ELEANOR BRUISEVELT

At the end of 2005, I had heard (via MySpace!) that a few women were trying to form a roller derby league in CT. A friend messaged me with the info and said, “this is right up your alley!” I had always been very athletic but there wasn’t much opportunity to participate in anything as a grown up.

I contacted the person who was trying to organize us, met everyone at a rink in Stratford during an open skate and nearly broke my wrist two seconds after lacing up. We had no idea how roller derby was played! We formed a group of interested people and started doing our homework. In March of 2006 we had our first real practice(we still had no idea what we were doing) by 2007, we had hosted our first public bout and by 2008, we had formed a travel team!

I had skating experience as a child but I hadn’t been on skates in at least 15 years and I wasn’t good. It took a few weeks to gain some confidence and speed but it finally clicked and I loved that I was learning new skills every practice.

I had very little expectations as I had never even seen roller derby! All I knew is that I wanted to play a sport and because I wasn’t exactly a mainstream type of person, I thought it was a great fit and it was!

I’ve learned so many things from roller derby. I’ve learned discipline and teamwork, accountability, the ability to multi task, mental toughness, etc. it’s been one of the most rewarding experiences in my entire life. I’ve been a member of CTRD since 2006. I took some time off to have a baby in 2011, and came back for two seasons.

I took another break in 2013 to have my second child and start a business. Once I felt like I had my life back under control, I came back again in 2016 and played my first game in 2017! Roller derby gives me a break from being “just a mom” and is important for me to maintaining my own identity. My biggest challenges are balancing my business, derby, family, social life and training but I’ve managed to get a hold on it and I’m so happy to be skating again!


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