Give you a reason to join Roller Derby … i’ll give you bloody 10!!!

1. Fitness. We all eat one too many pies – and are all guilty of skipping out on the gym (every day) and so why would you not want to lose weight, tone those muscles, find that core … potentially even find those muscles you weren’t even sure you had!! And Derby is all about pushing yourself and, if like me… picking yourself up off the floor, numerous amounts of time in a 2 hour session really gets those muscles aching. With the usual planking regime and A+ core exercises that have been provided by members of the league, it is always exercise time … in a fun way!! Sometimes it’s surprising just how much exercise you’ve done without realising it … until the next day of course when you wake up and can’t move any of your body from the neck down!

2. Extra-curricular activity. It’s always good to have something to do – whether it’s going to the gym, tennis, badminton (urrrgh) etc etc … well it’s always good to have a ‘release’ and something to look forward to. For me, Derby is exactly this. My reward at the end of a long day – where you leave your day behind and get totally lost in the moment.

3. Being the person you want to be. Whether it’s on the track, in a bout or simply at training. It’s a chance to really be who you want to be, for some that’s wearing a cape whilst whizzing round the track, for other’s about jumping extraordinary distances that cannot be measured by us mere mortals, or just simply wanting to be the big mouth as that’s not normally who you are *shy’s away knowing everyone knows I am most certainly NOT talking about myself on this last one!!*

4. People skills. All of us occasionally struggle with our communication skills … which is something that Derby will knock right into you!! Communication is essential not only on the track but off the track too. And definitely pushes you to work on communication effectively with a wide range of people you may not normally come into contact with.

5. Pride. I have never had a prouder moment than when the final whistle went on S.W.A.T’s debut bout. Yes we had won (which obviously was an incredible rush) … but the sea of shiny purple hynies that piled in for a mass hug at the end was a feeling that I’ve never experienced. I was proud of everyone who had helped, played, been there at training or were involved in any way. We were a team, and one I was as proud as punch to be a part of.

6. Friends that become family. As many of you know that there is a tradition among many Derby girls of Derby marriages. Last December I was fortunate enough to have the pleasure … nay privilege, of marrying my Derby Wife. And after a long and happy two and a half months we decided to adopt a Derby daughter. I know that without a doubt they have my back both on and off the track (normally because it’s them plotting against me) But without them … I’d be truly lost.

7. Groping. This is just an added bonus. On many occasions there will be ‘incidents’ in which the front area is attacked and used like a climbing wall … this is either optional or ‘accidental’ … but all perks of the game! *looks at certain members of the team casually knowing they are very aware of who they are*

8. Merchandise. Because everyone wants to buy kickass tee shirts

9. Road trips. Going to watch other teams and look for tactics, scope the opposition and learn as much as you can is a large part of Derby and so road trips are essential. The best way of doing this is to car share and eat plenty of sweets to keep you going on the long journey.

10. Camaraderie. Because we’re all frickin’ awesome and support one another. Whether it’s shouting (or chasing with track pieces in recent events!!) for people in support to get them through their dreaded 25 in 5. Letting someone know you’re thinking of them after a bad day. All I can say is it really is frickin Ace! Being surrounded by THE most amazing people I’ve ever had the pleasure to come across. So get your butt off the sofa. Put down the biscuits … and come down for some skating goodness. Guaranteed you will fall in love with not only the sport … but the people too.

Love a very ‘cheesy’ and sentimental S.Mouse xx

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