Roller Shoes Send 1600 Uncoordinated People To The Emergency Room

Here’s a shocking update, putting little wheels on the bottom of your shoes is dangerous. No! Yes! 1600 emergency room visits last year were blamed on roller shoes or “heelys.” For those of you not familiar with “heelys” they’re the wheeled shoe that sends children floating past you like the nun in Blues Brothers as you walk around Target shopping for paper towels and Diet Coke.

And they’re dangerous. Sort of. A firm hired to study the shoe responded with the statement: “…using wheeled footwear is 42 times safer than basketball, 29 times safer than bicycling, and 18 times safer than skateboarding.” Ok. Couldn’t someone have hired a firm to study how annoying the shoes are, rather than silly old safety? —MEGHANN MARCO

1,600 roller-shoe injuries reported [Seattle PI]


Edit Your Comment

  1. dbeahn says:

    Funny, every time I see some inconsiderate little brat rolling around on these things with their parents just watching them annoy everyone around them, cutting people off and making people stop and move out of their way, I often think about “accidentally” throwing an arm out to clothesline them, or tripping them….

    Apparently there are people that do that…

  2. DashTheHand says:

    I actually found some in my size, so my girlfriend and I each got a pair. Those little kids make it look so easy. Holy hell these things are hard to balance on. I’m close to paying one to give me lessons.

  3. enroper says:

    Ugh. I cannot stand those dreadful shoes. First of all, it’s bad enough we have a childhood obesity epidemic in this country. Now kids don’t even really have to walk anywhere.

    And then you have to worry about some little snot nosed punk ramming into you at 5mph while you’re trying to get groceries.

    I’ve come dangerously close to tripping some of these kids but keep from doing it because I don’t wish to be thrown in jail by a pissed off suburban mom.

  4. Pelagius says:

    “they’re the wheeled shoe that sends children floating past you like the nun in Blues Brothers”

    Ha! Though they always remind me more of those twin girls in “The Shining”

  5. AlteredBeast (blaming the OP one article at a time.) says:

    My concern is not the saftey of the kids, but of bystanders. I’ve seen them come flying out of isles at food stores, and almost knocking over old ladies. I might be safter than basketball or skateboarding, but neither of those are acceptable in retail locations.

  6. SaveMeJeebus says:

    I had a kid zoom by me in Target lastnight. It pissed me off until I realized that I would have owned a pair and done the same thing if I were a kid again. All they need is a Totenkopf symbol on the side and the kids are all set.

  7. Echodork says:

    One day, I will trip a kid wearing these.

    My children will exist without rollershoes.

  8. Youthier says:

    Just another reason to hate children and marketers.

  9. acambras says:

    Some stores have banned these — I’ve seen at least a couple of local news stories about it. Store owners are worried about getting sued if the kid or an innocent bystander gets injured.

  10. chrisgoh says:

    I really wish store management would put a stop to their customers kids using these. AND I wish parent would show more responsibility, they should not let their kids use these in stores, etc.

  11. joopiter says:

    They should be banned in stores, malls, schools etc. I don’t recall being allowed to wear roller skates indoors when I was a kid, despite what Tootie from Facts of Life was allowed to do. I don’t see how these are that much different.

    And yes, I’m with everybody else who’s itching to clothesline one of these snot-nosed brats and bitch out their overindulgent mothers.

  12. Kornkob says:

    I got yelled at by a parent when I called her kid a f****g brat after the kid nearly clipped me and then pushed my cart out of her way zipping through the store.

    I just looked at her for a moment and walked away.

    Then 5 minutes later thought of about 90 snippy, biting comments. grrrr

  13. superlayne says:

    The Penguin!!

    I had a pair of skate shoes like that when my feet were small enough to fit in them. They had two wheels, though, and buttons on the side, so you just had to click your feet together really hard Dorthy style to get going. I never broke anything, but I was too scared to use them outside of my house.

    I honestly haven’t seen a single kid with heelys in my area. My little brother wanted some, but then he got his senses straight and remembered he had no coordination.

