Roller Derby

Discussion in 'Sports & Recreation' started by Ken Anderson, Jun 3, 2018.

  1. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    Women's roller derby, now that was a sport worth watching. Men's roller derby, not so much. Some of those women were vicious.

    roller-derby2.jpg roller-derby3.jpg roller-derby-1.jpg
     
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  2. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    Ive seen it a few times...tough women!!

    I liked roller skating but was a better ice skater. One thing I do miss...skating but now I'm afraid of a fall and breaking all my bones or even one bone. :)

    I wasn't Olympic material but pretty good.

    Always had to wear ankle supports though inside my skates. Ankles are too thin, even now I can put my fingers around them just like my wrist.
     
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  3. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    I grew up in Michigan but never learned to ice skate. As for roller skating, well we barely had any paved roads, let alone sidewalks or roller skating rinks.
     
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  4. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    I had the at home roller skates that you put on your shoes but Pittsburgh was pretty hilly for skating.

    Every Saturday though there was a bus that would take us to a roller rink in Bethel Park. This was in my preteen years...10-13.

    That's where we went hoping a boy would ask us to skate in the "couples" skate.
     
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  5. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    Roller derbies were an extension of the dance marathons and walkathons of Great Depression. In the 1930s a walkathon promoter, Leo Alexander Seltzer, realized that the public was looking for something racier. Noting a story about roller skating as a leading participation sport, Seltzer launched the first roller derby in 1935 in the 12,000 seat Chicago Coliseum. Basically, it was a roller skating race. As more contests were held, more rules were added, even by spectators and sports writers.

    Eventually, speed became less of a factor in roller derbies, and they became something akin to brutal free-for-alls. Opposing teams of five women and five men alternated in competition on a banked oval track during eight 12-minute periods. Only two players in each unit, known as jammers, were eligible to score, while streaking past members of the opposing team, while other players on the team acted as blockers, and one pivot-person.

    Roller skating stars could earn as much as $40,000 a year if they could remain uninjured, but injuries were common and included everything from minor bruises and friction burns to a fractured pelvis and brain injuries. At its wildest, roller derby fans would batter one another and even the skaters, but most people agreed that the women skaters were rougher, meaner, and more vicious than the men. They were also more likely to continue skating on injuries that would send their male counterparts to the hospital. Some skaters continued to play into five months of pregnancy. In some games, male skaters were allowed to fill in for injured female skaters, and their female opponents beat them up pretty badly.

    Interest in the game diminished rapidly as regulators took steps to make it safer.
     
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    Last edited: Jun 3, 2018
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  6. Don Alaska

    Don Alaska Well-Known Member
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    I have two daughters who picked up roller derby as a form of year-round exercise. They were both pretty competitive, but both got injured and I think have pretty much retired from the sport, although I think they are both coaching now. They enjoyed it while they were doing it and some of their family members also played. One of the husbands plays very well and is on a travelling team--he has been to London and Santiago, Chile in competitions. They only do flat track skating though, so it is not what you have seen on TV, and the banked ovals were done away with long ago for men, I think, as too vicious, although the women get pretty bad, too. It does take a while to figure out the rules, too.
     
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  7. Tim Burr

    Tim Burr Very Well-Known Member
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    We have a ladies team here, The Nashville Rollergirls.
    I have yet to make any of their games, but my youngest son has been.
    I love the names of some of the girls...

    'Acute Angel'
    'Deathalopod'
    'Electra Cal'
    'Ruff Edges'
    and my personal favorite name,
    'Nancy Drew Blood'

    If I remember correctly, Roller Derby and Bowling were shown on Sundays, back in the day.
     
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  8. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    Yes, I have heard that there has been an upsurge of interest in roller derbies.
     
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  9. Von Jones

    Von Jones Veteran Member
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    I enjoyed watching roller derby. I don't know why though. I was maybe ten years old or a little older and very shy.
     
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  10. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    That was a big hit in my family, when I was a kid. Everyone watched, except for my mother.
     
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