In its infancy on the Northern Rivers, roller derby has already attracted large numbers of new devotees.
In its infancy on the Northern Rivers, roller derby has already attracted large numbers of new devotees. JAY CRONAN

Roll on roller derby at Lismore

ROLLER derby flat track skating is taking Lismore by storm.

Just a few months ago the Northern Rivers Roller Derby League became incorporated and already about 100 women have donned their roller-skates and started training for when competitive games get going next year.

Some of the names you will be hearing will be Deb-auched, Melly-licious and Chop Chop – competitors adopt colourful pseudonyms.

Thelma Thudd, 45, of Tullera, one of the league’s organisers, said roller derby was the new running.

“The body copes better and you can go really fast,” Ms Thudd said.

Fifty-five-year-old Syko-Sin-D, originally from Texas – the home of roller derby – but now of Clunes, slipped on a pair of skates for the first time in 30 years earlier this year.

She hasn’t looked back.

She and other league members train every Thursday night at the Lismore skating rink.

“It’s all women,” Ms Sin-D said.

“It’s good exercise.

“No matter how well or poorly you skate, everyone is welcome.”

Roller derby is a contact sport in which one team, Jammers, try to bust their way past another team, Blockers. The Jammers score points by successfully passing the blockers.

Not all of the women who train each week will compete in the league; for many it is just a fun way to get fit.

However, Rocket Red, of South Lismore, hopes to make the team.

“Each time I come it sparks my competitive nature,” Ms Red said.

At the practice sessions the women have been learning to fall safely, while others are still finding their skating feet.

The league was started by Fairy Princess Power, of Dunoon, who wanted to find a fun way to exercise.

“I couldn’t engage in sport or the gym,” Ms Power said.

“I came to the rink and put on a pair of ‘mental rentals’ – I loved it.”

The league will be launched by Lismore Mayor Jenny Dowell with a demonstration bout by the Sun State Roller Girls at the Lismore rink on Saturday, May 15.

Doors open at 5pm and tickets at $15 are on sale at Caddies and Dragonfly Cafe.



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