  14. Wormfather says:

    Seriously people, it’s not that big of a deal. Everytime I’ve seen kids with them I’ve though “Cool”. If there is a problem, blame the kid not the product.

    Rollershoes dont hurt people, kids hurt people.

    Kids are going to be inconciderate in some way shape or form. Kids are the definition of self centered. We get to deal with it…for now…

  15. Jasmo says:

    I’d rather my kid used these and got hurt and discovered his boundaries than lived a cooped-up sheltered life of safety.

  16. Black Bellamy says:

    Hah, listen to all you old boring fogeys. Brats this and ban that and clothesline this omg how dare they.

    I think they’re cool. I approve of anything that allows kids to go fast and possibly injure themselves and others. It is the responsibility of the adult to get out of the way of an out of control and speeding child, always.

  17. brew400 says:

    “i wanna go fast”

    i applaud these wheeled maniacs that they have the balls to say “hey wal-mart, stop putting items that i need all the way across the store”

    get the fudge out of the way grandmaw

  18. Jigen says:

    Man little kids wear those damn things all the time at the super market I work at. They run full speed, then roll around not looking at all where they’re going. All the while their parents are oblivious to what their children are doing.
    I don’t know how more don’t get seriously hurt.

  19. Oh, these fill me with rage, completely irrational rage. My children know that they will get Heelies over my dead body (because I’m the meanest mom in the world, but at least my kids aren’t assholes on wheels).

  20. bcostin says:

    I’m pretty laid back with kids having fun but I have to draw the line at these stupid things. Parents – control your children.

    Anyone else remember an episode of CHiPS where a gang of clever purse snatchers wore roller shoes (in groovy 70’s platform styles, of course) so they could make a quick escape after they grabbed their loot. Where are Ponch and John now that we really need them?

  21. quagmire0 says:

    Sorry, there’s no defense for this annoying fad. These shoes have annoyed me for a while. I don’t even blame the kids — much :P. I put most of the blame on the stores that sell them and the parents that buy them. It is basically the equivalent of roller skating or skateboarding in the store – and trust me, even YOUR kid is annoying! :)

  22. slapstick says:

    @DashTheHand: Oh, where did you find them? My boyfriend is in love with them and wants a pair like crazy.

  23. enroper says:


    Ya, super. Let your kid bust his tail in your driveway, not into the side of my shopping cart.

    I don’t give a crap if children decide to jump off skyscrapers in mass exodus from this earth. When they interfere with my day to day activities, then I get pissed.

  24. Pelagius says:

    Children lack consciences. It’s up to us, as adults, to beat some goddamn sense into them.

    Remember, children are our future.

  25. kerry says:

    I see kids wearing these in the worst possible places, and wonder why their parents let them. I was in a tile store once and saw this kid, kind of old for the shoes, maybe 12 or 13, zipping around the store at an alarming speed. I kept cringing, expecting her to go slamming into a display of tiles, causing a landslide of glass and marble. Of course, I also sort of hoped she’d get crushed and maybe learn a lesson. Ditto to the people who hate getting clipped by these kids at the supermarket. I’m not a total fogey, I understand why they’d be fun and know that kids need a little danger in order to learn lessons (I had more than my share of scraped knees), but these just seem like a deathtrap when used in some situations.

  26. brendahamLincoln says:

    My 7 year old nephew saved his money for weeks to buy a pair of these. For the life of him, though, he couldn’t master them. So now they’re in a closet somewhere collecting dust.

    My own opinion on these shoes varies. I don’t really have a problem with them, whenever I see a kid zip by I think it’s hilarious. Flying kids! Awesome. And I know if I were 8 or 9 I would have begged for a pair of these or done as my nephew did. But I can also see how they’d piss a lot of people off. I myself have never seen a kid be so reckless that they’re running into people or getting in the way, but maybe their parents are a rare breed of reckless responsible. “Sure, I’ll get you a dirtbike, but wear a helmet and eat your broccoli, son.”

