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We all know that strapping on a pair of rollerskates is guaranteed to make you smile. But we’re going deeper than that. We’re building a bad-ass community of empowered women on wheels. We’re rolling deep.
We’re empowering women through fitness, fun & sisterhood to be big and take up space. On their skates, in life.
We’re encouraging women of all ages to learn new skills, be OK with failing but mostly – to get back up again.
We’re showing women how we can achieve so much more together, through collaboration, through teamwork.
We’re bringing together women of all ages, skill levels, economic status, personal and gender expression.
We’re here for everyone who is female (cis or trans), femme or non-binary and wants to kick ass and have some fun.
We’re building strong, fair and empathetic leaders because we know that strong, confident women can change the world.
“Women are about more than Tight Bums and Flat Tums and we believe Roller Skating is the Answer.”
We believe that the traditional women’s fitness industry has failed. Its extreme ideal of physical beauty is uninspiring, unattainable and chronically unhealthy. Despite the explosion in gym membership and fitness options in the last 15 years, close to 90% of adult women report that they are unhappy with their physical appearance, with many worrying about their size and shape on a daily basis.
In the sports arena women fare even worse. 84% of adult women do not play on a sports team or participate in an organized sport. Before they even reach adulthood, teenage girls are dropping out of sports at 6 x the rate of boys. In comparison, 94% of women who hold elusive C-suite level positions have played on competitive sports teams.
This has to change. We need to change the narrative around women’s bodies and physical capabilities. Around traditional roles & responsibilities, female-leadership and body-confidence. Around women, power and sports.
At Rolla Skate Club we are creating a global movement to empower women. And we’re using roller skates to do it. We want women to be as powerful in their life, community and business as they are on their roller skates. We want them to find the beauty in what their body can do and how it feels, not what it looks like, and use that to strengthen each other.
So grab your skates and come join us!
From an early age Lucy was drawn to a life on eight wheels. “Growing up in London, England I was a lot smaller than other kids my age so I was teased quite a bit at school. To me, being on skates was a way to escape that negativity and it was something physical I could be good at regardless of my size.”
Fast forward 10 years to Vancouver, Canada and Lucy was struggling to make meaningful connections in her new city. “You get to a certain age and everyone already has their ‘groups,’ the people they hang out with. I didn’t really connect with the people I was working with so as a new immigrant and a woman in my mid-twenties I was definitely searching for like-minded people. I spent a lot of time skating round the seawall on my own!”
It was during one of those skates that Lucy stumbled across the newly-formed Terminal City Rollergirls, one of the first roller derby leagues in North America. “From the very first meeting I was blown away! They were this awe-inspiring group of fearless women, doing a crazy new sport and building an incredible world-wide community. I’d finally found a place where I felt like I fit in.” Lucy joined up on the spot, took on the derby name Luludemon and went on to compete with Team Canada at the first Roller Derby World Cup.
“Being on roller-skates makes me feel like a super-hero! It has brought so many incredible, inspiring people into my life and made me the fittest I’ve ever been at age 35. Skating reminds me that it doesn’t matter how many times I fall down, because I can always find a way to get back up again.”
Being active has been Carla’s passion since her days of ballet and field hockey as a child. “At University I tried out for the rowing team on a whim. Turns out I loved the camaraderie of the team, and how we had to overcome our physical barriers every single day at practice, together.” But eventually a serious back injury and demanding course load in architecture school meant the end of rowing.
Jump ahead to living in Boston in her twenties. Carla saw a flyer for the Team In Training running charity. “I like a challenge…” she thought, and (not a natural runner) soon found herself training for a marathon, just to see if she could. “Along the way I fell in with a kick-ass group of like-minded women who were also trying something new. Hundreds of hours pounding the pavement meant we got to know each other very well!”
Next stop: Vancouver. New to the city and looking to connect and continue to challenge herself, Carla found the Terminal City Rollergirls in 2007. A decade-plus later, she’s still coaching and playing the sport. She even gave up an award-winning career as an architect to focus on fitness training for derby athletes with her previous venture, Roller Derby Athletics, under her former derby name “Booty Quake.” “I’m obviously drawn to the team aspect of sports. The bonds between friends are always strongest when you’ve had to overcome physical and mental challenges together. Roller Derby has never stopped challenging me, and it has forged a community of confident, inspiring women who are family to me. I’ve made the friendships of a lifetime.”
Carla Smith and Lucy Croysdill are Co-Founders of the Girls on Track Foundation. A not-for-profit whose mission is to foster important life skills in teenage girls, through participation in roller derby as skaters and decision makers.
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