I am not in charge


You don’t have to listen to anything I say because I am  powerless….Although I am the Commissioner (look it up on the official Derby name register), all it means is I get to rant and suggest and I don’t have to worry about what anyone thinks.

Assassination City Roller Derby. Photo by channelinspire.com.

But I do.

If some of you can take criticism (oh what a way to start!), I would like to talk about Derby presentation today.  I know that I have mentioned before about making your games into events.  Yes you have to be concerned about the skaters;  without them there is nothing.  But if you want to grow and expand your audience, concentrate also on the spectators.

I got the feeling at Rollercon that many leagues do not really have a plan in how to promote your events and how to maximize your presentation.  I am  not talking merely about the production.  If you don’t figure ways to  promote, people except for friends and family will  not come.  And if they walk into your venue and they don’t get a little bit excited you are already in trouble.  Is the front of your arena clean and fan friendly…..do you have well-appointed members of your league there to greet them; give them programs, tell them where the vendors are, and more?  And when they go into  the rink area is it well lighted enough so they will focus on the game and  not be easily distracted.  Are there decorations or other types of banners to enhance the setting.  And I would love to see the minor  penalties go away so there are no excess people standing in the infield.

And the warmups:  are they disciplined and exciting…..at the end do all the skaters get in a line and do a fast powerful pace for a few minutes to show the teamwork and skill?  And I am certain there are other things you can think of…..Are your announcers in sync with what you want to present?   so important….and how good is your demo  of the game?

Roller Derby now has over 1000 leagues worldwide and the attention on your league will only increase because of the growing interest.

Now here is the part that just pushes everything to a higher level as far as I am concerned, and it was so important to me and Roller Derby of my day…..what are the skaters wearing and how do they present themselves.

OK right away I expect to hear ” it is our game, we put our numbers on our sleeves, wear tattered hose etc”….I understand and those that feel that way will continue to do so.  But to look at what you need to in order to move to the next level; your uniforms and gear must be of the highest order and signify sleekness, power and speed.  They should have numbers on them, not added, your league’s name and logo on them all part of the original design.  The leagues that are doing this are setting themselves off from the street-skating look.

I will continue this discussion with some suggestions that I have for you.  Stay tuned or just throw a skate at me.

Derby Love,  Your powerless Commissioner.