Skates & Safety Gear
What kind of skates and safety gear do I need?
There are an endless number of options when shopping for skates and gear, and if you ask 5 veteran skaters for advice, you'll probably get 5 different recommendations. As you gain experience you'll develop your own skating style and will learn about which skates and gear will be best for you. However, we can point you in the right direction for some rookie gear as you're getting started, and you can upgrade later. You will be able to find some of these items locally, but some will need to be purchased online.
MOUTH GUARD: must fit securely over your upper set of teeth. You can grab a cheap mouthguard at Walmart for a couple of dollars. That will work just fine, and will be great to have on hand as a back-up if you upgrade later. Many of our skaters have SISU mouthguards - you can talk, drink, and breathe while wearing them.
HELMET: needs to be fitted to your head. Check online measurement guides for proper fitting. Triple 8 and S1 are brands commonly worn by derby skaters.
WRIST GUARDS/ELBOW PADS/KNEE PADS: must fit securely. A couple of popular brands for derby pads are Triple 8 and 187. Quality knee pads are highly recommended - knees are important and hard to replace! Knee gaskets or braces can be worn under knee pads for added protection.
SKATES: we use quad derby skates. Many new skaters buy a rookie package or basic starter skates to beat up while they're getting started, and upgrade down the road. You can purchase boots/plates/wheels separately or as a package - if you're new to this, a package may be easiest and you can customize parts of your skates later. Riedell R3s are commonly used by rookie skaters. You can also search online for "rookie packages" at mainland skate shops. Check measurement guides for sizing or try on some of our skates at practice. Skates come in men's sizes, so your skate size is usually about 2 sizes smaller than your regular shoe size. Get duct tape or toe caps to help your skates last longer, especially if you'll be practicing outdoors.
If you're thinking about Rookie Camp, you may want to order gear beforehand so it arrives in time for your first practice.