Having a Bout

Roller derby is awesome. Watching a roller derby bout (game) is great fun.

Roller derby, for those not in the know, is a game on roller skates in which you need to work you through a wall of your opponents and make rounds to score points. WFTDA has the official rules, Cesy did some posts on PMag about it as well, I just want to share the fun.

Several women in matching yellow and black uniforms dance on roller skates
The opponents warmed up with some dancing.

I’m not really a sports fan. Or at all. The only reason why I watch rugby matches is because it’s great bonding with my dad (and there are some gorgeous players), other games are usually spoiled by “fans” yelling ugly things and starting fights. But I like roller derby a lot. It was nearby and they had a theme, what more did I need?

Right away I noticed the party mood. Supporters of our team and of the competition were sitting next to each other. The Dutch speaker demanded as much applause and yelling for them as we gave the Dutch team. There was chatting, dancing (a lot of dancing) when a referee decision took too long, a candy lady walking around and during the break we got a circus performance “¦ not something I expected from a sports game. Sometimes I even forgot I was at a sports game.

Two roller derby teams at play
But then something like this would happen.


The Dutch Rotterdam Deathrow Honeys lost to the French Rollerderby Metz Club with ten points. It just mattered a tiny bit, because everyone had so much fun. The public lauded each team like they had achieved world peace on wheels. There was an after partywhere there were women with mustaches. I’d recommend a bout to anyone.

By freckle [M]

Freckle can't decide between writing fact or fiction, so she does both, on a very regular basis, and sometimes even for money.

8 replies on “Having a Bout”

I’m sure you could do a couple of trial lessons before joining? Fear of being hurt is a hurdle, but in my first ‘class’ they taught me five different ways of falling which really helped because you’re making it a challenge instead of an issue.

Can’t help you with the fees though ;)

Ohhh. Timely. I’m heading to a double header this Saturday. The girl who gave me a flyer at free comic book day said that I should come skate for them, and I am considering it. My best friend who is half my size just joined a league, and I keep thinking, if she can do it, so can I.

Bouts are fun but so much work! I stage managed a double header last year, so I was running around like a headless chicken from 10am to 11pm when I finally got bundled in a car and put to bed. I had to lay the track, organise dressing rooms and vendors, liaise with venue staff, greet the teams, keep to the running order and then when a girl broke her leg liaise with the medics, then tidy up. But it was such a good night (apart from the broken leg)! So I am super pleased you enjoyed it.

I’m no longer involved with derby, I seriously sprained my ankle, tearing ligaments and nearly ripping my Achilles in early February so I’ve had to give it up but my old league have a home bout in July that I will be going to. I’m looking forward to it. I plan to help my old league win the after-party :)


Oh shame about not playing anymore. I visited to fresh meat days but as long as they train on Saturday and I work on Saturday I won’t be able to be a derby girl.

It was a little bit clear that it was their first time but the enthusiasm and fun completely overruled that.

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