Rollerblading used to be really popular and in some places it still is. Glasgow is not renowned for its rollerblading population though there are a few who still enjoy the freedom and excitement that it brings. The ability to go where you want, when you want without a care in the world can be exhilarating. This man was skating through Glasgow City Centre on his way to who knows where when he came towards me. The concentration on his face made the temptation to take the photograph too much.
Rollerblade is a brand of inline skates owned by Nordica, part of the Tecnica Group of Giavera del Montello, Treviso, Italy.
The company was started by Scott Olson (b. 1960) and Brennan Olson (b. 1964) in Minneapolis as Ole’s Innovative Sports; when they sold the company, it became Rollerblade, Inc. and has changed hands over time between Nordica, Benetton Group and Tecnica.
Even though the long established Roces company was the first to manufacture in-line skates in 1981, their distribution was limited to Italy and Central Europe for the first few years. For the first few years after Rollerblade was developed, Rollerblade, Inc. were the only manufacturer of in-line skates that had worldwide distribution. This allowed Rollerblade, Inc. to capitalize and grab a huge percentage of the world market share and almost total dominance of the North American market with their aggressive advertising campaigns and sponsored in-line-only sporting events.
Rollerblade, Inc. manufactures different types of skates, such as those for aggressive skating, fitness, or recreational use with removable “walkable” liners, as well as adjustable skates for younger bladers.