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13 Things You Didn't Know About Roller Derby

Always wondered what exactly roller derby is anyway? Here's your go-to guide for the basics of the game. Who knows, you could be the next Skate Winslet or Hurt Vonneguts! To Love, Sweat and Beers™.

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1. Roller Derby traces back to "skating marathons" in the 1930's.

Al Aumuller, World-Telegram / Via commons.wikimedia.org

Originally, the goal of the sport was to complete a particular amount of laps around the track. In the 1940's it began to evolve into a competitive contact sport.

2. There are three positions in roller derby: jammer, blocker, and pivot.

Minette Layne / Via Flickr: minette_layne

The Jammer laps the opposing team members. The blockers help create a pack that protects the Jammer. The Pivot is a blocker who can be designated as a jammer during a jam as long as their helmet colors are transferred over properly, they can also act as a temporary captain to the pack.

5. Team members usually have neat "skater names".

Christopher Neugebauer / Via Flickr: chrisjrn

Some of these awesome pseudonyms include things like Michelle O'BamYa, Punky Bruiser, and Princess Lay-Ya Flat.

6. Names of bouts and tournaments also tend to be really awesome.

Christopher Neugebauer / Via Flickr: chrisjrn

Bouts tend to have fun, clever event names like "Night of the Rolling Dead" or "Knocktoberfest".

9. These ladies are fearless.

Earl McGehee / Via commons.wikimedia.org

The chest is usually the number one target zone in roller derby. Other areas that are allowed are the hands, hips, abdomen and front/sides of the player's legs. The neck, back, and leg below the thigh are illegal target zones and can result in a penalty.

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