Is SCAR for Me?

I recently passed my level ones. I still have a lot of work to do, but I’m getting there. I can do things I never thought I would be able to do. It’s safe to say I was one of the worst—if not the worst—skaters in our class when we started. I had no balance, no strength in my legs. I was a runner, but those muscles didn’t do what I needed them to in skates. In just a few weeks that has changed drastically. My strength has greatly improved. I can see and feel the changes in my leg muscles. I can cross over, I can skate on one foot (I could barely stand on one foot in September), and I can carry things at work I could never lift before. I feel like an athlete again.

And even more than that, for me, I’m having fun. I’m doing something. I’ve found a way to make this town not just bearable for me, but enjoyable. I’m on committees, I’m volunteering. I practice twice a week, and I work the merch tables at bouts since I’m not cleared to skate them yet. I go to after parties, I go out for drinks and dinner with teammates. I come home from really successful practices to find encouraging Facebook messages sent to me from teammates. I’m once again at a point in my life where I am surrounded by strong, intelligent, entertaining women. I’m making friends, I’m getting involved.

Scars at the Penn State Homecoming Parade
It’s been such an incredible experience. Over holiday weeks, Facebook statuses filled my newsfeed, girls home for break posting pictures of them skating in the random parking lots they could find, others lamenting the practices that were being missed. We crave it. We crave having wheels on our feet, for time on the track. My childhood was filled with ballet, tap, jazz, basketball, baseball, softball, soccer, tennis, snowboarding, skiing -- I was always active. I always loved being on a team—I loved competing, I loved the game. I never loved an activity so much that I missed it when I wasn’t doing it. I loved the games but I hated having to practice, and that’s not the case here. I’m completely in love with roller derby. And it’s a sport you can keep playing. Derby won’t tell you that you’re too old when you’re in your 30s like most sports do. It doesn’t tell you your body type isn’t right like dancing will.

If you identify as female, if you’re over the age of 18, if you can make two practices a week and pay your dues each month, and most importantly, if you’re willing to work hard and learn, then come to recruitment. Schedule to come watch a practice. If you’re interested at all and you have that little voice in your head that wants you to try it, then do it.