Featured Skater – April 2015

Our Featured Skater for April is Aeris Throttle
of the Blacksnake Rollergirls!

Name: Aeris Throttle
Teams: The Rushin' Rollettes
Number: 11
Position(s): Jammer, Blocker
Seasons with BRG: 4

How did you first discover BRG, and what has kept you going for four seasons?
“I heard through some friends that a league was starting in town. I’d attended a few practices with KCRW before, so I already had the derby bug, but I couldn’t make it work with the commute. When I heard about BRG I could not have been more excited! I remember going to my first practice in the tiny gym we started in with only a handful of girls, and I was so nervous, but I knew I loved it right away. Now it’s four seasons later and the league has grown considerably with the help of many amazing people. I love skating, I love the exercise, and I love the sport. I like being challenged. But at the end of the day, it’s the people –- the connections and relationships you’ve built — that make it most worthwhile. You become part of this very diverse community, and it becomes a big part of your life.”

Describe the origin of your derby name.
Aeris Throttle is a play on Aristotle. But Aeris is spelled that way as a tribute to a character in Final Fantasy VII.”

Who inspires you on the track?
“This is probably going to sound so cheesy, but honestly, I am inspired most by my teammates. I couldn’t pick just one person. Everyone has different skills and qualities that I find admirable, whether they are vets, coaches, or first year skaters. Each week I see everyone work so hard, and not just for themselves, but for each other. I see how they lift each other up both on and off the track. Everyone has positive attitudes and encourages one another, and strives to be better. We win together and we lose together –- it’s never about just one person. I think that kind of dedication and camaraderie is inspirational.”

How has roller derby changed your life?
“I’m definitely more confident and more assertive than I once was. I step out of my comfort zone more. I’ve learned a lot about myself — my weaknesses, my strengths — and not just as a skater. It’s been empowering and enlightening in so many ways. I know I’m a stronger person today, both mentally and physically, than I was four years ago, and roller derby has a lot to do with that.

I’ve met so many great people that I probably never would have got to know if it weren’t for derby. I have more female friends than I have ever had in my life (and more frenemies, haha). There’s a sense of family here, and I know there are people who have my back in good times and bad. That’s a really wonderful thing.

I think the real question is how hasn’t it changed my life? It’s so transformative. Roller derby has probably changed my life in ways I’m not even aware of. And I’m grateful for it.

To see more of Aeris Throttle and all the Blacksnake Rollergirls in action, visit our photo albums on Smugmug, like us on Facebook, and check out our newly-launched Pinterest and Instagram pages.

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