Skills, Drills and Spills (Part 3)

A big part of roller derby is the set of minimum skills that every skater needs to be able to do in order to be game ready. These skills range from being able to stand on one leg in skates for 30 seconds, all the way up to taking and giving a big ol’ full body check safely.

Passing minimum skills is a rite of passage for every skater – and it isn’t easy, and it definitely isn’t always quick! In this series, some of our skaters share their minimum skills journeys and their top tips for persevering when it seems like 27 in 5 or reverse crossovers are constantly out of reach.

Photo by Roller Derby on Film

Axis Denied

How long have you been skating?

3 and a bit years

What level are you skating at now?

Maven (rec league)

How long did it take you to pass your minimum skills in full?

3 and a bit years

How did you feel while you were working towards passing?

After the first testing run felt pretty down, as I basically didn’t pass anything and my intake seemed so good. At that point I had already bought the kit, which to be honest is what kept me coming. After another few months I really started to get to enjoy it again and got to know people a bit more, and (slowly!) started to improve. Everyone was really patient and friendly, and I felt comfortable to go at my own pace. Life, kids work and husband breaking his leg got in the way so that I couldn’t commit as much as others, but got there eventually.

How did you feel after you passed?

Really great and also relieved!

What advice would you give to yourself back then?

Don’t worry! Hitting on skates is something your body doesn’t want to do. Just keep on it and you’ll get there.

What advice would you give to people who are worried about passing min skills now?

Some people take 3/4 years, some take 4 months and lots do it somewhere in between. It’s your own personal goal, don’t worry about what others are doing. There will always be people in mins to be your teamies!

Also in this series:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 4

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