Archive for July, 2010


So much of roller derby is about staying hyper-vigilant while on your feet: looking all around to see where your jammer is, where the other jammer is, where the edges of the track are, where the pack is, and where you are in relation to the pack. So much of the skating has to be unconscious, without thinking. Jammer on the outside, move over there now. Gap forming, close it up. It’s not a great activity to do when you’re not feeling well (as a few of our girls noted last night), nor when you have lots of other things on your mind. Without complete attention to everything that’s going on around you, you could get seriously hurt out there.

Last night we did some light pack work — my first, actually — and it was pretty awesome. I love skating, but working together with a common purpose to STOP THAT JAMMER FROM GETTING BY is thrilling. As is knocking your coach out of the track. 🙂


Haz Skates, Will Travel

Frustrated with my own indecisiveness in the face of unlimited online skate & gear suppliers, I took a road trip to a little skate shop about 3 1/2 hrs away yesterday to stock up. Yes, it took a whole tank of gas, but being able to try things on made it (and the lost time) worth it.

The shop is tiny, set in a strip mall near the rink, on the edge of Bloomington, IN, but it’s well-stocked for derby girls. In fact, the guy who helped me said they’re absolutely gobsmacked by the resurgence in derby, which has been responsible for keeping their shop open over the last couple of years. With leagues now in Indianapolis, Bloomington, Lafayette, Ft. Wayne, Columbus (IN), and girls occasionally coming from as far away as Champaign (I wasn’t the first), they have a steady stream of business both for purchase and repairs.

My loot:
Riedell R3 skates with Radar Cayman wheels & ABEC-5 bearings
Extra set of wheels & bearings for outdoor skating: purple Radar Zen (85A) w/ ABEC-5 bearings
Triple-8 knee pads
187 elbow pads
Triple-8 wrist protectors
Plus a set of purple & grey skull laces 🙂


All for just over $200! I’m grateful for not having been talked up to the Vixen skate, even though I had my eye on it. If I’m still doing this next spring, I can always move up – but the R3s are perfectly good recreational skates, and didn’t break the bank.

CAN. NOT. WAIT. to get these outside!!

Derby Girl?

sk8r grrl?, originally uploaded by chickeninthewoods.

Well, maybe not yet. But getting there. This was the FIRST PRACTICE. Very tiring, very fun. I lasted through just about everything, just stopping a couple times to adjust skates and catch a breath. But all in all, a very successful first night! The girls are great — lots who are very new to this as well — and I was pleasantly surprised to feel like I could catch up pretty quickly. At least my general skating skills are ok. Next up, skates of my very own, and pads as well. The rentals are not great, and as much as I sweat in them, I don’t really want to think about how many people used them before me, ew.