East Vancouver’s Rolla Skate Club offers a youthful, entertaining and enthusiastic alternative to your humdrum fitness routine

It’s a tale as old as time. New year, same resolution to commit to working out more, eating healthier, and a 99% likelihood of inevitably giving it the old college try before calling it quits before the month is even over.

Cynical? Perhaps. Still, it’s a repetitive cycle that many of us are guilty of, but not this year! 

Introducing a new yet nostalgic, fun yet fitness-oriented, enjoyable and engaging activity to help get your body moving and your endorphins firing without feeling like drudgery or ‘work.’ 

Rolla Skate Club, a welcoming and inclusive space in the heart of East Vancouver, offers an alternative to the standard treadmill, squat, dumbbell – or, worst of all, burpees – circuit routine and flips it on its head to offer an exercise alternative that’s as fierce and friendly as it is fun.

Dips, dives and dragons

Photo via: Rolla Skate Club.

Originating in 2018 by co-founders Carla Smith and Lucy Croysdill, the Rolla Skate dream became a reality from humble beginnings, comprising 100 pairs of old rental roller skates and a converted FedEx truck. 

Now, it possesses a permanent 20,000 square-foot facility in East Vancouver with 750 members. But more than that, it’s built a hospitable, empowering community of like-minded people bonded over the joy of coming together, being active, and participating in a fun and joyful activity without the self consciousness and insecurities commonly associated with a more generic gym environment.

In pursuit of singing their spirited skating message, Smith and Croysdill recently braved the Dragons Den earlier this year in search of investment and assistance in growing their community even further.  

And although they didn’t come out with a dragon in tow, the opportunity presented a monumental learning experience and critical exposure that has only solidified their ambition while inspiring the pivot to move away from franchising toward the creation of a simpler lower-barrier-to-entry, Partner program. 

To achieve this mission, the pair launched an Indiegogo campaign with the goal of raising $35,000 to help other entrepreneurs to open Rolla Skate Club’s in their communities. Thanks to their enthusiastic supporters, they smashed this original goal back in September! 

The campaign is still running, with all extra funds directed towards their Rollas Helping Rollas program, which provides access to the delight and mental health benefits of skating for those that couldn’t otherwise afford it.  

Mix, mingle, and move 

Photo via: Rolla Skate Club.

While a critical element of the Rolla Skate mentality is to get your body moving, it’s crucial to note that the venue is not a roller rink. Instead, it is a community-based gym and community space that offers roller skating classes six days a week and  “roller rink” type parties on the weekends. 

Ultimately, its objective is to emphasize and illustrate roller skating as one of the best low-impact fitness activities you can do. However, the broader, more significant message to those interested in finding a less intimidating, judgment-free exercise option is that they are welcome, encouraged and given the environment to thrive in a community that’s all about support, inclusivity and fun.

To learn more about Rolla Skate Club, membership options, and course packages, visit rollaskateclub.com/start-rolling.