Review: Rollerblade Maxxum 90

Is ’blading back? I sure hope so, because I’ve been having a blast with my Maxxum 90 inline skates from Rollerblade. Pragmatism drove the acquisition—I wanted to (discreetly) stay in hockey shape in the off-season—but after one self-conscious spin around the block, all apprehension vanished. I felt transported back to the ‘80s, unabashedly wheeling around town, the wind in my face and a pleasant burn in my quads as I bent into longer, smoother strides. In no time at all, I could cross over in the turns and negotiate swaths of road-gravel without incident. The last 30 years of inline-skate development have clearly paid off, as the Maxxum feels great underfoot, with stable 90mm wheels, micro-adjustable buckles for a snug fit, and quality bearings for a super-smooth ride. I’ve found skating to be a welcome break from running; I can also ride them to work and they pack easily in my canoe for a fun and speedy self-shuttle. Now I just need to learn how to stop. $270;