Raw Meat Roller Skating Feb. 2: Braveheart

When: Saturday, Feb. 2, 5 to 7 PM
Where: Thunderbird Community Centre, 2311 Cassiar St.
What: Two hours of roller skating skills and roller derby drills
Who: All levels of roller skater, full safety gear required
Why: Because it’s awesome
How much: $7

February is Heart Disease Awareness Month. In particular, women are urged to wear red on Feb. 1, to raise awareness that heart disease is the number one killer of women. Wearing red is great, and it’s one of my favourite colours. But, you know what else helps? Eat something healthy, get some exercise, speak to a doctor if you have any health worries, and do something fun and social to lower stress.

So, kill a bunch of birds with one bearing, and get yourself down to Raw Meat tomorrow for two hours of roller skating fun. It’s exercise, it’s fun, and it’s stress relieving. And hey, if the sight of fully-grown adults playing hotdog tag doesn’t warm the cockles of your heart, then you probably do have a problem.

Speaking of hearts, congratulations to all Raw Meat alumni who passed the TCRG’s Fresh Meat program, and who are on the verge of getting drafted to a team. I’m so proud of all of you, and I can’t wait to see you play your first bout!

For some people, skating and other physical tricks come easy. For others, learning a new sport, especially a new sport played on eight slippery, treacherous wheels, requires a huge—and painful—learning curve. Anyone who learns to skate, especially as an adult, is guaranteed to fall down. A lot. And there’s some guaranteed pain that comes with that. The flipside of that pain is the courage and willingness to get up and keep skating anyway. Whether you’ve just strapped on your skates for the first time, or you’ve been honing your skills for years, this sport takes guts, and it takes heart, and I salute you.

What you’ll learn at Raw Meat Vancouver Roller Skating:

We’ll cover the basics of roller skating, including stops, falls, agility drills, skating form, roller skating in proximity with others, a few fun tricks, and some (non-contact) roller derby strategy drills.

All levels of roller skater, including beginners, are welcome. We’ll help beginners learn to skate, and give more advanced skaters some fun drills and games.

What to bring:

You must have roller skates, and all safety gear: knee pads, elbow pads, wrist guards, helmet, and mouth guard. The venue also requires everyone to use white or light-coloured, non-marking toe stoppers. If your knee pads are black, please cover them with white, non-marking hockey tape. Vertical strips of tape work best. Sessions are $7, and take place every Saturday from 5-7 at 2311 Cassiar St.

The rules:

Raw Meat has two rules: 1. Be Safe, 2. Don’t be an asshat. All sessions are non-contact.