newspapers described “rinkomania” in the 1880s and 1890s. Folks were wild for skating!
- 1992 – Roller hockey makes its way to the Summer Olympics in Barcelona as a demonstration sport. Twelve nations entered teams of ten each, and Argentina took home the gold medal, followed on the podium by Spain and Italy.
- 2004 – The Women’s Flat Track Derby Association was founded as a governing body for roller derby. The male counterpart was formed in 2007. Today there are thousands of derby clubs across the country!
Be a part of history. Join us at Rollerland Skate Center for tons of fun this summer!