Roller derby: Fast-paced rodeo on wheels

Roller derby: Fast-paced rodeo on wheels

SPRINGFIELD, Ore. - Roller derby is like hockey without the puck on a rink without ice, and instead of sticks, these girls unleash their hardest hitting weapon: their bodies.

"It is a physical sport. Its full contact. We wear protective gear," said veteran derby girl Joy Toy. "Kneepads, elbow pads, wrist guards, mouth guard, helmet are required."

Required. Not optional.

But plenty of derby girls wear additional protective gear, like shin guards.

One thing everyone on the track has in common: flair.

"Everybody in roller derby is so different." said derby girl "Tatty Munster," who helps coach the rookie team.  "We have so many different types of people it doesn't matter how old you are, what shape or size."

Waitresses, stay-at-home moms, therapists, even educators are just some of the women that compose this intimidating roster.

Thinking about trying out? Grab your mouth guard! Newbies are reffered to as "'fresh meat" on these tracks!

"It's very intimidating. The first piece that people deal with is falling," said derby girl 'Joy Toy'. "It's very scary to go from five feet up straight down to your hands and your knees."

The in's and out's of derby are complicated, but think of it as running (skating) around a track (rink), trying to pass your other team mates (an opposing pack) and using your body parts to body slam an opposing team member off track.

Just make sure it's within the legal hitting zone.

"You'll see hits, you'll see hip-hits you will see ladies doing 'sternum busters,' " explained Joy Toy. "When you do derby, you give up all rights of body ownership, just so you know."

Sound painful? You betcha!

Here's how it works:

There are 14 girls to a roster. Each roster is composed of blockers, pivots and a jammer. The jammer has to make her way through the blockers to the front of the pack on their initial pass around the rink without committing any penalties. For each women you pass with your hips, you score a point.

Sound easy?

These girls do anything to throw you off course, and when you get your face painted to the floor, there's only one rule.

"You take it and join back up," said Joy Toy. "Your body boundaries are about two feet and that gets completely taken away from you when you're in a pack."

As the name you go by every day, forget it. No one has the same name in Women's Flat Track Derby.

"You do kind of create a persona to your pseudonym," said Joy Toy who dresses up as a porcelin doll during derby 'bouts.

Even KVAL's Katie Boer transformed to "Bad News Boer."