Edinburgh roller derby team in TV documentary

Auld Reekie Roller Girls will feature in a TV documentary on the sport. Picture: Jason Ruffell
Auld Reekie Roller Girls will feature in a TV documentary on the sport. Picture: Jason Ruffell
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A ROLLER derby team from the Capital is to feature in a new documentary about the fast-growing sport.

Roller Derby Til I Die, which premieres on Friday night, delves into the lives of the women taking part in the high-tempo, hard-hitting sport, which is played around the world.

The fourth episode, shown on the Extreme Sports channel, sees members of the London Rollergirls League travel to the Capital home of the Auld Reekie Roller Girls for a skaters’ “boot camp”.

It also features interviews with Capital competitors, including captain Lianne Parry, aka Crazylegs, from Cramond.

Ms Parry, who has been playing for just over five years, said: “When the programme makers asked if it would be possible to come up and film at boot camp we said ‘yes’ immediately. We’re all really looking forward to seeing the finished show.

“Not everyone has the Extreme Sports channel, so the people who do will probably find the rest of team descending on their house.

“They filmed the boot camp after-party too, so I’ll be interested to see if any of that goes in.”

Roller derby is an all-female sport that involves teams competing on an oval track in a series of “jams” – two-minute periods that see teams of five players racing to score points.

During each jam, one player on each team is designated as the “jammer” who scores a point for every member of the opposing team she passes.

Ms Parry said: “It’s hard to put it into words, roller derby means so many things to so many people. That’s one reason I’m so pleased the series will focus on a different person in each episode – each one will probably give a different reason why they love it.”

Roller Derby Til I Die begins on the Extreme Sports Channel at 9pm on Friday.

• Auld Reekie Roller Girls’ Twisted Thistles will be taking on Brighton Rockers on October 26 at Meadowbank Stadium. Tickets are £5, under-14s go free.

‘FRESH MEAT’ JEN O’CYDE SAYS

EVENING News reporter Jen Lavery – aka Jen O’Cyde – took up roller derby in May. Here, she gives a first-hand account of the sport.

“It’s a great way to make new friends and get fitter. I’ve never been sporty – I absolutely dreaded PE at school – but this is totally different.

“All body types and levels of fitness are welcome – being a bigger girl can actually be an advantage – and everyone is very encouraging and supportive. Plus there are lots of off-track social events. They will work you until you are a sweaty mess, but they’ll take you out for a pint after.

“I’m still at what’s called the ‘fresh meat’ stage, so haven’t quite made a team yet, but that doesn’t actually matter that much. I can already see that I’ve improved so much since I started.

“Things I once thought were impossible – left-leg crossovers – are now almost second nature. I’m in better shape now – in my early 30s – than I’ve ever been.”