Saturday, April 28, 2007

Okay… What’s With This?!?

Over the years, hiking and rollerblading have been staple ways of exercising one’s heart in an effort to keep the blood pressure down and the heart strong. Nothing is better than getting out there for some good clean fresh air and wholesome exercise… Don’t you agree?

I was in Toronto picking up my daughter from college this morning and, as I was driving past the boardwalk along the shores of Lake Ontario, I couldn’t help but notice a number of rollerbladers rolling up and down the boardwalk. Each one of them looked fit… Each one of them looked happy. Later on that day, as I cruised past some walking trails, I also noticed some hikers… young children and teenagers all the way up to senior citizens. Again, each of them, except for one man, again looked fit and happy.

Now what does that tell you? Well, what it tells me is that, in order to stay in shape; you must “work at it.” Now, this is not a post about keeping fit nor is it a post on staying happy… It’s a post on staying safe!

The rollerbladers were not on the streets rollerblading. They were safely on a boardwalk designed for such activity. The hikers were also on a hiking trail far from people who drive like my wife… and “no” she does not read my blog!

Shortly after arriving home from picking up my daughter, I picked up a flyer from our local Canadian Tire hardware store and perused through its pages. Page by page I made my way through it until I came across page ten. I looked at it for a while and then made my way to the proceeding pages. Something in the back of my head kept bugging me about page ten and so I returned to it… After taking another good look at the photograph and the product that they were selling, I couldn’t help but think that there was something definitely wrong with what I was looking at… An active hiker wearing rollerblades on a hiking trail. Now, if I am not mistaken, there is something definitely wrong with this form of exercise… it’s just downright unsafe!

Imagine flying down a trail of mixed surfaces with holes, debris, loose gravel, rocks cliffs, water and who knows what else when all of a sudden danger lurks … this lady in the photo would not survive! Oh, I know… she has a helmet! Well, at least she might remain conscious after her head bounces of the boulder… that way she would be very well aware of her body careening off the side of the embankment! I also suppose that she is also playing it safe with those knee, wrist and elbow protectors… they should really help as she rolls face first into a solid maple tree! You get my drift?

Upon closer inspection of these un-cool looking rollerblades, you would also notice that there appears to be no braking system on them! Now, call me a worry wart but I would think that, not having a braking system on this product would not be advantageous to one’s physical health!

The advertisement states that “these multi terrain skates with large wheels make dirt, gravel and grass easy to handle." I cannot ever imagine rollerblades on anything else than a hard debris-free surface ever being easy to handle or a safe or wholesome form of exercise… not unless you are desperate enough to find yourself in the local hospital physiotherapy centre after ripping out the tendons of your ankles as you failed to negotiate a curve in the trail.

Now, I don’t know about you but I think that I will pass up the opportunity to fork out $130 for these babies and the hundreds of dollars for the medical bills later.

What will they think of next?

15 comments:

Cheryl said...

But look at how much fun they seem to be having! Until, that is, the accident. I can safely say you'd never see my smiling face on a pair of all-terrain rollerblades. You should have seen my biking spill 50 yards from my house on level ground. Didn't use both brakes, you know?

Dave said...

Bike wipeouts! How can I forget! How many paked cars did I hot during my formative years??? I can't even imagine! LOL

Monika said...

I saw those a couple of days ago, at Canadian Tire. I thought they are going backwards with "inventing" new stuff. They are real cluncky. Do we always have to have wheels on our feet?

Em said...

These "multi-terrain" skates are odd looking! Looks like roller skates with training wheels!

Hammer said...

Not for me thanks. I'm clumbsy on flat ground.

Lone Grey Squirrel said...

Dave, let's get ahead of the trend and go into business by motorising those off-road roller skates! Yeah! (and we still won't have brakes!)

Becky Wolfe said...

Yep, pure insanity if you ask me. I still feel safest on my own two (non-rolling) feet. I have perfectly good roller-blades (and ice skates) that I have never been capable of mastering. (grandmas in walkers go faster than I can go on those) Give me hiking boots anyday!

Janice Thomson said...

I spent hours and hours on rollerskates when young...and in a rollercade suited for that...I can't imagine being on grass and gravel...and without stops I wouldn't even use them on sidewalks or pavement for fear of being on my butt more than on my feet.

patterns of ink said...

Hearing you talk of Toronto made me miss it. We used to go there often. There was a castle there. Was it Castle Loma? We also used to go to Jack Minor's Bird Sanctuary to see the geese.
I quoted you in Part IV of "Why Bloggers Blog" Sunday night. Hope that's okay.

Josie said...

They look like those huge monster trucks that come to BC Place Stadium every once in a while.

I remember as a kid strapping on roller skates and skating down a steep hill. We used to wipe out once in a while, and we never wore helmets, knee pads, etc.

Josie

Michelle said...

Not my idea of ideal off-roading...

...I'd kill myself.

Proxima said...

As Spock would say, "That would be illogical."

Not only are they dangerous, but they would probably tear up the trails more then boots and shoes do.

-P

CS said...

Ever heard of mountain boarding? My ten year old bought one - it's like a big skate board with big tires. It's designed to go off trail. Has a hand brake, but he'd noticed none of the men in the video used one, so he promptly removed it. I cannot tell you what it was like to see him barreling down the steep road, and then flying head first off it onto the pavement. I thought my heart would not start beating again. But now he races down the grassy hill of my yard on it without falling, so he's learning.

Susan Kelly Skitt said...

Very interesting. I rollerblade on a paved trail at a state park in Pennsylvania. The path winds around a lake and can be tough to navigate (there's loose gravel in spots, sticks, leaves). I could probably use some of those big clunky looking things!

I much prefer the smoother surfaces. I can get going at a pretty good clip once I reach the straight-of-way on top of the dam.

BTW - I'm visiting via Becky's blog. My hubby and I traveled to Toronto once on vacation. Beautiful... I hope to explore more of Canada one day :)

Susan said...

I doubt they could pick up much speed on that terrain! They would likley be travelling slower than if they walked.
My first time here, came via Leslies blog. Nice blog you have here and I enjoyed yor sence of 'tongue in cheek' humour.