Just about every recruitment campaign for roller derby asks you, “Do you have what it takes?” Seeing the words time and time again almost made them feel trite to me– until I really stopped to think about the whole roller derby ordeal. It’s not just a slogan. From recruitment to fresh meat training to the draft to being a rookie (to being a rookie again, in my case) to trying out for interleague teams to winning big games… to running a volunteer-based, skater-owned business to attending promotional and charity events to being a spokesperson for all that is derby, “what it takes” is a tall order. I am a middle-of-the-road player. I practice 12-15 hours per week. I strength train 1-2 days a week. I do my league job– social media– pretty much every day, all the time. The only thing I want more than making the B-team in the fall is to make the A-team. The most important thing is getting better. I’m more hopelessly devoted to this sport and my league than Sandy was to Danny in Grease, except it’s way more exciting than that heartfelt, yearning ballad.
And I count on my fellow skaters to be just as committed to making our league successful, on and off the track. So when you say you want to be a rollergirl, I want to know that you’ve got the fire. Those of us who are already rollergirls clawed our way through a physically and mentally grueling process to earn our spots. We’ve put in countless hours of time, buckets of sweat, and when we’re looking at who might join us for our quest for world domination, we need to know that you’re going to step up, if given the chance, and put it all out on the track for us too. That’s why it’s so much hard work to become an Atlanta Rollergirl. It’s because it’s even harder to BE an Atlanta Rollergirl. But every single moment is worth it. Do you have what it takes? Prove it.