PFM Roller Derby

Seattle Roller Derby Club

What’s a Roller Derby Practice Like?

“Every time someone laces up their skates, they are giving you permission that it is okay to push, hit, and knock them down. Stop apologizing. If you hit them in the face accidentally, apologize for that.”
- Connie Torturous, Jet City Roller Girls / PFM special guest coach

Every league/team has their own routine, but here is what you can expect from a regular PFM practice:

We try to show up 5 – 10 minutes before our scheduled practice time so that we can chit-chat, put our gear on, and be ready to skate as soon as our time starts.

To warm up, we skate about 40 laps, then stretch in the middle of the rink for about 5 minutes.

For the next hour or two, our coaches run us through a variety of drills. These drills are designed to teach and train skaters in a variety of roller derby skills, including speed, strength, endurance, agility, hitting, falling, blocking, and skating in a pack. We also sometimes play games (like dodgeball or freeze tag) or learn dance skating moves that help with these skills.

About 10 minutes before the end of practice, we skate in the opposite direction (clockwise) to cool down, and then stretch out in the center of the rink.

Additional tips:

Since the skill level of our group constantly varies with new people joining us throughout the year, sometimes we break out into two groups. This way, the newer skaters can learn foundational skills while the experienced skaters work on advanced techniques. We may also run two different difficulty levels of the same drill (e.g. a fast and a faster pace line at the same time).

Don’t worry about not being able to keep up. We’ll encourage you to push yourself, but if the drill is too much for you, you can always drop off to the side. If you do, try not to sit down. Keep skating around the outside of the track (or somewhere where you won’t get run over). This will keep your heart rate up and continue to build your endurance.

If you don’t know what you’re doing, just ask! Most of us started knowing very little about derby drills, stretching, equipment, injuries, etc. and will be happy to share whatever knowledge we’ve picked up.