29
January

Choosing the Best Synthetic Ice

Posted by Brett
happy woman with ice skates outdoors

Putting in a rink is a fun and exciting process that can take your winter sports game to the next level. For over 20 years, we have placed synthetic ice rinks in homes, practice arenas, and other venues. We believe using the best synthetic ice around will guarantee full use of your rink for years to come.

A synthetic ice rink is an excellent addition to any home with athletes who love winter sports. They can fit into most spaces, whether in a driveway, basement, or an NHL practice facility. Having your home rink can save time and money in the long run. 

Booking ice time can be difficult and expensive for athletes and families. Ice time isn’t when you want it to be, but when the rink is available. You may also pay extra if you’re going to have time on your own without having to navigate fellow skaters.

KwikRink Synthetic Ice hopes to provide winter sports enthusiasts with a rink that skates as close to natural ice as possible. Be sure to visit our site today for a free quote! We service nationwide, and we look forward to working with you. 

father with child teaching how to play hockey on synthetic ice

Your Rink Your Way 

Before giving a quote, you must set expectations for your rink. These are often points we discuss when planning a rink with our clients. 

Who will use the rink?

Is this rink for a serious athlete, or is it for the family to have some serious fun? The number of skaters who will use the rink is also something to consider as it affects the rink’s size and where you place it. 

The ability of those using the rink may also be something to consider when planning. 

Where will your rink go?

One of the reasons we love our rinks is they fit just about anywhere. We have installed single lanes to practice skating fundamentals. We have also built them to cover both basement and arena floors. 

The location of your rink isn’t something that has to be permanent. Our synthetic ice comes in panels that fit together like puzzle pieces. You can move the panels easily and adjust the size by adding or removing pieces.

Mobility is an excellent feature because your rink can change when your needs for it do. The panels can also be stored if needed. 

Bells and Whistles

Personalization is one of the most fun parts of the designing process. Any of our rinks can be tricked out to your specification. 

  • Shooting traps 
  • Netting and plexiglass
  • Training aids 
  • Colored markings 
  • Dasher boards
  • Goals and nets 

friends ice skating on the best synthetic ice

The Best Synthetic Ice 

Since the 1990s, we have significantly upgraded our ice panels four different times. We’ve also made many minor changes to our panels over the years. We see it as our duty to change with technology to deliver the best synthetic ice possible.

Through the decades, we have seen companies build synthetic ice that doesn’t grow with technology. These panels are too hard, meaning the skates can’t dig in, or too soft to the point where skaters can only move straight.

These panels can’t compare to actual ice and do not give customers an ideal skating experience.

Our top product is about 90% of the speed of real ice. This means it can be dug into without being too soft and can withstand hockey stops and jumps from figure skaters.

Each panel is 4×8 feet and made of lubricated plastic, designed to be low maintenance. The upkeep is as simple as sweeping dirt from the rink and occasionally gently mopping it. 

In addition to the ease of installation, the low maintenance nature of our panels makes us stand out in our industry. Our panels come in different sizes and can last a decade of skating with proper care.

Regular maintenance doesn’t stop at sweeping and cleaning. Proper skate sharpening contributes to the authentic feel of our ice. Having skates that are kept sharp also encourages care for your equipment no matter your sport or season.

In a recent blog, we speak about how important the quality of ice can be for hockey players as they play and practice. Information in this post applies to anyone who skates on real or synthetic ice. 

Our ice’s very high molecular weight supports skating over time and will help maintain a great surface. Our panels’ lubrication offers push and the friction necessary to recreate a real ice skating experience.

We want to give our customers a skate that feels as real as possible with little upkeep, no Zamboni needed. We know everyone loves to watch a Zamboni, but they aren’t always practical.

Using the best materials available and changing as technology advances makes our synthetic ice panels great for personal and professional rinks alike. 

best synthetic ice for hockey

Make it Personal 

No matter your skill set or space available, we have a rink for you. We happily serve customers worldwide, bringing them a personal skating experience contributing to both physical and emotional health wellbeing.

According to NeuroRuber, an online health publication, ice skating can boost moods and relax those who lace-up. We want to be a part of the experience for our clients, no matter their ability or location.

KwikRink Synthetic Ice has had the honor of serving clients worldwide and has installed rinks everywhere from driveways to cruise ships. Each rink is unique to its owner and brings joy, exercise, and the very best synthetic ice product on the market.

We invite you to visit our site today to get ideas for your rink and get a free quote. There are several pictures of rinks we have built you can glean ideas from to make your rink the best it can be!