  27. Brian Gee says:

    I tried to buy some for myself last week, but Big 5 only stocks them to men’s size 9. Instead I’m going to order them from Amazon. Like right now. I usually prefer to buy shoes where I can try them on, but the system is trying to keep me down. ;)

    @enroper: Kids still get exercise rolling around on these, due to the balance needed. They’ll get the health benefits just by not being stationary on a couch. I suspect that riding Heelys is better exercise than walking. I’ll find out soon enough.

    @SweetieDarling: Just wait until your kids grow up. After the sheltered life you’re giving them, they’ll be assholes on wheels as soon as they can get behind the wheel of a car and drive away from you.

    @brew400: Right on, bro! … er, brew…

  28. madktdisease says:

    a kid on the south shore of MA died last year when he rolled into traffic without looking. i can’t imagine why parents let their kids have these on outside their garage/driveway. oh wait, i can, parents are fucking idiots.

  29. jeffj-nj says:

    I have a pair of these. For reference, I’m 28. I used to wear them while valet parking. They make getting around the parking lot quickly very easily, and since the wheel is nowhere near the toe, they don’t impede driving at all.

    That said, here is a great story about one day I was wearing them…

    Customer: “Wait a minute. What are you wearing?”

    Me: “You mean my shoes?”

    Customer: “Yeah, lemme see those.”

    I stand on one foot and show him the sole of my other foot.

    Customer: “Oh my God, I can’t believe they made ’em…”

    (It should be noted this story takes place about 4 or 5 years ago)

    Me: “Huh?”

    Customer: “Yeah. I’ve seen these before. I work in insurance. Someone showed them to me before they started making them, asking what kind of liability they should be prepared for. I said none. Just don’t make them. I said they should stay far, far away from this idea. No good can come from it.”

    Me: “Seems they didn’t listen.”

    Customer: “Guess not.”

    And then I slid away to get his car. When I returned, he just shook his head.

  30. jeffj-nj says:

    @SweetieDarling: Don’t listen to Brian. My mom was a hard ass when I was a kid too, and I love her for it. I haven’t lived with her for years, but still get together at least once a week (sometimes more) for dinner. I can only hope to raise my children as well as I feel like she raised me. Your kids’ll be fine.

  31. Jon Parker says:

    Yeah, the kids running around with them are annoying. But god they look like fun, and if I was young enough, I’d be all over them.

    I do think they need to be banned from stores. More than half the posters here should get a rocking chair and take up a post on their front porch, screaming at the kids get off the damn lawn.

  32. Anitra says:

    They’re neat, and I don’t want to ban them, but parents need to teach their kids to be responsible and safe with them. I’m partly concerned for my own safety, and partly for the kid’s. I don’t want some parent screaming at me because their kid wheeled into my grocery cart going 15 mph.

    Seriously, I’ve had kids almost run into me wearing these things, and they don’t even say “excuse me”; somehow it’s my fault for being in their way.

  33. CTSLICK says:

    Bikes, roller blades, skateboards, Heelies blah blah blah all dangerous in some fashion and all are good fun for a lot of kids. My kids have all of the above and have the bumps and bruises to show for it…such is life.

    Kids zipping through stores on heelies pissing people off is not a problem caused by heelies nor should it be a call for them to be labeled evil. It IS a call to the oblivious parents of the world to get your kids under control, teach them some rules, set some boundaries and show some respect. Parents are the problem.

    And yes, for the record I rode a skateboard and yes I got my a$$ handed to me by my parents a couple of times for riding in places I shouldn’t have…and I learned.

  34. MercuryPDX says:

    I want those in my size.

    The little person on the Amazing Race had them, and it was hysterical to see her cousin dragging her through the airport like a piece of luggage.

  35. tinychicken says:

    I have a pair of crazy Italian roller sandals. I still haven’t worked up the courage to strap them to my feet yet. I don’t come by the title of World’s Least Graceful Human for nothing.

  36. enm4r says:

    I’m surprised at the amount of people here not blaming the individuals for their misuse. That said, I wouldn’t mind if they were not allowed to be used in stores, but since they are, I don’t complain.

