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Yellow Jacket Roller Derby – The Club (2019)

Yellow Jacket Roller Derby – The Club (2019)


♪ [music] ♪ Hi, I’m Maggie Corbett,
and welcome toThe Club. Today, I got the chance
to speak with Sophia Burdell and Alice Frances from
the Yellow Jacket Roller Derby. First, here is Sophia. Sophia:
The premise of roller derby is, it’s played on
an elliptical track. It’s a full-body contact sport,
and so there’s two teams. So on each team,
you can roster 15 people, but only five people
are on the track at once. So of each five, there’s only one person
that can score points, and they are called
the jammer. Everyone else is considered
a blocker. So the jammer tries
to pass members of the opposing team
around the track, and every time they pass
a member of the opposing team they get a point. And so you’re trying to block
the opposing jammer while helping your jammer
through the pack. The nature of the sport, it doesn’t matter
your body type, your gender, how you look,
what your style is. It doesn’t matter. As long as you have
a good attitude, want to play the sport,
it’s for you. You know? And I think that’s why
I really like it, is because you can be whatever. But as long as
we’re playing together and have a good structure
of the team, its I don’t know. It’s just
a really special thing to me. So to get a roller derby name, you have to pass a minimum
skills requirement outlined by our governing body. But once you pass
that minimum skills, you can get
a roller derby name. My name’s Skatie Scarlett. I loveGone with the Wind, and Katie Scarlett O’Hara
is obviously the main character. I like a lot of her grit and
gumption throughout the novel, and I feel like that’s what
I want to embody on the track. For the gear, we play
on quad roller skates. So these are my quad
roller skates. We also have wrist guards,
elbow pads, knee pads, and a helmet.
And here’s my helmet. And I have my I have my name,
Skatie Scarlett, number 23, on there as well. So lots of gear to keep us safe. For us specifically,
we do fall open enrollment and we also do spring
open enrollment. So it’s usually at the
beginning of the semester. We have flyers around,
our Facebook page has things, and so you get to try out
skates, learn how to skate. And for us, you know, you can
enter with no experience at all and that’s pretty cool. So getting involved on campus
is pretty easy, but there’s a bunch
of other leagues around that take varying levels
of skills as well. Maggie: Thank you, Sophia.
Now, here’s Alice. Alice: So we have two 30-minute
halves that make up a bout, which is what
we call a match, and each of those halves
is 30 minutes of game play time. So we do a succession
of as many what we call jams as can fit in 30 minutes. Each jam can last
up to two minutes. Two minutes is like
the standard length, but if you are a jammer
and you break through the pack before the other jammer, you are what’s called
the lead jammer, and that lead jammer can call
off the jam at any time. So if they get tired,
if they feel like their team is just not doing well
in that jam, then they can do a signal like
this where they touch their hips and then the ref
calls off the jam. There’s four blockers
on the track at any given time, and those four work together to block the jammer
from the other team. And so you can place
three of those blockers in a tripod formation where two blockers are facing
forward and skating forward and one blocker is facing
backwards and skating backwards. So you link shoulders
so the backwards-facing skater will put their hand on the
forward-facing skaters shoulder and vice versa,
and they will The backwards-facing skater
will watch for the jammer and say, she’s on the inside,
she’s on the outside, and then the whole tripod
can move together. And you can also rotate
and swing your hips around to kind of block people
on the inside or block people on the outside. So it’s really dynamic.
There’s a lot of communication. It’s really easy to feel part
of a team when you’re blocking, because you’re usually
blocking with someone else, someone else’s shoulders
leaning against yours. So it’s easy to kind of
have that teamwork aspect, which is something
that I really, really enjoy. We’ve had a lot of like team
bonding and social events, which are something that,
personally, I enjoy a lot more. But I’ve been really surprised
by a lot of the athletic moments that I’ve had, just because
I have never really gotten a lot of like feelings
of accomplishment from athletic situations
or athletic events. But my first scrimmage
that I went to, I was jamming for the first time and I got through the pack first
before the other jammer. And when that happens,
the ref points to you and says, Lead jammer. And it’s just a very like,
you know, it’s a big moment and people clap and my team
was there and oh my gosh, I’m getting a little emotional
now thinking about it. But yeah, it was really awesome. I think that was the first time that I felt like
I had an athletic team behind me while I was doing
something individual. ♪ [music] ♪

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