|A surf scoter coming in from kevinkarlsonphotography.com|
I think about that a lot with derby. Derby done with skill is beautiful, but there is never the intent to be beautiful. If you focus on trying to skate gracefully, or are too conscious of how you might look, somebody’s going knock you on your ass. I’ve been helping with a beginner skating class, and over and over again when I’m trying to break down a skill or am speaking about skating form, the words I use are: efficient, power, stabile, strong, force.
Next month is the one year anniversary of the start of Juneau Rollergirls (if you count from the first day we actually skated). July 2nd, we’ll have our very first bout, a local event featuring all local skaters.
|Gate City Roller Girl doing a two-knee slide from rashphoto.blogspot.com|
Our first practices consisted of us skating around in circles, attempting to stop, and not really knowing how to start learning the game. Fast forward a year and our practices are highly structured, run by two dedicated coaches and a team of refs. We’re skating hard, working hard, and when I sit on the team bench during a scrimmage and watch the jam, I’m not watching a bunch of ladies trying to figure out what the heck is going on with their skates, I’m watching roller derby.
I’m so thankful to spend a couple of hours every week with a group of ladies who can sing through their pain and even in the midst of trying to knock each other down, give advice to their teammates on how to stay standing.