What Is "Skate Baking" And Is It Necessary?
“Baking,” another term for the heat molding process, provides the player with the opportunity to further improve the fit of their skate. The process involves heating the skates at a high temperature, followed by tightly tying the laces with the foot inside the boot. After the player sits with the bottom of the blades against a soft surface for about 15 minutes, the boots will have molded to the shape of player’s feet. This process helps reduce the break-in period for new skates that have a very stiff boot. It is important to note that baking is NOT a necessary process. In fact, some players prefer the traditional way of breaking in skates which is to simply wear them.
Discount Hockey suggests ‘baking’ ice hockey skates when purchasing intermediate to advanced level skates. Recreational and beginner skates are not recommended because the bake would make the lifespan of the skate much shorter. Additionally, recreational skates do not carry enough stiffness to need ‘breaking in’, and baking can wear materials down to provide less support.