    A couple months ago I was wheeling a cart around in Target and as I’m going through an aisle some kid probably 9 or 10 (old enough for me to not feel bad) comes zipping around the corner and flies right into the front of my cart, does some awkward and uncoordinated fall and hits his head on one of the shelves. Of course he starts crying, and the mom comes following around the corner, me just standing there behind my cart. She asks the obligatory “What happened?!” not to anyone in particular, and I just comment “I guess the cart was in his aisle space.”

    With an angry look, she turns to her kid and starts yelling at him for running into my cart, all the while this kid is on the floor supposedly (and perhaps legitimately) in pain crying. I felt some satisfaction that whether or not I agreed with her parenting, this kid wasn’t going to be pampered. Act stupid and you might get hurt, so when you do, don’t come crying to me. I walked off with a smile.

  37. Kyle says:

    I’m and adult with a pair of Heelys and while these things are fun they really are pretty dangerous. The dirty little secret is there is barely any place you can actually use these. Stores will soon clamp down and ban them and they work poorly outside.

    1. Outside, tiny rocks CONSTANTLY get up in and stop your wheel, making you go flying. You spend more time bracing for this and actually having fun. (on an off note: now that I’m older why is this knee scrape scarring instead of magically going away like they used to?)

    2. 46.394% of sidewalks have cracks too large for the wheels to go over. The ones that aren’t still destabilize you to an extent.

    3. You realize quickly how not smooth most surfaces. Some slow you down others are impossible.

    4. Stopping means changing into a run until you slow down.

  38. sp3nc3 says:

    Let me make it clear that I don’t condone any kind of child abuse, but every time I get cut off in the store by a kid in Heelys, it make me want to beat a biter down with an aluminum bat.

  39. Kyle says:

    @Kyle: I wish I could edit my comment. Anyways, I wanted to clarify that you don’t go flying every time a rock stops the wheel but you have to be paying close attention so that you can transition into a run and stop before falling on your face.

  40. lo_fro says:

    I wish I had heelies when I was 10. I would have glided all over the world!

    But I’ll be honest, anyone over the age of 10 wearing heelies just looks like a big dork wearing roller shoes. Really, they do. Like the kind of adultdork who wears Napoleon Dynamite shirts and red hightop chucks with shorts. I’m shaking my head just thinking about it.

    Here’s a death-trap I can get behind, and I can use them in the safety of my own livingroom:

  41. homersays says:

    Man, sometimes I am glad that I don’t have children yet. I see tons of kids wearing these here in NYC everyday and parents don’t even watch them either. I saw some kid walking his dog while on these things and he fell flat on his face when the dog took off.

  42. DashTheHand says:

    @ slaps@slapstick: I looked all over for them never finding anything over a size 9, then I finally found the motherload at Modell’s. My suggestion is that if you find them online, make sure the store has a good return/exchange policy because their sizes are really jacked. I usually wear a 11.5 and the same size in Heely’s for me was a 10.

  43. paco says:

    For the record, it’s the marketers I blame, and the parents who can’t say no to their kids.

    My daughter already talks about wanting to get a pair when she’s older. My hope is that they are no longer in fad-shion when one of her grandparents decides a pair of Heelies would be a great present–because I’ve already sworn not to get her a pair.

  44. zncjmom says:

    Those shoes just scream laziness to me. If God had intended us to roll everywhere he would have built rollers into our feet. If my boys every ask for those shoes….!!!

  45. Devika says:

    I’m an adult that owns a pair of these and likes them. They’re fun, as long as, just like with rollerskates, rollerblades, and skateboards, you’re aware of your surroundings and display some common courtesy to people around you. I hate it when I see kids plowing through crowded areas at top speeds on the things, practically running people down.

    You can step out of the roll pretty easily and quickly (unless you’re going really fast downhill, in which case it takes a few steps/jogs).

    @slapstick (and others) – they make Heelys up to a guy’s size 12. At the Nordstrom near me, they keep them (even adult sizes) in the kids shoe department.

