With the winter season in play, a lot of us will be looking for a new pair of wheels to start the season with a new step to our game. For those who have been out of the gear game for a while, or just need a fresh take on skate fit as their old boot just doesn’t cut it for comfort anymore, we’ve put together a few guides that we’ll be releasing.
First up are the fit profiles for Bauer and Mission. With both brands being operated under the same parent company, you’ll find a lot of material, chassis and wheel profile similarities, so let’s take a quick peek at what the fits we’ve got in are.
The line of skates most people in Bauer skates are familiar with, the Vapor family features a narrow forefoot that tapers into a slightly more generous heel for better mobility. This family is Bauer’s answer for those with narrower foot profiles, with a snug, low-volume (foot thickness/instep height) foot last and a V-shaped heel. Vapor skates tend to open up in the heel after the bake, and allows players’ heels to slip deeper into that v-pocket for a more secure heel lock, so don’t be alarmed if the Vapor boot feels a hair too short from the get go – your foot will settle back a bit after a break in or a bake!
Mission’s Inhaler DS family is the predecessor to their current NLS line. But with plenty of stock and a familiar fit, this is still the go-to line for many players who have become accustomed to Mission’s fit process. Built off the same boot last as Bauer’s Supreme family of ice hockey skates, the Mission Inhaler DS family features a more anatomical, 360-degree boot last that a large majority of skaters with average width feet fit into. An anatomical, snug heel pocket that tapers into a slightly wider forefoot and toebox, Mission’s DS skate is slightly wider-fitting than Bauer’s Vapor line, with a standard “E” width sizing compared to Vapor’s standard “D” width.
With Mission’s 2016/2017 update to the Inhaler line of skates, comes a slightly different fit thanks to more advanced materials and foams found in the quarter package. The new Curv Composite, and ballistic nylon formulae and memory-foam like thermo-formable padding found in the liners of the NLS family of skate allows for the same level of protection, durability and custom fit, but with lighter, thinner materials. Fundamentally, the fit still draws from Bauer/Mission’s anatomical foot last, but with a bit more width and volume throughout the skate; planting the NLS line’s “E” width fit in between the old DS line’s “E” and “EE” widths. Nevertheless, the heat-moldability of the skates allows for the skate to wrap around a foot to re-create the old DS fit, but the new NLS line is perfect for Mission skaters who needed to punch out their DS skates just a hair for some comfort.
Naturally, at the end of the day, boot fit is the most important component to skate performance. Being professionally fitted for your skates to best accommodate not only your foot shape, but your skating style, foot issues and biomechanics behind your stride will always yield the best results. For the Vancouverites and visitors, swing into the shop here at Coast to Coast Hockey for your foot evaluation and skate fit today!