What is Jam Skating? Explaination of a New, Fun Dance Style on Roller Skates
What is jam skating you may wonder? Jam skating is a form of skating that involves being able to perform choreographed routine dances or freestyle dancing on skates. Typically seen in indoor and outdoor rinks but also practiced in any recreational environment. All jam skaters having roots in roller disco wheels on their feet, it becomes more than just breakdancing with skates on.
Jam skaters perform to the music playing. Staying on beat, matching the song and energy is all part of the skaters musicality. These techniques and abilities to perform wild moves all while dancing and staying on beat is vital to their overall jam skating ability. Jam skating has become an extremely popular sport and very competitive. Skaters will compete against other jam skaters in difference dance scenarios. They will typically be pushing their abilities to the limit to out dance the opposing jam skater to come out victorious in the dance battle.
Skate jam battles are not the only way skaters can compete. Jam skaters can also compete against an opposing skater or skaters through performances. The performances are generally pre choreographed by the skaters and this gives them an opportunity to express their creativity while jam skating.
In this article you can find out why it's not the same as artistic roller skating.
How to Jam Skate
Jam skating as amazing as it looks and easy as the pros make it look, it’s a niche that requires a lot of discipline and practice. Jam skating consists of knowing how to work around your edges on your skates and also being comfortable with pushing past your boundaries. Jam skating is a form of expressing one’s creativity through music, dance and skating all at once. Once you’ve mastered all 3, it’s a matter of merging all 3 together and showing off your skills. Jam skating is a skill that you have to constantly practice and adapt to, as you are dancing and skating to the beat of the music, you are expressing your skills as a dancer by pushing your limits and exceeding your own boundaries by unlocking new moves.
Though it's more an art than a sport, we definitely advise you to skate at first with protection and learn the safety falling on roller skates.
Roller skating styles
Within the niche of roller skating it can be further broken down into two more styles of skating. These two styles of skating can go hand in hand as they both umbrella from the same niche. The first style being rhythm skating and the second one being jam skating.
Jam skating is historically known to be most similarly related to break dancing and choreographed performances while on skates. Rhythm skating being more related to the way you dance to the best of the music and follow the rhythm of a particular song. There are some differences in the equipment used on the skates that will further separate the two different styles. A few significant differences to note are the height of the boot, whether it’s a low cut or high cut boot, the size of the wheel, whether you are using a toe stop or a toe plug and even the axles used on the bottom of the skate boot. Each of these pieces of equipment will change your skating style and allow easier access to certain moves and even give you better maneuverability depending on what you want to achieve.
Jam skating particularly will be seen in the center of a roller rink performing their dances and ground work, while rhythm skaters stay mostly to the outer part of the rink as they flow and rhythm with their own distinguished foot work around the entire rink.
Jam roller skates
Jam roller skates is a term used to describe all skaters who dance while skating. While there are different niches under this umbrella, it all boils down to your preference and style you would like to learn.
If you like contact team skating, check our guide about roller hockey in our next article.