How much does it cost?
Sign-up: To join WARD as a Member, you will need to pay a yearly membership fee, and also sign up for annual insurance with Skate Australia.
Training: There are two options for your training session. WARD offers a generous discount for paying your training dues upfront on a monthly or 3-monthly basis. Doing so results in a significant saving even if you only train once per week, and the more sessions you go to, the more you save. If you do not choose to pay upfront and take advantage of the discounted rate, sessions can be paid for on a casual basis.
The prices of membership, training and insurance change every so often, so send us an email or Facebook message for the most up-to-date figures. As a not-for-profit organisation, we do our best to keep our fees reasonable in order to keep roller derby as accessible as possible.
Of course, you will also need gear.
What gear do I need?
We have limited hire gear available (excluding mouth guards), but you may wish to purchase your own gear new or second-hand.
You will need a helmet, mouth-guard, elbow pads, knee pads, wrist guards, and skates. If you want to treat yourself to new stuff, then Lucky Skates is your local place. If you are after second-hand gear, a great option is to check out eBay, Gumtree, or the WA Skate Swap/Sell/Buy page on Facebook for bargains. If you wish to borrow gear, please email your Level 1 coordinator in advance to find out what we have and in what sizes, as it’s first come first served. Be warned, the loan gear stinks so you want to get your own as soon as possible. At the very least, you will need your own mouthguard before you can skate with us.
What’s the process to join up?
Come along to one of the information sessions (held every 3 months) and hear all about how our program works, how to sign up, and what the costs are. As these are held during a training session, you will get to see the current skaters and officials in action.
Will I get hit on my first session?
No – we prioritise your safety. Level 1 is entirely non-contact – so you won’t get hit at all.
Particularly if you’re new to skating, helping you become steady on your feet, control your speed and fall safely is what we aim for. You will need to do 12 weeks of training, and then pass the Level 1 assessment before you are classed as Level 2 (Contact Cleared).
Only from that point, with the fundamental skills cleared, will we teach you how to both give and take hits safely in Level 2.
What will my first training session be like?
After paying your session fee, and signing in, we’ll all do an off-skates warm-up together, then you’ll be introduced to your coach. Your coach will ease you into the world of derby with some practice at stopping, maybe a couple of falls, and some stepping. You may even do a speed skate, to get your starting lap-count, which you will gradually increase over the coming weeks. Then it’ll be over before you know it and we’ll all do a cool-down and a chat. We’re pretty friendly like that.
Can I be an official / referee?
Are you more interested in the workings of the game? Do you have a spectacular poker face? Do you enjoy impartial, even-handed conclusions drawn from high-speed analysis of complex, fast-paced situations?
Then becoming an official or referee may be the right thing for you!
All members are welcome (and encouraged) to explore officiating, and there’s on and off-skates roles to fill. Plus – the better you know the game, the better you play!
Can I try a training session before I sign up?
Unfortunately, no. Due to the nature of this sport, you need to be completely insured before stepping on the track. But if you come along to one of our information sessions you can watch our current Level 1 and 2 skaters train. That will give you a fair idea of what training involves and whether it might be for you!
Is it hard work?
The hardest session is the first one, as your muscles may not be used to this kind of movement. The next hardest session is the second one because you will know what to expect, and it may be harder than you thought, and you may start to doubt yourself. This is normal. Don’t worry, it gets easier each and every week. If you stick with it for 12 weeks we promise you will look back and smile at your progress.
Can my friends come and watch me train?
All of our training sessions are closed to the public, to protect the privacy of our skaters. The last thing anyone needs when they’re trying to learn a new skill is an audience. However, week 7 of every cycle is our Family and Friends night, which is when you can invite anyone you like to come along and watch you train. They can even bring pompoms.
How long will it take before I can play games as a skater?
Exactly as long as it takes. Good work takes time!
Everyone learns this sport at their own pace and there is no pressure to advance before you feel ready. Some skaters prefer to do each level a few times before assessing, others can’t wait to get to the next one. Its entirely up to you.
It’s entirely possible to blaze through the 4 levels and all 3 of the assessments and become a bouting skater after 9 months, but it’s perfectly normal to take longer – even years!
But I can’t skate….?
That’s ok, we’ll teach you! However, if you feel you’d like to be able to skate a little before starting, most of the rinks in Perth hold adult skating lessons. These are often called “star classes”. They are awesome and definitely help, and we highly recommend them.
How do I get a derby name?
Many skaters come up with their own derby name, but you might find that your teammates just give you one!
Either way, you can officially register your derby name either once you pass your level two assessment, or after you have made a solid contribution to the league as an official or volunteer.
After that though – why not explore the world of printed shirts, gear and helmet stickers customised with your shiny new moniker?