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Carlesa Williams

Carlesa's Inline Skating Blog

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Is Inline Skating in the News?

Saturday May 31, 2014

Why don't we see inline skating in the news and or in other media? It just might be because we are too busy skating. When you take a good look around, you will find that even when skating events don't get attention, the skating sports make a great backdrop for other news events.

Some roller sports clubs make an effort to release news information to the media to promote their own members and help the sport, but these efforts usually end up in regional or local publications and seldom have national or international interest. USA Rollersports (USARS) has helped these local efforts by creating press templates for USARS member clubs to use to promote team participation in events and to announce competition results.

But you do not need to be a USARS member to send out press information for your inline or roller skating group, club team or event with these tips for writing a good roller sports press release.

Build Our Sport: Adopt a Skater

Monday May 26, 2014

When I was a kid in Detroit, almost everyone on my block roller skated in some shape or form - on the streets, at the neighborhood rink, in the park or at the community YMCA or recreation center. Today it is not as easy. Many neighborhood streets present safety issues, rinks and skating centers are no longer in every neighborhood, some parks limit skating and many multi-sport centers are afraid that skates will mar their beautiful sports courts.

If you visit this site, you are probably already deep into your roller sports activities, and know a lot about the sport. Glad to have ya, but we also need lots of newbies to keep inline and roller sports alive. If you have any skating knowledge to share and feel comfortable sharing your knowledge, why not adopt a new skater and help grow our sport. Adopting is easy:

  • Invite anyone you know who does not have a recreational or competitive sport to try inline skating or another roller sport.
  • Offer your free advice to a friend, family member or even a stranger in your skate turf who is new to skating. If they are looking for help (some may be just fine on their own), you can provide your newbie skater with some basic training tips.
  • Get your old, unused  skating gear out of the closet and find a good home for it. This equipment may be useless for your advanced skills, but could be heavenly for someone stuck in rental skates.
  • Consider going skating with your newbie. Although skating with a beginner may not be challenging physically for you, the excitement that a new skater feels when the wind finally hits them in the face is contagious - and will renew your joy in roller sports.
  • The most important thing you can provide as a skating mentor is much-needed encouragement. Those first few weeks on wheels are rough for some skaters, especially older ones. You can provide some light at the end of the training tunnel.

If it has been a while since you marched instead of rolling, review some of the basic inline skating skills for beginners and look at a few things from a beginners perspective.

If you talk to ten potential skaters, I bet one or two will try it and like it.

The Long and Short of Speed Skating

Monday May 19, 2014

Speed skating is an exciting sport on quads, inlines or ice blades. But many don't understand the long and short of it when it comes to racing on ice where there are short track and long track events.

Aside from the track size, many wonder what the difference is between long track and short track ice speed skating. Long track and short track speed skating are very different in other ways that require unique strategies and abilities. A long track skater is working to achieve the fastest times possible alongside one other athlete. Short track is skated in packs or groups without lanes. It is exciting since skaters sometimes physically interact as they jockey for positions on the track.

Our own inline racing grew from quad racing, but it is enough like ice speed skating to allow skaters with an interest in Olympic level competition to cross over between the ice and inline speed skating disciplines. There are even transfer camps and workshops to help inline racing athletes make this transition. Inline speed skating is an international sport for either short or long distance racers.

Both sports require balance, speed and agility.

North Carolina Skate Marathon

Tuesday May 13, 2014

Millie sent a note to extend an invitation for all to the North Carolina Skate Marathon which will be held on Sunday, August 17, 2014 at Country Park in Greensboro, North Carolina.

Country Park is a National Historical Landmark with history that dates back as part of the Battle of Guilford during the Revolutionary War. The park also has many special features, so both skaters and spectators will enjoy the venue. The event will take place rain or shine, so bring rain wheels just in case.

In addition to a full inline skating marathon, this event also includes a half marathon, a 5k fun skate and a 5k derby challenge with activities for all skill levels, inlines or quads and ages 9 to 99.  The race will take place on a safe, traffic-free 1.6 mile paved loop around Country Park. There are a variety of distances to choose from, too.

Visit the official race site to get more event information and pre-register online to save $10 off the race-day ticket price.

Cuba Gooding Jr. – Rink Operator

Thursday April 3, 2014

So, maybe the rink operator title is stretching the truth a bit, but Cuba Gooding Jr. did feel that his private roller hockey rink was one of the better features in his beautiful home in Pacific Palisades, California. Roller hockey is his favorite sport, and Cuba has also been a member of the All STARS Hockey League, along with model Kim Alexis, Chris Kirkpatrick of 'N Sync, producer Jerry Bruckheimer, and pro hockey players Bobby Nystrom and Gary Nylund.

