by Mel Blackwood
Roller Girl Gang's vision is to empower people to roller skate into their most joyful life.
Everyone has a story to tell. We want to learn more about why roller skates are so special to so many people – no matter your age, gender, race, culture or ability. We hope this series inspires you to try roller skating, because roller skating brings us so much joy!
Stories are powerful and even more so when you hear someone's story told directly by them. This project has been very humbling. The very personal things that folks have chosen to share are gifts. You'll see!
Episode 18: Claire
Claire was determined to get back into roller skating after a few years of thinking about it. During lockdown, she found that the pair of roller skates she initially had didn't give her the confidence or experience she remembered. She didn't give up though, the curious skater within gave it another go, and this time she didn't look back.
Claire's story is a truly inspirational one as she smashes those barriers that society holds about women in mid-life and what is or isn't acceptable! Listen to how she deals with the doubters who say "Skating, at your age!? But you're nearly 50!"
Claire says "I didn't go into it expecting to be the thing I love, but it's exhilarating. It's like flying. We now have a beginners night [at the skate park] - mostly women, but some men too. I love that it's all ages and connecting with people. I'm the 'grandma' of the group and I love saying, "You're not too old, I'm older than you and I'm doing it."
"I think a lot of people have this real fear about falling over - are people going to laugh at me when I fall over? 9 times out of 10, it's us laughing at ourselves when we fall over. I think it's really good to be able to relax into ourselves and laugh at ourselves. As long as you are enjoying it, it doesn't matter how slowly you progress."
Did this conversation make you reminisce about childhood skating or leave you feeling inspired? Let us know in the comments.
Support us by liking and sharing the video, buying roller skates and accessories or attending our classes. This helps us raise money that we can re-invest into the skate community.
Our mission is to create a welcoming and friendly atmosphere where all skaters can come to shop, learn and share their love of roller skating with others. We strive to be a valuable resource and safe space for the roller skate community and beyond; to contribute to its growth and success.