  46. frowelishnu says:

    I own a pair of Heely’s (I’m 27). My wife got them for me from Zappos for Xmas.
    They can be dangerous – and I completely love them.
    Outside can be a challenge as Kyle noted. Parking lots are your best bet – dangerous because of cars.
    Inside, I love Costco, big aisles and smooth cement floors. Another bonus for adult beginners is using the cart to stabalize yourself at first.
    My 4 year old daughter wants a pair and I’ll probably get her some when her feet are large enough, my wife just likes to watch me make a fool out of myself.
    Oh, every kid (and some adults) that I roll by wants to get a pair too. These will be HUGE.

  47. Peeved Guy says:

    I hate these stupid things.
    I don’t care about the kid or me (I’m 6’2″ @ 250#, so the kid is going to get the worst of a collision with me), but the first time one of those knotheads runs into one of my kids, there will be hell to pay. More than once have my family and I been shopping and one of these idiot kids nearly knocked my 5 year old down without, I might ad, as so much as a glance back, let alone an “excuse me” or “sorry” or even a “bite me”. Ultimately, it is the parents who are at fault for raising such inconsiderate jerks.

  48. Youthier says:

    Why are we equating not wanting your kids to be jackasses on skates to being “overprotective”? My brother and I had dirtbikes and a trampoline (with no cage) and drove tractors on the farm but our mother would never have let us rollerskate in a grocery store. She wasn’t scared we would crack our heads open, she was considerate and teaching us to be the same.

  49. joopiter says:

    @missbrooke06: Well said. My mother was the same way. I wasn’t sheltered from getting hurt doing normal kid things. I wanted (and got sometimes) all the cool new fads, even the ones that could potentially be dangerous. I was, however, taught not to be a public nuisance. Stores and malls were designed for shopping, not to be a goddamned roller rink. I don’t blame the Heelys; I blame the parents who don’t know how to teach their children how to behave in public.

  50. Red_Eye says:

    This is why those shoes are grounds for removal from Disney World theme parks. They are according to the Disney cast member (employee) we spoke with last week banned from Disney property.

  51. kerry says:

    @paco: I’ve been seeing these on kids for about 8 years now. They’ll never go out of fad-shion.

  52. Jasmo says:

    whoa shit – kids are reckless and annoying? Is this a recent development?

  53. Trai_Dep says:

    Hmm. Still much safer than the ball-kicking contests (with elimination rounds!) that we’d have during middle school!

  54. cudthecrud says:

    I’ve got a pair (I’m 27). We found them at a skate shop in a mall; I think it was Journeys. I very much enjoy wearing them when I’m forced to go into the French Quarter. You wouldn’t think it, but the roads down there are surprisingly nice. And they’re wonderful for parking garages. They were great for mardi gras parades until the beads got too thick on the ground.

    To the other owners: you can use your heel as a brake if you stick that foot out farther, you don’t have to go into a run if you don’t want to. And in doing that you can also roll on one foot, using the brake for balance. And most sidewalks/bricks/whatever just require a bit more speed and you’ll roll right over the cracks.

  55. bbbici says:

    Any person or group of people who are not watching where they are going, crossing paths without looking, blocking paths, weaving erratically, stopping quickly in the middle of nowhere, standing in the middle of a path, whatever, is likely to get a sharp elbow or whack from my collapsible baton. Say a peep to me and out comes my pepper spray or worse.

    I am an equal opportunist lesson teacher. Cyclist, walker, wheelyer, very young or very old, dog, pregnant lady, etc., ther’re fair game for my discipline.

    I don’t care if you fly around on a jet pack, just do it in a predictable manner, in straight lines, be able to control yourself, keep to the right except to pass, and watch where you’re going/be aware of your surroundings, and i won’t say boo.

  56. Sam says:


    You beat me to it. I live an hour away from Orlando and frequent Disney World. Despite the fact that they are banned from the parks (again substantiated by a cast member, my sister-in-law), there is an absolute infestation. I really want a video of a kid eating one of those turkey legs they sell doing the happiest faceplant on earth.

