Wednesday, September 28, 2016

A Body In Motion: Clarksville

This series of photographs are dedicated to showing real derby skater bodies without pretense and without apology.  This set is a pickup game between Team Black and Team Rainbow.  The sweat is real.  The hits are real.  The points are real. 

This set features skaters from delightful hosts, the ClarksVillain Roller Girls along with skaters from the West Kentucky Rockin' Rollers and the Nashville Rollergirls.  Additional photos can be found on Cory’s Flickr album.  Get future updates on Facebook by following The Rollergirl Project.




I'm proud of the things I've had the courage to try and the things I've accomplished at 46. It's how you feel. Not a judgement about what I "should" be doing at 46.

- Peaches & CreamYa, West Kentucky Rockin' Rollers


The reason I did this it was not for myself originally... If it was for me, I would have been at home but I have always been one to talk the talk that plus size ladies can play Roller Derby and it's hard for me to pass up a derby opportunity , especially hosted by my own team that I'm president and head of training and to know i could possibly Inspire or give someone the courage to step out of their comfort zone and realizing someone like me can do it they can do it as well. Was a good enough reason for me to dive out of my comfort zone no matter how uncomfortable I was ...I am in the best shape of my teenage/adult life ...whatever shape that might be... I will be honest and say that I actually did cry when I first saw the pictures... ive never been so vulnerable in my life and this photo shoot in the end taught me more lessons than I ever expected to learn... to love the body you're in ...embrace it... it can do amazing things.... there's no need to hide it this is me.  I'm not for everybody and that's ok as long as I love me at the end of the day

- BeastMode, ClarksVillians Roller Girls, 4 year veteran


As I went through these pictures I want to tell my team mates that they are beautiful! I saw pics of girls bigger than me doing things that I've heard people say " yeah Shiny can do that cause she's so small". Amazing skill knows no size, nor does beauty.

- Terrorize & Shiny, ClarksVillians Roller Girls, 3 year veteran


I know some of the skaters in my group did not feel good about the pictures. I'm not sure what they expected to see, but I really just want to encourage us all to put these pictures into context. None of us looked our best. That's why we don't usually go on dates immediately after scrimmages. But we do look strong and powerful and tough. Be proud of those things. Be proud of your athleticism and all the awesome things you can do with your body.

- Fleur De Lethal, Nashville Roller Girls, 3 year veteran




One of the things that stood out most to me as I was preparing for this photo shoot was the difference between the recommendations for making one's body look good for pictures (like fitness models) vs. the recommendations for preparing for a scrimmage in very hot and humid conditions (roller derby athletes). In a nutshell, a fitness model would lower their caloric intake to about 10 calories per lb about 10 days before the shoot, and in the days leading up to the shoot, they would lower their carbs, eat no salt whatsoever, and only drink about half as much water as normal (as little as 250 mL on the day of the shoot) to basically dehydrate themselves so their muscles look tighter. An athlete performing in these conditions, however, would want to increase their carbs in the days leading up to this event drink more water, and have more salt and electrolytes on that day to help with hydration. Realizing this made me realize how crazy it is that so many athletes I know have a negative image of themselves because they're comparing themselves to models.

It also made me really proud of myself that I chose to be an athlete over being a model on this day. Sometimes, I get compliments on how I look, and it can be hard to not mentally turn those compliments into expectations. There was definitely a time when, for the sake of looking good on camera, I would have risked all the horrible things I'm sure would have happened to me if I'd tried to prepare for this like a fitness model. But 3 days before the shoot, as I sat down to a meal of baked salmon, roasted potatoes, and green beans, all with some amount of salt, haha, I was just excited to get to skate with some of my favorite people one more time before I moved to a different state. Being derby strong isn't just a physical thing. Derby can change your mentality, too. I'm more appreciative for that than anything else.

- Fleur De Lethal, Nashville Roller Girls, 3 year veteran


I love my teammates. Do they have the "perfect" body? Well, yes, they do. In rollerderby there isn't one body type that fits the perfect mold for a skater. Some of us are tall and thin, others short and round. Guess what? They are both awesome! And, the thin one isn't always the jammer ether. Some of the best jammers I know are heavy set. And some really amazing blockers are short and thin. Any body type can be amazing at derby. Pre kids, post kids, short, tall, thin, thick, athletic background, or none, you can be amazing at roller derby too. It just takes hard work and dedication. So, if you think you don't have the body for derby, look again. Take a look at these pictures and know that you can do this too. My teammates are bad asses and I love them all dearly.

- Seam Ripper, Nashville Roller Girls, 2 year veteran



I'm making a real effort to not be so critical in the mirror. Derby has been a huge part of that. Now my critical eye sees the strength and athleticism others may not see. And yeah, to those outside the derby community, I may not look like an athlete. But I know I am. My teammates know I am. And anyone I get to hit on the track knows I am. And that makes the mirror a little less harsh.

- Deathalopod, ClarksVillians Roller Girls, 2 1/2 year veteran




My stretch marks and sagging skin doesn't stop me from placing myself in front of a jammer. Cellulite doesn't stop my legs from pushing themselves and trying to maneuver around blockers. My physical appearance doesn't make me happy, but it doesn't stop me from doing what I gotta do on the track.

- Megabyte, ClarksVillians Roller Girls, 1 1/2 year veteran




I have very little shame when it comes to my body. I don't like my tummy but that's not going to stop me from wearing a bikini (or sports bra and undies). I wish we could all be more comfortable in our skin. While at this photo shoot I heard so many voicing concerns over their body image, but our bodies did all the amazing things on the track! Our shapes and sizes give us each our own individual advantages. Some of us are faster while others are bulldozers lol. Embrace your body and embrace your ability

- Terrorize & Shiny, ClarksVillians Roller Girls, 3 year veteran

1 comment:

  1. Love the images, loved the athleticism, loved the strength, loved the beauty, loved the vulnerability and loved the ass kicking! Great shoot!