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Skate sharpening (SS) combined with a correct ProFile is the most defining factor in becoming a strong skater and it is fact that THE best players are always THE best skaters. To dispute SS being directly related to top tier skating skill (specifically in a developing player), it's likely you've limited the ability of your own player or yourself especially if you routinely sharpen on a Sparx sharpener. Is your 6U, 8U, 10U in the upper 1/4 of their team skating ability?
If not, rethink the "convenience factor" the next time you pass your players skates off to another hockey parent with a Sparx. Adult players: can superior sharpening help you skate a few clicks stronger? 100% YES!
Sparx has marketed well the idea that hockey parents are far too busy to get skates sharpened anywhere outside of their own home. The belief that a home sharpener actually produces superior blade quality (which IS a necessity to take a young player to the next level), is the most undermining factor connected to individual player skill. When you consider that 77% of American youth hockey players age 6-16 have 1 or 2 parents with zero to very little on-ice hockey experience, its easy to understand how Sparx has been able to market inferiority to parents who, to no fault of their own, can't relate to what true edge is supposed to cut like at game time. Here are some of our customer facts as it relates directly to using a Sparx: In 2022, I have 1,580+ mid to high young players 8U to 15U from 47 states shipping multiple sets of Bauer /CCM steel for skate sharps. Of 1290 players who purchased ProFiled skate steel from me in 2022, almost 700 were in some way using a Sparx. Now 60% (397+) of the original 700 Sparx users have continued to ship us the original ProFiled set, opting to bypass Sparx while understanding true quality. These results from our own customer base proves Sparx does not stand up to the above average skater and can not hold a quality edge. Reality is that an average skater requires even more of a superior sharpening quality than the stronger skater! Stronger players can manipulate an inferior edge....but trust in this: most of our kids can NOT.
If you have a youth player routinely getting sharpened on a Sparx you are literally cheating them. An automated machine can not produce a serious long lasting edge with precise hollow (and it is hollow alone that allows a skater to cut and hold edge when transitioning).
For myself the Pro behind SkateBladz, there is nothing better than a 10U telling his dad, "you gotta send the steel back to SkateBladz."
For Sparx owners, you disagree - I get it. So would I after investing $1500 on a machine that offers bear minimum quality and accuracy for very short periods of ice-time. But hey, it does hold you over until you can just sharpen them over again and again. Fact: A serious skate edge when done by a Pro on a non-automated machine will hold 8-10 hrs while with a defined hollow.
I operate 4 skate machines at SkateBladz and YES, SPARX is one of them along with a BladeMaster, Dupliskate & ProSharp. We offer Sparx as a devalued $2.99 cheap SS alternative because the result IS just that - a cheap edge. Sparx sells its own inferiority to those who use it once. Sparx is a "hold you over device" but if used routinely and continually it is 1000% counter productive to building a top tier skater.
SkateBladz.com ProFiles more high end skate steel than any hockey dealer. I opened HT Pro Shop at 20 and its 25 years later. 500++ 5 STAR REVIEWS on GOOGLE.
Even with the Sparx invasion in the last 7 years, SkateBladz is cutting 27% MORE sets of skate blades than the year prior to the first year Sparx was available. If I can assist with SS or PA, reach out. Be careful of depending on Sparx continually, it will limit your young player. If local to us in NY, stop by - the Sparx option is basically free. Feel free to Share our link with Sparx Hockey. We are happy to face-off in a Quality Test any time. I have a big sponsor who will happily back the competition LOL but True.
Those choosing us are the smartest parents and beer leaguers in the country because Skate Quality is King and SkateBaldz reigns Supreme.
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