Jammers, blockers and roller skates. It's the game of roller derby and Young Arena is full of skaters from all over the country who are participating in a four day boot camp. The camp is for derby girls across the country and is important for those trying to improve their skills.
"I'm a new skater, so just learning better ways to control myself on the track, to be a safer skater. I'm looking forward, especially on our bout on Saturday, to utilizing some of those skills I learned," said Karris "Pound Cake" Mattox, a derby girl from the Push-Up Brawlers.
Roller derby is well known in California and in the Southwest. But this type of camp is valuable for derby girls across Iowa and the Midwest, where the sport is newer.
"There is not opportunity like this very often for girls in the Midwest to only have to drive two or three hours versus hopping on an airplane and fly to Vegas where the big roller derby training camp is. A lot of the bigger leagues host big events. So for us to be able to pull a national caliber training camp into Waterloo, Iowa is a pretty big deal," said Morgan "Morganized Chaos" Combs, the Push-Up Brawlers President.
Experienced skaters from Texas and even Olympic speed skaters have come to share their skills with the derby girls. It all leads up to a double header event Saturday when the skaters will have a chance to try out for the all-star bout.
Interested in joining the derby girls? Combs says they're always looking.
"We'll be recruiting again towards the end of the summer, early fall, and hopefully pull in good numbers. We just want to see it keep growing here," said Combs.
If you want to catch the derby girls in action, a double header event will be taking place at Young Arena Saturday for the price of one. Tickets for the double header can be purchased from any derby girl, Mohair Pear, Roots Market, and redtrucktickets.com.
More information about the Cedar Valley Push-Up Brawlers can be found at cvderbydivas.com.