We look forward to working with you to build a rink guaranteed to provide memories and fun for your family. 

hockey goalie playing on synthetic ice

When it comes to hockey, it is not necessarily the time you put into hockey practice, but the effort you put into the craft. To give your best at all times, you need a quality surface that allows you to excel in skill practice without added barriers. So what’s the best synthetic ice for hockey? 

You may not know that skating on synthetic ice has some advantages over natural ice. There have been several innovations in artificial ice technology recently, so research the best synthetic ice for hockey before you commit. You want to make sure you purchase a high-quality product with durability, so you invest your money wisely. 

Playing hockey on KiwkRink Synthetic Ice will drive you toward success in your game! Our synthetic ice panels are used by pro hockey teams and are found in rinks internationally. Best of all, they are available for you to use right at home, allowing you to experience the best for your hockey training, day in and day out. 

Here’s why KwikRink Synthetic Ice is the best synthetic ice for hockey, not only locally but across the world. 

young kids playing on the best synthetic ice for hockey

A Leader in Innovation and Technology

At KwikRink Synthetic Ice, we make our synthetic ice surface with plastic with very high molecular weight (VHMW). We cut the plastic into custom synthetic ice tiles that come in various custom edges for assembly. It is easy to press the panels into place by using a rubber mallet.

Curious about another unique characteristic? Innovative development in synthetic ice surfaces allows for a smooth and fast skating experience. The glide on KwikRink Synthetic Ice tiles is 90% similar to real ice, one of the best on the market.

The ice panels are also the best synthetic ice for hockey because they are low maintenance. KwikRink Synthetic Ice tiles are self-lubricating. The periodic application of topical lubricants to the ice is not necessary. Self-lubrication saves you both time and money. 

If you are a skater, you know how a natural skating surface feels when you stop and accelerate. Imagine the feel on self-lubricating panels, which offers the advantage of quick turns and easy gliding for your skate blade. You become a stronger and faster skater by practicing on a synthetic ice rink. 

The Most Authentic Ice Feel

The best synthetic ice for hockey offers high-quality plastic that retains 90% or more of ice’s natural glide. No synthetic ice product can feel exactly like natural ice, but there are several ways products can come close to a natural skating surface. 

  • Use quality materials: Cheap is not going to offer the best synthetic ice on the market. If the product results in soft tiles, you will have more shavings and friction on the skates over time. Self-lubricating tiles with a very high molecular weight will be your best investment!
  • Sharpen your blades often: Hockey players are hard on their blades. You know a sharp edge allows for better performance, and this includes when skating on artificial ice surfaces. 
  • Keep a clean surface: The best synthetic ice for hockey will be low maintenance, but you still want to ensure the tiles remain clean after use. A cloth broom can clear away dust and dirt while using a gentle cleanser rids it of sweat and spills. Good maintenance will promote the feeling of natural ice now and in the future. 

hockey players playing on synthetic ice

Improvement in Performance

Ice skating on synthetic ice provides a coefficient of friction. You can see training improvement with additional ice time right at home. You’ll notice the following advantages when training on the best synthetic ice for hockey:

  • Increased speed in your skate as you explosively push off the self-lubricating panels
  • Improved cardiovascular stamina and muscle endurance as you practice more at home
  • Enhance precision in maneuvering, changing direction, and stopping on your hockey skates. You will notice that practicing on rinks that are in the home or smaller in square feet (such as in a basement in the garage) offer an advantage in performance enhancement
  • More practice time which results in skill improvement (no need to schedule ice time, wait for frozen ponds, or a space to practice)

Customized to Your Needs

The best synthetic ice for hockey will allow you to customize the size of your rink. You may be in the market for a small rink that can be put in the home to practice shooting or quick skating technique. As an alternative, you may want a regulation size rink to play games and off-ice practice in the backyard.

Determine the type of rink you need and what you will use it for the most. Of course, consider the amount of space you have available and how the room can best accommodate a synthetic ice rink.

young child playing goalie on the best synthetic ice for hockey

Superior Customer Service

You will likely have several questions before you commit to a synthetic ice surface. KwikRink Synthetic Ice is the best in synthetic ice for hockey because of our superior customer service. 

When you speak to one of our experts, you know you are talking to an industry leader in customized synthetic ice. Whether you are interested in our rent-to-buy program or are ready to purchase today, we are here to answer questions and assist you in making the process seamless. 

Our experienced rink builders can help you select the products, size, and accessories to design the best synthetic ice rink for hockey in your home. We want you to be satisfied and feel you are treated just like a pro! 

