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Rollerblade® and Zephyr Join Forces
In December of 2004 Zephyr Inline Skate Tours and the
Rollerblade® skate company
signed a cooperative agreement to organize a series
of camps for inline skating beginners, and also to offer free inline skating lessons
in order to increase participation in the sport. Ongoing projects
that will continue in 2005 include Zephyr's
online marathon training program
and Rollerblade's "Skate in School®" program.
ROLLERBLADE® AND ZEPHYR JOIN FORCES
The largest skate manufacturer in the world is joining forces with one of
inline skating’s most dynamic small companies. Rollerblade®, founded in
1980 as the originator of modern-day inline skating, has signed a cooperation
agreement with Zephyr Inline Skate Tours, the world’s first skate touring company.
"What can I say?" says Zephyr owner Allan Wright. "We are very excited
to be working with Rollerblade®. They are the company that is making things
happen in the inline industry."
The same could be said of Zephyr. The cross-promotional agreement between
the two companies will focus on two joint projects: Camp Rollerblade® and
FreeSkateLesson.com. In addition, Rollerblade will continue to run its
Skate in School® program while Zephyr will continue to operation
Camp Rollerblade: Skate Camp for Adults
Perhaps the largest venture to come out of the Rollerblade-Zephyr agreement
is the new Camp Rollerblade. In the late 1990s, a "Camp Rollerblade" existed
in the Californian city of Santa Rosa. Run by Jill Schultz, that Camp
Rollerblade taught a variety of inline skills - vert ramps, hockey,
speed skating, etc - over several days. Unfortunately, the Camp closed
its doors in 2000.
The new Camp Rollerblade is much more focused: it teaches adult beginners
how to skate recreationally. Offering three dates in 2005 (two on Hilton
Head Island off South Carolina and one in Southern Minnesota), the five-day
Camps include hotel lodging, restaurant meals, local transportation, and
expert skating instruction. Camp Rollerblade is based on the skate camps
run by Zephyr since 2000.
"We know people are scared going in", says Wright. "Participants think
they are too old, not coordinated enough, or simply not ready for five
days of instruction. By the end of five days of fun and learning,
however, most people wish the Camp was longer."
CampRollerblade.com for more details.
Zephyr’s owner Wright started the Free Skate Lesson program in 2003 with the
help of three other certified instructors. The concept is simple. Recruit
skating instructors to give away free lessons to encourage more people to
take up the sport and stick to it.
Over two years, the Free Skate Lesson program received thousands of lesson
requests. With the addition of Rollerblade as a prime sponsor this year,
however, the program has made a significant change. Instead of offering
lessons all over America by almost one hundred instructors, the program
has consolidated to work only with top skate schools in eight large
"In past years we tried to get national exposure for the program but didn't
have national coverage by our instructors", says Wright. "In 2005, we will
be able to focus our publicity efforts on the eight cities involved in the
Free Skate Lesson program."
While lessons can be given at all skill levels, the program is mostly
tailored to beginners. Free lessons consist of a 45-minute group session.
People interested in the program can sign up for a free lesson online at
Skate in School®
Roller blade's Skate in School® is a program that provides inline skates
and an instructional curriculum for schools. Developed in conjunction
with the National Association for Sport and Physical Education, the
program is at the forefront of new PE courses designed to both
educate and provide life-long skills.
Having served more than one million students in 750 schools, the Skate in
School ® program is probably one of the most successful programs in the
inline industry. Schools (elementary through high school) purchase a
reduced-price "fleet" of Rollerblade skates along with the Skate in
School ® curriculum. Students are taught by their regular PE teachers,
who can receive professional instruction themselves through the program.
For more information, visit
Zephyr Inline Skate Tours created MarathonSkating.com as the world’s first
online marathon training program for inline skaters. The six-week course
features content in five areas: skating technique, training programs,
nutrition & hydration, strength & stretching, and marathon secrets.
The program costs $70 but is free in 2005 to participants of the three
largest US marathons: Northshore, Saint Paul, and Disney.
"Marathons are one of the biggest trends in the inline skating world but
there is little training information out there", says Zephyr’s Wright.
"MarathonSkating.com provides that information." Started in 2003, in two
years the program has served 1,244 skaters, making it the largest inline
skating training program in the country. For more information or to sign
About Zephyr Inline Skate Tours
Zephyr Inline Skate Tours is a Montana-based company that has been
running skate tours since 1997. In 2005, the company has 17 skating,
biking, hiking, and multi-sport tours on its schedule.
ZephyrAdventures.com for more information. Rollerblade®,
the world’s largest inline skating manufacturer, can be found on
the web at
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