Common questions…

Q: Who can join?
A: Anyone over the age of 18.  Derby is a sport that appreciates women of all shapes, sizes, and athletic ability.  We have skaters of all ages, all levels of skating experience, and a wide variety of professions.  Men can also play roller derby with the Capital City Hooligans, who hold practices in Springfield.

Q: Do I need to know how to skate?
A: NO!  We can teach you how to skate and build on any skating ability that you already have.  With practice and dedication you will become an advanced skater.

Q: Do I need to be a certain size to play?
A: Absolutely not!  There are certain advantages to being big or small, short or tall.  Our league has a variety of body types as most other leagues do.  When it comes to derby your body is always an asset in some way and that’s one of the beautiful things about it!

Q: Will I get hurt?
A: As with any contact sport, you can get hurt.  We teach you how to skate and fall safely on your first night.  For your first few weeks, you will be taught the basics of skating and derby, as well as considered a non-contact skater—which means that you won’t be expected to be hit (hip, shoulder or full body checks) or hit other skaters.

Q: What gear do I need?
A: For the first few practices, you can borrow skates and protective gear.  Every skater is expected to have a mouth guard. For roller derby, quad skates are required (not in-line or rollerblades), but preferences of skates and gear can vary.  The protective gear includes a mouth guard, helmet, wrist guards, elbow pads, and knee pads.

Q: What do I need to bring on my first night?
A: Come in athletic clothing that is comfortable and supportive.  Bring a positive attitude and a willingness to learn derby.

Q: When can I join?
A: We have rolling recruitment which means you start your training on the first night at practice.  We work with you to get the basic skills and to pass the basic skills test.

Q: What is Fresh Meat?
A: Fresh Meat is a term used for a new skater to derby.  Fresh Meat is a period of time (usually 8 to 12 weeks) where you are training to be a derby player and to pass the minimum skills test.

Q: What is the minimum skills test?
A: The Women’s Flat Track Derby Association has a minimum skills test for skaters that they must pass before they are bout eligible.  You can find the minimum skills test here:

Q: Where can I buy skates?
A: Online is where most of us purchase skates. You can find your size out when you attend a open skate and rent their speed skates. Look for fresh meat package deals at, or other online shops.

Q: How much does it cost to play roller derby?
A: Roller derby can be an expensive sport when you first get started. You’ll need to purchase skates, protective gear and pay monthly dues. Dues are $25 a month. Gear can range anywhere from $200-$500 for a low to mid-grade setup.

For more information (skates, protective gear, fitness, derby names) check out the Roller Derby Fresh Meat File.