  57. SaraAB87 says:

    This is a clear case of product mis-use. There is nothing wrong with the shoes, they were designed to be used as an alternative to a skateboard, therefore they should not be used where a skateboard shouldn’t be used. They should definitely be banned from malls, theme parks and anywhere where they would be a public hazard, basically if you wouldn’t use a skatebaord there, then don’t use the shoes there. Most amusement parks have banned these shoes from what I hear, and I suspect more bannings are to come as the lawsuits emerge. The shoes do come with warning labels and all kinds of warnings but no matter what leave it up to the people of America to find non-appropriate uses for the latest fad. They are designed for outdoor use and are designed to be worn with protective equipment such as a helmet, knee pads and elbow pads. I don’t think these shoes were designed to be daily, every-day wear shoes, and were designed to be more of a recreational sports shoe that you put on for a couple hours each week.

    The shoes should not be banned altogether and should not be banned from being sold in the USA or anything like that, and I am certaintly not for sheltering our kids and not letting them participate in sports such as this but there are appropriate uses for things and innappropriate uses for them, and these shoes were definitely not designed with the intent to be used how they are being used in society today. Maybe if the salesman would just give a stern speech to each person or parent buying these shoes then it would sink in or offer to sell them protective gear along with the shoes.

    The situation with these shoes was out of control after christmas here, but it seems to be getting better and more controlled and you only really see the occasional kid wearing them. I guess most kids have either forgotten about them, or just given up on them. I hear a lot of kids give up on them after a couple days of their feet killing them from the shoes so thats not surprising.

    The injury number actually seems kind of low, I consider “roller shoes” a sport such as skateboarding so I am sure the injuries from the shoes are comparable to other sports kids participate in, however I do wonder if there are long-term effects from the innapropriate every day use of these shoes on children’s growing feet. Will kids develop foot problems early on in life if they spend a couple years wearing these shoes daily??

  58. suburbancowboy says:

    There is a time and a place for everything.

    I was really into Inline Skating when I was in my late teens, but I wouldn’t go into stores with my skates on.

    Kids where these things everywhere, and the parents never says damn thing. I guarantee you, if some kid comes into my store with those on and falls and gets hurt, the parents won’t hesitate in trying to sue me.

  59. AcidReign says:

    …..Skating burns calories. Anything that gets them away from the TV or the X-box…

    …..My kids had these about 5 years ago. Wisely, my daughter gave hers up pretty quickly. Skating is NOT one of her talents. My son was pretty amazing on them. No, we didn’t let them run through the mall with the things on. I tried my daughter’s out, and it was awkward. I tend to lean forward from years of inline skates, and I wouldn’t roll.

    …..The biggest problem we had with the shoes was that the wheel would break before the shoe wore out. They are certainly safer than real skates or a skateboard. For one thing, it’s a lot easier for a novice to stop.

    …..Don’t ask how I know this, but the best way to trip an obnoxious, skating little punk, is by pretending to not be paying attention to them. Look the other way, casually stick a heel out, then act stunned, surprised and injured while the kid crashes headfirst into a drink display. Whatever you do, repress that snicker. Not even a smile.

  60. Wormfather says:

    @zncjmom: “And if god intended us to roll around everywhere he would have…”

    Damn these planes, trains and automobiles, blasphamy!

  61. guroth says:

    Allowing children to roll around with these inside stores is the same as, if not worse than, letting your kids RUN around a store.

    When kids run around a store they are usually not looking where they are going and cannot stop themselves quick enough if they have to, which leads to running into merchandise, customers, or employees.

    It all boils down to bad parenting. Teach your kids how to behave in public. Unfortunately millions of parents in America are HORRIBLE parents and that is why we have so many stupid laws, to basically scare parents into being more responsible for their children.

  62. FLConsumer says:

    Definitely the parents’ faults on this one. I’ve never tried the product, but I’ve had several kids run into me and patrons at my workplace. I’ve managed to get even ‘though — I throw pennies out in front of them. “oops”.

  63. Youthier says:

    @Sam: I would rather watch a kid do a faceplant while eating one of those turkey legs myself. Yum…

  64. oldhat says:

    Blah blah blah

    To hell with all you uptight jerks whining about those darn kids and their bicycles/rollerskates/skateboards/heelys/whatever is next.