Gooding recently sold the property for around $10,000 million, so hopefully some lucky rich skater has a custom roller rink right at home.

National Health Through Fitness Day

Monday March 31, 2014

Rollerblade® is credited with creating one of the fastest growing sports in the world by completely changing the perception of inline Rollerblade® Logoskates. The company is also part of the 15th National Health Through Fitness Day at Capitol Hill that was held from March 4-5, 2014. This year the event was sponsored by the Sports & Fitness Industry Association (SFIA) and included about 150 leaders from the fitness, sports, and physical education industries who gathered to help pass legislation to overcome the sedentary lifestyle int the United States. For the past 15 years, the SFIA has brought many people together to lobby Congress, including 15-20 sports celebrities such as Herschel Walker, Mia Hamm, Abby Wambach, Peyton Manning, Tim Brown, and more who come to Washington, D. C. to help this cause.

As a major innovator in the inline skating industry, Rollerblade is always looking for ways to provide people of all ages and skating levels with opportunities to become more active and have fun. This season's National Health Through Fitness Day was a successful part of the SFIA's efforts to pass new fitness legislation.  If you want to get involved or learn about National Health Through Fitness Day, visit the Sports & Fitness Industry Association site, and to find out more about Rollerblade, visit Rollerblade.com.

© Rollerblade®, Inc.

There's Power in Numbers

Tuesday March 25, 2014

Inline skaters crossing the Pont Neuf during a Sunday afternoon skate.

Unfortunately, no one knows where we can get it. USA Roller Sports is anxious to build membership in all disciplines and so is U.S. Figure Skating as well as most other skating federations around the world, for that matter. But all sports must grow from the bottom up to provide enough enthusiastic families and kids to trickle into the elite activities, while the rest become the knowledgeable fans who skate just well enough to hang on every accomplishment of the competitors and pros and support the suppliers who make our gear to keep it affordable. We need thousands of rounders, recreational skaters, street skaters, session skaters and fitness skaters behind each one that reaches an elite status... or who is going to lead the cheers and become our roller sports fans?

So where can we find a lot of committed skaters if there are not enough of them in our skating classes, clubs, teams or roller rink sessions - and without the help of a big media recruiting opportunity like Olympic participation to inspire potential skaters?

Lets take it to the streets. There's a lot of power and fun (as well as media visibility) in group skates with a lot of participants. Group skating activities and night street skates like the FNS have existed in the United States and Europe since the development of current inline skates.

Most of these well known events are thriving, but we need to work on keeping them strong and continue to build, re-build and support our local community skates and even local parades. Outdoors is free, easy for anyone to see and when weather is not agreeable, many who are hooked will come indoors to support the rink operators - and maybe even tackle a specific roller sports skating discipline.

Prehistoric Skate Wheels?

Sunday March 23, 2014

We used to joke about "Flintstone skate wheels." That is what happens when you Four Wheel Rotationforget to do a simple rotation of your inline wheels and excessive wear patterns give you the roll of a prehistoric push cart.

Now, the snow is finally melted in most places, so it is time to do all of your spring skate cleaning and rotating. The winter was rough enough - you don't need a rough roll into nice warm weather.

Image © 2009 Carlesa Williams, licensed to About.com, Inc.

An Urban Athlete Story and More

Saturday March 22, 2014

I started out watching a documentary on the Swedish rollerblader Peter Davik called An Urban Athlete Story. It is an HD short with a great soundtrack that was filmed sometime during 2013 in Stockholm, Sweden. The producer and Director of photography is Joel Fernberg with secondary photography by Anders Bergen, editing by Anders Bergen and Joel Fernberg, and color correction and graphics by Anders Bergen. The announcer is Christian Schjott-Quist and subtitles were translated by Emil Sejby. A good one to see.

But when I saw the Hang Losers logo, a click through revealed that the Hang Losers United Rollerblading Club is "a respectful organisation of creative people who are passionate about going out bladin." And with more than 50 Vimeo videos and shorts, they are pretty passionate about film making, too. Looks like this group of urban skaters have a lot of production skills and know that skating is the best way to have fun on wheels and get exciting footage, too.

Afraid to Roll Into Spring?

Monday March 17, 2014

Are you afraid to try one or more of the roller skating sports this spring?  Many families that drop in for beginner or advanced skating lessons are there to conquer their skating demons.

Most people have at least tried inline or roller skating at some time in their life, since skating activities are at the top of the list for schools, churches and other groups for party for fundraising activities. But some do not continue skate beyond the annual field trip, because a fall discouraged them or a few giggles embarrassed them.

In addition to lessons, there are many ways to eliminate skating fears. If you start now, you can skate some summer rail trails, schedule a birthday party at your local rink or even join a USA Roller Sports team with no fears.

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