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A Journey from Rookie to SWAT B Team

What better time to be writing this, as I celebrate one year back on skates since my teenage years! I’m a 46yr old, single mum of 7yr old twins! How do I maintain my sanity I hear you ask......I play Roller Derby Here’s my story!

Many years ago, I had a pair of skates as a Christmas present. I practically lived in them, spending every hour after school skating, I loved it. Then exams, and my first job took over. And my skates gathered dust. Fast forward to February 2018. While scrolling through Facebook, I saw an advert for Reboot Roller Discos. OMG, a chance to strap on some skates and relive those teenage years. I took the kids along, who were equally as excited. Thinking I've so got this! That first thought when standing back up on 8 wheels was... I don’t remember them being this slippery. Lol Once out on the floor it was just like riding a bike, well sort of! It did eventually come back! The kids and I had a fantastic time. When I got home I popped on to Reboots Facebook page to leave a review, and noticed they also did adult skate classes. Throwing caution to the wind, I signed up. Within weeks they had me skating backwards and transitioning. Things I had never quite mastered as a teenager. I had become hooked. The crew are fantastic, teaching you at your own pace.

It was here that Roller Derby was first mentioned to me. I’d never heard of it. After a quick search of YouTube - like you do! - I thought, oh yes this is definitely for me! I got chatting to a couple skaters from SWAT Roller Derby and went along to a Monday night training sessions at St James School. Here they started putting me through my minimum skate skills (the basic requirements to play in games). I think the 27 in 5 will forever be etched in to my memory!

With the support of the SWAT team, I completed my minimum skills and it was such a proud moment.

I was presented with my 'Wings' and become a fully fledged SWATTIE! Then came the reality of playing in a game... In January this year I got to play in my first game alongside one of my fellow rookies from SWAT, Lisa aka Relisa Riot. After sharing our terror and a big hug, we hit the track! What a game, I loved every second of it. I achieved 23 points on one of my jams and won MVP.

In Jan 2019 I took on the role of a Devon Girls Can Ambassador for SWAT so now i'm encouraging others to get active and do something that could change your life just like i did.

It’s been a very eventful year! And I couldn’t have done it without the team from Reboot adult skate club, or the support from my fantastic team mates from SWAT. I'm so proud to be a SWATTIE!

Here’s to further skate adventures, probably many bruises, but most of all, lots of skate madness with friends. Hope to see you on a track or at a Roller Disco soon!

Gorier Gaynor

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