    Before that it was, damn you kids for running around all the time!

    Same hypocrites whining about kids watch too much tv/use computer/play video games.

    So let me speak for the youth, if I may: FUCK YOU, OLD BAG!

    We all have enough issues…this don’t make the cut.

  65. oldhat says:

    Oh, and to the others who are talking about tripping the kids:

    Nice attitude, sounds like hoodlums talking about kicking the canes out from old ladies.

    I hope you try it and get your ass kicked. Then arrested. Then sued. Then die of some terrible disease that afflicts hypocrites.

    That is all.

  66. squidbrain says:

    Funny, every time I see some inconsiderate little brat rolling around on these I think

    1. Why didn’t we have these when I was a kid?
    2. Do they come in my size?

  67. smallestmills says:

    I work in a store with a lot of glassware and wine. I cannot wait for the day that some kid crashes into a wall of glass and dies on those things. It may be from all the small pebbles I threw on the floor so they’d crash. That being said, I must admit, I love those things.
    1. It’s always funny when a kid falls. Always.
    2. Jealousy. I want a pair, but can’t afford them, and I’m a klutz with bad karma. The second I put them on at work…boom, right into the wall of glassware.

  68. samurailynn says:

    Ban Heelys from stores? Nah… I think they should just ban kids from stores. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve almost been run over/into by a kid in a store that wasn’t wearing Heelys.

  69. kerry says:

    @oldhat: I’m pretty sure there aren’t a lot of old ladies out there running into store displays, clipping folks on the sidewalk and rolling into oncoming traffic. If these kids aren’t paying attention to my foot sticking out, they deserve to trip over it.

  70. SadSam says:

    I really don’t have a strong opinion on roller skate shoes. I do think its a shame that kids don’t seem to get to have much fun these days. Almost all play is supervised and structured. Kids don’t seem to have the opportunities to learn lessons and boundaries by trying something out, having a bad experience and learning from same.

    There has been a recent, interesting series on NPR regarding the .com generation or the millenial generation and the issues with that group entering the work force. I only caught the first two episodes but my basic understanding was that these early 20 somethings need to have constant positive feedback (one company is handing out daily awards) in order to produce work product. I’m sure that’s not true for all, but it seems like our country is in a current pattern of raising self centered egomaniacs and that can’t be good.

  71. DTWD says:

    I’ve only ever seen a teenager in the mall and a child in Walmart skating in Heely’s. I want to get some as well, I always enjoyed “driving” the shopping cart.

  72. legerdemain says:

    I’m 31. I’m jealous of the kids who have these. I want a pair of my own. One day in the near future, you’ll see me flying through Target.

    Mark my words!

  73. Havok154 says:

    I don’t hate the shoes, just the obnoxious brats that I usually see on them. I’ve seen kids that fly around stores making sure they avoid people and keep an eye out. I sort of envy them. Then there are those kids that fly around, running into what ever is close to stop. Usually me, my shopping cart, or 6 inches to the right of me as they slam into the shelf because they have no freaking clue how to stop or control their own speed.

  74. lihtox says:

    @madktdisease: a kid on the south shore of MA died last year when he rolled into traffic without looking.

    And I’m sure a kid died last year by chasing a ball out of his yard into traffic without looking. Moron parents, letting children play in the yard! I’d like some actual data, not anecdotes.

    I would sort of like a pair myself, and I now realize why: I’ve never been able to roller skate because I hate how out of control it makes me feel to be on wheels the entire time. If I could skate around on my heels, and transition back to walking just by leaning forward when I feel unstable, that would be a lot of fun. I wonder if there are rinks which allow or even rent these shoes?

    And there have been many times when I had to walk some distance through boring scenery and thought, “Boy, I wish I had some sort of wheeled vehicle right about now, that I wouldn’t have to carry around or park when I wasn’t using it.”

  75. Lee2706 says:

    These damn things are pretty cool, but like anything, there’s a place for them. Whipping around a store is not that place – might as well let people shop in rollerblades, roller skates, and skateboards.