KwikRink is the Best Synthetic Ice for Hockey

KwikRink Synthetic Ice only offers superior materials, including tool-free interlocking tiles with excellent glide and resilience. We offer custom sizing and serve those wanting to build a rink in their home and city officials who may wish to create a large community rink. We can customize KwikRink Synthetic Ice tiles to the needs you have. 

We will walk with you through every step of the process, including layout design, concept creation, maintenance, and upkeep. We want to ensure your new hockey rink is the best the industry has to offer. 

Visit our website today for a free quote and get going on building the hockey rink of your dreams! 

 

A hockey skate and a figure skate on the best synthetic ice

What is the best synthetic ice? The market is flooded with so many options for artificial ice. It’s a tough world for consumers, as you are generally needing to make a costly investment in a surface before trying it out. 

The below points outline some of the things to look for in a synthetic ice product that KwikRink proudly delivers.

When you’re ready to take the leap and the best synthetic ice for your practice or home space, contact KwikRink for a free quote.

The Glide

An indoor artificial ice rink by KwikRink

This is the starting point, as there are a lot of synthetic ice surfaces out there that put a black eye on the whole industry. There are still companies selling similar synthetic ice surfaces that we were selling in the mid-1990s!

All of these synthetic ice options will need a lubricant spray to achieve any glide. Many companies are currently selling “self-lubricating” surfaces. These are surfaces that achieve glide without any lubricant aids.

This is where it gets tricky…to what degree is the glide comparable to actual ice? Even within the “self-lubricating” category, there will be a vast array of how the glide performs. Artificial ice is generally made with a resin and a “slip agent”.

The slip agent is what makes the synthetic ice glide. The biggest difference in glide among competing companies will be what specific slip agent is used, and how much of it is used.

Cheaper synthetic ice brands tend to use less effective slip agents or use it at a much lower percentage than the best synthetic ice surfaces. The glide will be much stickier, and may even require a lubricant spray to achieve the true desired effect of real ice.

Generally speaking, with an increase in the proper slip agent, comes an increase in the glide (resin dependent). This also will cause an increase in price, as it is more costly to manufacture. The best synthetic ice has a glide in excess of 90% when compared to real ice.

The Hardness Balance

AN outdoor synthetic ice rink by KwikRink

The hardness of the synthetic ice surface is imperative for durability and a natural feel. Many other surfaces are too soft or too hard to offer the feel of natural ice. These products tend to use a cheaper resin, which softens the surface of the product.

Or they use little-to-no slip agent, which hardens the surface (slip agents tend to soften synthetic ice). Durability or performance for these synthetic ice surfaces will be dramatically affected in a negative manner if not enough slip agent is used.

Skating on soft surfaces feels similar to real ice that is too soft. You will dig into the ice and feel like you are skating on a train track. This also adds friction and slows down the glide.

On the other hand, surfaces can be much too hard and dull the blades very fast. These tend to be seen in older surfaces, and surfaces with no slip agent added to the resin. We often refer to these synthetic ice surfaces as, “dead cutting boards”.

Achieving the right balance of hardness in synthetic ice leads to natural ice-like skating surfaces, that are not too hard or too soft on the blades. The best synthetic ice has the perfect hardness balance and is incredible for synthetic ice skating.

The Seamless Connection

installing kwikrink synthetic ice panels

There are two main ways that synthetic ice panels are connected. These two methods are known as the “tongue and groove” and “dovetail” connections.

The tongue and groove connection came first. In fact, this is how we connected our panels back in the late ’90s. This connection is a lot more work for the user and makes it very difficult to install and take apart.

This connection can also pose problems in larger spaces, as panels like to pull away from one another and don’t want to connect.

The dovetail connection is what we currently are using. This connection allows for fast and easy installation/tear down. The key to the KwikRink Lock-Rink dovetail assembly is that the male and female joints have a slight overbite for a snug fit.

With proper subflooring, this connection is seamless and will not trip skaters or stop pucks. The best synthetic ice surfaces are ones that are absolutely seamless!

The Best Synthetic Ice

An aerial shot of teh best synthetic ice rink in a backyard

  1. The best synthetic ice surfaces have glide in excess of 90%  when compared to real ice
  2. The best synthetic ice surfaces have a natural ice-like feel – not too hard or soft
  3. The best synthetic ice surfaces have a seamless connection and offer the best skating experience

Searching for the best synthetic ice in today’s can leave the average consumer with a headache. At KwikRink Synthetic Ice, we invest heavily in research and development and have been manufacturing our own surfaces for 20 years. Manufacturing our own synthetic ice allows us to make the best synthetic ice on the market!

If you are ready to learn more information about KwikRink’s ice rinks or get a free quote, reach out to us. We are happy to help and are ready to give you and your family the best synthetic ice tiles around.