30 Days of a Thankful Heart {Day 17} Roller Derby

18 Nov

I think I am in love…with roller derby and the awesomeness that are roller girls!

Photo courtesy of True Grit Roller Derby

A little over two years ago I was catching up on my Netflix movie list and I received Whip It in the mail.  I’d heard of roller derby before, but this movie put a whole new spin on it. Plus I ❤ me some Ellen Page (of Juno fame.) I was so intrigued!

I spent hours Googling roller derby and checking to see if there were any local teams.  There were! I asked The Hubs what he thought of the idea of me as a roller derby girl were.  He smiled and kind of laughed, and said, “You’d be good.  What about softball?”

Hmmm.  Was that a compliment or a diversion?

The idea and fascination remained just a lovely, awesome dream.  We were busy living life, getting adjusted to a new place, first ministry appointment, and our rapidly growing 9 month old.

But oh how dreams cling to the soul…Every once in awhile I would come across something derby related and my heart would flutter.

Well, two years, two jobs, and one baby later, I gave that dream some wings, or skates, rather!

I was up late last Saturday (kind of a habit) and I started looking for Fort Smith area derby teams, and I found one!

The River Valley Roller Girls…*sigh* I’m already Roller Derby crushin’ because these girls kick some serious booty!

Courtesy River Valley Roller Girls

Oh, I stalked their webpage and their Facebook page.  I saw that they had Fresh Meat Sessions, recruiting for new skaters, and something clicked.

I knew this was the time.

Now or never.

Either jump in or give it up.

I leaped.

I shot an email to see if I could join the already in progress, Fresh Meat Sessions, and was invited to show up and check things out.

Oh I did!  My friend even thought I was joking until I called her on the way to practice this past Thursday.

No joke ladies and gentleman, I am head over wheels for roller derby, and after only one practice.

I didn’t even do more than gear up and get used to being on skates after 5 years.

Derby Virgin

I kept to the sides and watched these amazing girls in action.

Seeing them line up and do drills and then scrimmage felt like home to my team-sport heart.  Memories of years and years of softball and basketball practices flooded over me and I wanted so badly to get in the midst of the action.  I could feel my body yearning to participate, but I will have to wait.

Practices are on hold until after Thanksgiving.  Probably good timing so this new idea can sink into my slow-decision making Hubs’ brain.

Me?  In my mind I am geared up and ready to go.

Put me in coach!

I’ve scoured skates, equipment, rules, videos, and cannot get enough of derby.

Did I mention it burns an insane amount of calories?  Seriously, speed skating can burn over 600 calories an hour for someone my size!  It is a great whole-body and cardio work-out.  Bonus!

The only downside so far has been the cost to get in the game.  The equipment is pricey and there are monthly dues.

A Roller Girl and Her Gear
Photo courtesy Frank Mullen / The Atlanta Rollergirls

But all good things come at a cost, right?!

Here’s to hoping we can figure something out because my heart will be broken if I can’t become a roller girl soon.

Anyone want to sponsor me? No, seriously!  I’m worth it!

Already been playing around with derby names:

Crimson & CreamHer

Tenacious Tiger

BoomHer Sooner

Everett After You

It’s hard finding a cool, original name that isn’t already registered.  Any suggestions?

I am incredibly grateful to have had the courage to try something new.  I’m putting myself out there and daring to dream that I can become as awesome at roller derby as the veterans I was honored to watch.  Roller Derby will be a challenge but one I am ready to take on with all the passion, dedication, and enthusiasm that I can rally.

Any of you roller derby enthusiasts?  Do you play?  What’s your take on the sport’s come-back and re-invention?


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