Everyone has heard about roller derby at one time or another, but while it is a well-known spectacle from our past, what is roller derby really all about and what exactly makes it a sport?
Roller derby involves bouts featuring two teams with five skaters each on a track facing off for 60-minutes.
The Gotham Girls use a flat track and split the game into two 30-minute halves complete with a half-time show that includes some unique participants, from martial artists to sword swallowers.
In the game itself, each team consists of a pivot, three blockers and a jammer. The pivot sets the pace and leads the group of skaters, and the blockers stay behind them, guarding each other in what is called the pack.
Jammers, like Bronxite Nicole Williams, who plays for the Bronx Gridlock, games ultimately leading up to a championship. In 2006, Bronx Gridlock lost to the eventual champions, The Queens of Pain, and ended up in third place on the year.
This year, the team hopes to fare better and is looking for a permanent practice facility now that Bronx Skate Key has closed. A new season begins in April and Williams is hopeful to see a lot of Bronxites come out and cheer the Gridlock on to victory.
©2007 Community News Group
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