Thinking of joining us for roller derby in our fresh meat intake this Sunday, Tuesday or next Sunday, but not quite sure about it yet? Here are some answers to stuff we hear a lot about starting roller derby!

I can’t skate.
We’ll teach you. However long it takes, we’ll teach you.

I’m too old for roller derby.
Probably not. We have people from age 19 to 50-something in the league and there’s no upper limit.

I’m too fat/skinny/tall/short for roller derby.
We don’t have a size or weight limit in either direction. If you’re willing to strap on skates, we’ll train you no matter your size or shape. There’s room for all bodies in roller derby.

I’m too unfit for roller derby.
It’s ok. We’ll train you up. And no one will yell at you if you can’t do a push-up or skate for more than a few minutes; you’ll find your abilities get better each time you come to training. Some extra training outside of derby is highly recommended, but you can do simple exercises at home that will help you be even more awesome on skates. If you have any health conditions or concerns, talk to your doctor, physiotherapist, etc.

I don’t have good balance.
If you can stand up and walk around without falling over, you can develop the skills to do it on skates. Sure, some people are zooming around three minutes after putting on skates for the first time, but our trainers will help you learn all the skills you need to skate like a derby star. We believe in you!

I don’t have time.
Fresh meat training is two two-hour sessions per week. The attendance requirements take into account that people do have a life outside of derby and sometimes it gets in the way. We also encourage our members to volunteer to help keep the league running but this can be as simple as an extra hour here and there to help run a scrimmage.

You have a men’s derby team but I’m a woman and don’t want to do contact sports with men (or vice versa).
We understand completely. No one is forced to participate in contact training, scrimmages or bouts with the opposite gender if they don’t want, no questions asked. We check at every training session just to be sure.

I don’t want to get injured!
Injury is a risk in any physical activity. Safety is important and it’s compulsory to wear a helmet, mouth guard, wrist guards, elbow pads and knee pads. Our referees check that this gear is properly worn at the start of every practice and bout. Some people also wear tailbone/hip protectors or shin guards. We teach you how to fall to minimise the chance of injury and we have people with first aid qualifications at every session. Your membership fee also includes injury insurance via Skate Australia.

I’d like to skate but I don’t want to/can’t do contact.
We’d love to have you as a referee! Referees train on skates with the rest of the league, and while most participate in contact drills (it can help you understand the game better), it’s not compulsory for referee training.

I just don’t think skating’s for me but I want to be involved in roller derby somehow.
There are lots of opportunities to help out. We rely on volunteers to keep the league running and to make bouts happen. We always need people to be non-skating officials (NSOs), for example penalty box timers and score trackers. There are other ways to help too, such as with fundraising events. Get in contact with us and see what there is!