By the McKinley Mayhem Roller Derby Team
Roller derby started in Gallup in February 2014 when one of our teammates moved from Silver City to a new job here in Gallup. She had had experience on a team there and once we heard all about roller derby we were ready to dust off our skates and start learning about the growing sport. We come from different professions and backgrounds. We have nurses, social workers, clerks, nutritionists, and an accountant, among other professions that have signed up to play on our team. Most of us are mothers and wives that have been sitting on the benches watching our children or husbands play one sport or another. We wanted to do something we really enjoyed that our families could support and come and watch US play. Roller Derby was a perfect fit!
Skating is something we all loved to do as kids and have found that we still love to do it. We embrace that we are all women/mothers/wives that want to do something healthy that we love. It also allows us to exert some physical aggression and to be a part of our own “team.” It is a fantastic sport for women! Roller Derby is one of the fasted growing sports in the world. It has evolved so much in the past decade and we are thrilled to bring it to this community.
So we now have a team here in Gallup. We are the McKinley Mayhem Derby Team. We have about 8 girls right now and need at least 8 to 10 more. We have great support from the community, we have places to practice and the rest of the Derby teams in New Mexico are ready to play with us . . . just as soon as WE are ready. We have 2-hour practices once a week, but these will probably increase as our team grows so we can accommodate all the skaters’ schedules. The cost to do Derby is pretty low. You have to buy your skates and pads in the beginning, but after that there is very little cost. It is a contact sport, but we will teach you how to keep from getting hurt too badly. We will also teach you the sport and give new players time to get used to skating again.
Sammy C’s, Bonaguidi’s Construction and the City of Gallup were all very excited about Roller Derby coming to Gallup and provided invaluable support and space to practice. We have also reached out to other Roller Derby teams in New Mexico and have received fantastic support from their teams and offers to bout and to practice with them. The Roller Derby community as a whole is extremely supportive of each other and in helping the sport to advance and grow. It’s a wonderful sisterhood that exists among the ladies and teams. We welcome anyone who is interested in skating, volunteering, refereeing, or simply supporting us to get in contact with us – see below for more information.
1. What is flat track roller derby?
Flat track roller derby is a fast-paced contact team sport that requires speed, strategy, and athleticism. The flat track version of the sport evolved in 2001, and has quickly grown to more than 400 leagues worldwide. This is in large part due to the ease of setting up a flat track – it can be done on any flat surface that is suitable for skating, such as skating rinks, basketball courts, parking lots, and even airplane hangars. The DIY spirit that drives the sport allows roller derby leagues to create their own unique identities and adapt their structures to reflect their local communities.
2. I bet there are a lot of elbows thrown, right?
Not unless a skater wants to spend some quality time in the penalty box. There are plenty of legal ways to send an opponent flying into the third row, but to keep the game play safe and competitive there are rules governing how and when players can make contact with each other. Throwing elbows, pushing or tripping opposing skaters, and “clothes-lining” opponents by linking arms with your teammate are among the prohibited actions that can earn skaters a minute in the penalty box. Like other sports, more serious offenses like fighting or intentional tripping can get a skater kicked out of the game.
3. Who is eligible play roller derby?
Women over the age of 18 are eligible to join. Men over the age of 18 can participate as referees, announcers, coaches, or as other volunteers. Anyone of any age can help in promoting, fundraising sponsoring, or attending events for the McKinley Mayhem Roller Derby Team.
4. When can I join?
You can join TODAY! We are a new team and looking for anyone with or without skating experience! We will teach you all about the sport of roller derby. Currently we practice on Sunday afternoons. We have open practices and you are welcome to come at any time.
5. What else do I need to know about joining the McKinley Mayhem Roller Derby Team?
It will be important for you to develop your skating skills in addition to learning the rules of the game. A great place to start is to review the WFTDA (Women’s Flat Track Derby Association) minimum skills requirement that we will all be tested on before we begin to compete (bout). One of the best ways to learn about roller derby is to watch a lot! We recommend that you utilize google, YouTube, Facebook, as well as coming to watch practices.
6. What if I have more questions?
CALL/TEXT: derby phone 575-519-8830