Fitness on rollerskates is the new hot trend – but is it as easy as it looks?
There’s a second there, while I’m gliding along the floorboards of a high school gym, crouched down in a small ball, when I think I’ve got it. All I need to do now is balance on one skate, stretch my other leg out and and hold my toe stopper to attempt a classic roller move called ‘shooting the duck’. Sounds easy enough.
I think of Olivia Newton John in Xanadu, Gene Kelly in It’s Always Fair Weather and those badass girls in Whip It. I am one with my skates. I am a graceful swan in athleisure. I am Farrah Fawcett.
At least, I am for one miraculous second. Then, my skate catches underneath me and fall on my bum, waving my arms around like propellers on my way down. It’s a hard bang that hasn’t gone unnoticed, but no one hurries over to help me up. The reason is because this isn’t the first fall of the day, nor will it be the last.
I’m at Mount Alexander College in Flemington for a RollerFit class. These one-hour classes – which are already a staple in Sydney's exercise world – are built around increasing cardio endurance, flexibility, core strength, agility and balance on four-wheels, with each session running through a range of skating drills, exercises and team activities.
As it turns out, you don’t need to be a whiz on skates to partake in RollerFit. The only prerequisite is the ability to laugh at yourself once you’ve taken your upteenth tumble.
We work our way through basic drills, core exercises and stopping (though skating into the gym’s walls is a good fall back plan). I start sweating at the get-go, moving muscles I never knew existed and high-fiving fellow skaters who’ve also taken falls. Bruises are fair game here, as is the unwavering support from RollerFit’s talented instructors.
Even though I’ve spent the majority of the class on my backside, I make plans to return the following week for another try. I mentally prepare myself for the incoming bum bruises, which I’ll no doubt be showing off, gleefully, to anyone who asks.
What is it? Fun aerobic workouts on four wheels.
Why go? To become the ‘70s disco champ you always knew you could be.