slam i am

Age: 25

Occupation: Disability support worker

Non-derby hobbies: I love the outdoors - so hiking, swimming and learning to wakeboard are some of my favourite non derby hobbies.

Tell us about your derby name. Well this is actually my second derby name! My friend originally helped me come up with Lady Blah Blah (which will need no explanation to my friends) but in the end it just didn’t feel like me. So I changed it to Slam. The inspiration comes from Green Eggs and Ham! It also describes my derby style.

What’s the story behind your number? I spent the first two years of my derby career trying to pass levels and being an off-skates official for local games. Trying to call out 4 numbers all in a row was really tricky so I wanted something short and sweet!

How did you discover roller derby? I met a roller derby NSO (Non-Skating Official) at an expo in my town. She was handing out flyers advertising their upcoming fresh meat intake and I thought it sounded like fun. So I took a friend along to the first night and I never looked back!

How long have you been with DPR? Just under a year.

What skating experience did you have when you joined? I had skated for 3.5 years with Bunbury Roller Derby before I transferred.

What do you love about DPR… what keeps you here? I love the DPR culture. They are as competitive as they are just skating for the love of skating. I feel deeply appreciated and welcomed by the whole DPR community.

Favourite derby moment so far? Oh gosh... trying to pick just one... probably playing in Kalgoorlie last year in their exhibition bout. They didn’t have enough players to verse themselves so they invited the derby community and basically it was a black and white game that was open to the public.  I got to play with a whole heap of my derby pals!

Biggest obstacle you’ve overcome? It took me a looooong time to pass minimum skills and to be bout cleared. Like 1.5 - 2 years long. Some of that had to do with scheduling and not always being able to make training because of work. The rest of it was because I had to really work for all of my skating skills. Nothing has ever come naturally to me and I’ve had to persevere every step of the way. A really big challenge during that time, and even as a travel team skater now, was not comparing myself to my friends or other teammates that seemed so much more natural and flew ahead of me. Roller derby is a team sport but the learning process is so personal. I really value how long it took me to start bouting now, because I now have such a deep understanding of game play and the rules from watching and listening to everyone around me whilst I was still a freshie!

What advice do you have for a new skater? Do some kind of off-skates fitness! Your legs will thank you for it. Skating makes you use muscles that you don’t even realise you have but doing off-skates training will help to build those muscles quicker!