There is often confusion between the Radius of Hollow of a skate blade and the profile (also known as the ‘rocker’ or ‘contour’). This confusion is understandable because both terms use the radius of a circle as their measurement. When referring to the Radius of Hollow (the depth of the cut in the blade), the measurement is in inches. When referring to the profile of the skate blade, the measurement is in feet.
A profile represents the length of the skate blade (from heel to toe) as part of a larger circle. The most common sizes are a 9-foot radius, an 11-foot radius and a 13-foot radius, although there are additional profile options available. With a smaller profile (9 ft), less of the skate blade comes in contact with the ice. With a larger profile (13 ft), more of the skate blade comes in contact with the ice. Both have their pros and cons and that is why it is important for each individual player to identify which profile is best for them. Generally speaking, a smaller profile is better for agility and maneuverability and a larger profile is better for speed.