Hand’s up who has ever hit the coping too fast at their local skatepark and hit the ground, hard?
There’s no shame in it folks, we’ve all done it. But at least skateboarders can run out of it, right?
For this group of radical skaters, that’s not an option. They’ve swapped the four-wheels of a board for eight-wheels strapped to their feet.
Now they are tearing up the concrete as part of roller skating’s newest community, Chicks in Bowls
They’ve swapped four-wheels of a skateboard for eight-wheels strapped to their feet
Much like any other skater, they tackle skateparks by seeing a trick and trying it out themselves.
Inspiration is drawn from skateboarding and aggressive inline tricks, like 180s & 360s, inverts and flips, various stalls on the coping, grinds and grabs.
Chicks in Bowls began as a fun little side project in Auckland, New Zealand, led by one of the country’s top roller derby skaters, Lady Trample (whose real name is Samara Pepperell).
Along with a close group of roller derby friends, Lady Trample instantly became hooked on skating bowls and ramps. They began posting photos and videos online.
Soon other skaters in New Zealand were following, asking how to get into skating parks. Then, through the magic of social media, people overseas began messaging the group, wanting to get involved.
Soon after that, the group’s first international chapter was created – in Argentina, of all places.
They are all like family to me and I don’t know what I would do without all of the lovely ladies in my life
Chapters are like forums for skaters to organise meet ups, share tips, tricks, bails and stories
“They allow travelling skaters to meet up with the locals and find the best spots. Because the sport is still very new and grass-roots, it’s less intimidating being a newbie as the crews are all growing together,” says Lady Trample.
Now there are more than 150 chapters across New Zealand and Australia, the United States, South America, Europe and South Africa.
“We have a core group of girls that pitch in a lot of time, efforts and energy into keeping the wheels turning. They are all like family to me and I don’t know what I would do without all of the lovely ladies in my life,” says Gloria Zef, organiser of the Southern Californian chapter.
What’s the reaction been from skateboarders at the parks? Lady Trample thinks it’s been fairly supportive.
“They appreciate what I can do, and acknowledge the complexity of some of the moves – it’s not easy on rollerskates!” she says.
“Having their support is huge. We’ve got male skateboarders and roller skaters backing us and giving us props for what we’re doing.”
We’ve got male skateboarders and roller skaters backing us and giving us props for what we’re doing
Can anyone get involved, regardless of experience?
“Absolutely! We encourage anyone, no matter your gender or age: just hook up with your local crew and learn together. Let’s spread the stoke and dominate the world!”
Watch what the Chicks in Bowls crew can do below…