    Do what any sensible person would do: trespass into that old Woolworth’s they’re converting to a Target or similar and have at it on the smooth floor. Not that I’ve done that or anything.

    What worries me is the odd gait I see on the kids when they walk. They end up walking on their tippy-toes instead of the normal “heel strikes ground first.” I am not an expert, but human feet aren’t designed to walk that way. A longitudinal study on these Heeley-ed children would be interesting.

  76. paco says:

    @kerry: I can hope…

  77. ahwannabe says:

    wow, so far we’ve had the nun from The Blues Brothers, the little girls from The Shining, Tootie from The Facts of Life, and the platform shoe roller bandits from CHiPs. This thread is pushing all my nostalgia buttons.

  78. Mr. Gunn says:

    cudthecrud makes me jealous. I want some.

  79. maidus says:

    Do me a favor and stop “Thinking for the children” rather than “Thinking of the Children”. The shoes are fun and part of being a kid is to fall, have accidents, break a leg, an arm, whatever. I had a skateboard and a bike growing up and I rode in traffic, on the sidewalk, in fact, anywhere. Granted, I almost got hit sometimes but that was part of the EXCITEMENT of being a kid.

    Tell me, do you have statistics on how many bicycle injuries ended up in the hospital last year? How about in-line skates? How about quad-skates? Have you checked on the number of ER visits due to after-school fights as well? Maybe we should escort kids home from school because they may slip and fall getting on the bus. Come on, grow up a little and let kids be kids. Maybe people are freaking out about these “heelies” because their old and they just “don’t get it”. Deal with it, old fogies!

  80. aka Cat says:

    Every kid I’ve seen wearing roller shoes seemed to be both coordinated, and aware of the other people around them.

    Which is more than I can say for a lot of the kids around here.

    Unfortunately for the kids in my neighborhood, a bunch of fogies just pressured the HOA into banning roller skates and skateboards.

  81. valkin says:

    We should jump on this as adults and uses these in stores. Isn’t this what everybody wanted from “the future?” Here’s the ability to get places quickly, to skate or walk when we want to without changing shoes.

    I don’t want these banned. If kids are flying into displays or adults, it’s an issue of the parent’s responsibility to teach their child how to behave. Why punish everyone for the actions of a few?

  82. cudthecrud says:

    I wear mine in stores. I like rolling in Walmart.

  83. Icithis says:

    To everyone commenting against the users of these because they are annoying; I seriously hope whatever you enjoy in life is immediately halted the moment you annoy someone with it, regardless of its validity. Second, the comment about national obesity and the problem with these requiring children not to walk; complete ignorance would be a compliment. The amount of work it takes to use these properly is beyond your comprehension. I think there’s way too much bandwagon hopping here, and the crowd mentality is diverting from any rational thought, where the child’s early life experience is given some consideration outside of your ‘it mildly inconvenienced me, so I tripped him flat on his face hahaha I’m so cool’ way of thinking.

  84. buck09 says:

    If I were a kid, I totally would have a pair of these. The main problem, as I see it, is the lack of grinding capability. If someone were to integrate these wheelie shoes with Soaps shoes That would totally rock.

    Frankly, I think all these watch out-for-grandma faux concern is simply jealousy for not having maximized the danger/fun potential of their childhood.

  85. momofsix says:

    I have 6 kids and only my 9 year old really wears her healys – she is healthy and quite thin. I always tell her to look before she skates and if a store is crowded, she’s not allowed to skate.

    People just need to be more considerate of one another regardless of their age. Sometimes I wonder if the adults in this world realize that they were once kids, too.

    As time goes on, I see more signs going up not allowing kids to wear their skates. It saddens me that we all just can’t ‘do the right thing’ and get along. As my best friend always says, ‘the many suffer for the few’. I have never been run over by any of these skaters (I admire how they can do it with such grace) and I happily see them all over the place.

    Remember: we were once kids, too. Think back to what YOU did when you were a kid. Amazing how you adults think you were the perfect CHILD and probably you are horrible adults, too!

  86. cudthecrud says:

    @ buck09: mine have grind plates.