Holiday Gear Guide

Holiday Gear Guide Photo credit: Danforth Johnson.

The holidays are nearly here and that means three things: a much-needed off-season break, an abundance of festive gatherings, and the time to prep for the 2017 roller derby season. While there’s no way for us here at Derby Central to mention every awesome bit of derby gear, apparel, or collectibles out there, here are some suggestions from Disaster Chief to start skaters off on the right foot next year.

2017 European Roller Derby Organizational Conference (EROC)

2017 European Roller Derby Organizational Conference (EROC) Photo credit: Michael Wittig. facebook.com/Michael.Wittig.Berlin

Roller Derby as we know it now has been strongly rooted in the United States since the early 2000s, with many leagues hitting their 10-year mark the last few years. The Women’s Flat Track Derby Association has been a means to support and connect leagues, but being based in the U.S. it can only reach so far. WFTDA tournaments have always been held in the North America, eight of the top ten teams are from the U.S., and all of WFTDA leadership is located in the States which often gives the rest of the world a feeling of disconnect.

Roller Derby has spread around the globe now, but at a rate that hasn’t been able to fully support itself. After derby hit Europe in 2006, one of the ways the continent has sought to connect different nations and foster the growth of the sport has been the European Roller Derby Organizational Conference. Bear City will be hosting the 8th annual EROC next month.

WFTDA 2017 Rules Update: Major Format Changes

WFTDA 2017 Rules Update: Major Format Changes Photo credit: Deadwards

The Women’s Flat Track Derby Association released the new rules at the beginning of the month, and we took a quick look at them last week and talked in general about the updated look and changes to the format. Now we are going to delve a little deeper to break down the organization of the Rulebook and the Casebook and how WFTDA went from 74 pages of rules to a much more condensed version.

Here, we will look at the rules as a whole and break them down for those who are familiar with the old format as well as those taking on derby for the first time and have no clue what they’re looking at.

We recommend spending some time with the rules, even if you had the old set memorized, and then follow up by reading them again alongside the Casebook. It sets up scenarios that teams could easily play out at practice, and catch even the derby veteran up to speed on the intricacies of things such as scoring or star passes – always a good thing.

WFTDA 2017 Rules Update

WFTDA 2017 Rules Update Photo credit: Deadwards

The Women’s Flat Track Derby Association has experienced many changes over the course of 2016. Early in the year, WFTDA announced plans to unify officiating certification with the Men’s Roller Derby Association while suspending the certification program itself a few months later to iron out the transition process. In April Cassie Haynes was selected as the new Executive Director after Bloody Mary stepped down prior to her retirement from skating at the end of the season. Then, just before WFTDA Championships, WFTDA rolled out their new website with both fan and member components.

Things haven’t slowed down since tournaments, and on December 2nd WFTDA released the newest version of their rules of Flat Track Roller Derby and it looks much different than before. They previously intended on revealing them in December with an enforcement date of January 1st, but with such an extensive overhaul, there are updated documents slated to be released February 1st. This means that leagues will have until February 15th to read up and apply any changes to the track.

Roller Derby Retirement Letter

Roller Derby Retirement Letter Photo credit: Deadwards

For those who feel the call of retirement coming on, but don’t quite know how to put into words what you should say to your league, Derby Central is here to help you out with our Mad Libs Retirement Letter.