how to tie hockey skates

How to Tie Hockey Skates

This article is a quick rundown of how to properly tie hockey skates, not figure skates. If you would like to read how to properly tie figure skates click HERE.

Tying hockey skates is not as difficult as some may think, however if you want a comfortable fit and want to be able to spend long hours on the ice without your feet blistering, then tying your hockey skates correctly is going to be very important. So let’s get down to it.

First you want to make sure the boot isn’t too big or too small. A good way to test this is to put your foot in the skate with the laces loose and untied. Then stand parallel to a wall or a step and lightly kick the wall until your toes touch the front of the skate. There should be a small gap between your heel and the heel of the skate boot. If there is no gap and your toes are touching the front of the skate, that means the skate is too small. You will need a bigger size. Now, if there is a small gap between your heel and the skate boot, point your index and middle fingers behind your heel, if you can do that then that’s a good fit.




If you can fit them behind your heel and there is still a gap, that means the skate is too big, you will need to downsize your skate.

The reason I tell you this first is because no matter how good my explanation of “how to tie a hockey skate” is, if your skates are the wrong size, you will be miserable on the ice and very uncomfortable.


Okay, so let’s get into tying the skate.


  1. Sit down

  2. Put skates on (make sure to have your laces loose when doing this, you will cause major damage to your skates if you shove your foot into a skate that is not loose enough, I always take out the lace of the top few eyelets just to make sure I don’t hurt the skate)  

  3. Kick your heel against floor a few times to make sure your foot is all the way back to the heel.

  4. There should be around 9-10 eyelets on your skate for your laces. For ease of explanation I will number them from 1-10 (1 being the closest to your toes).

  5. Grab the lace around the 3rd eyelet. 





  6. Pull tight! Now pull again, tighter.

  7. Then grab the lace on the 4th eyelet and pull just as hard, repeat until you get to 6th or 7th  eyelet  (right at the base of your ankle.) pull tight and hold

  8. This next part is very important. When you pull the next lace you do not want it to be wicked tight like you have been doing. Your ankles need a little flexibility. However, it cannot be too loose. Just pull at a comfortable tightness that still gives you support. Repeat for next thread.



  9. On eyelet #10 (top) pull tight again and then sauce a nice bow tie at the end and you should be ready to skate!




  10. If you get out on the ice and are feeling like a bender, that means your skates are too loose around your ankles, so go re-tie them a little tighter.

  11. If you get out on the ice and are feeling like your foot is no longer there and is getting numb, that means you tied it way too tight near your ankle and it needs to be a bit looser.

  12. This is what your ankles should look like when finished:



  13. Make sure when you are done skating and are tired and cold and just want to take your skates off and leave ASAP, loosen your skates all the way so your foot slips out with ease, you will kill your skate if you need to yank it out or step on the heel to yank your foot out. Respect the skate and unlace the first few eyelets and then loosen the rest…your foot should pop right out.





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