Malice - Yes!!! Started a men’s derby league

The first time I ever saw a scrimmage of men’s derby was 2 years ago. Men’s derby had just come up and we were all very curious about what was going to happen. Most men on the track were, or still are, pretty good refs, so for some reason I expected a lot. I still have no clue why I had that expectation. First whistle was blown….aaaand the mayhem started. Literally. You could smell the testosterone in the air so to speak. Where is this going to start? Are they really serious about playing? Will this end well? Where are the medics?! Some random questions going through my mind. But finally, way after this, my mindset took a 360 turn.

During the last few years, men’s leagues were formed slowly here in the Netherlands. The first one started in Groningen and the second in Eindhoven. There were more games to watch, and I participated as an NSO or as a ref in a couple of them. Good to mention is that the teams needed practice, they took it, and the results were visible within a very short time.

Team NL was also formed and played at the World Championships this year and finished 11th! A fine showing with still only 2 leagues to draw from. Long before the Championships I became convinced that men’s derby is just way awesome, I really love it and it made me sort of sad that there are just 2 leagues as opposed 20 women's leagues. Regardless, the fact that there was, and is a growing interest in men’s derby, made me think to simply start one.

People sometimes ask me why. I’m a woman so why start a men’s league, or helping to get one started. Well, why not? Derby isn’t only for women in my opinion. We all know well enough there are other opinions around like it actually should be women only. This is not just from inside the community but from the outside as well. And I believe this isn’t right. Sports, no matter which one, should be open for attendance by every gender, race or sexuality (and by that I mean gay, transgender etc.). Within derby, we luckily already share that mindset, but it remains mostly women, (at least here in the Netherlands) and I would love to make a difference in that.

You can see this enthusiasm to start a men’s league as my support for men’s derby and I'm making it happen. There is a difference in style and substance when you watch the gameplay of women and men. Even better is the co-ed: a mix of men and women, therefore, there is also a difference in training, but the benefit is that we can learn so much from eachother! Embrace that opportunity to learn and become a faster and stronger team (for example). Yes it’s a lot of work starting a league, and yes you have to be creative and such, but  that’s the whole challenge of starting a league in general!

All off this finally made me decide to form a men’s league in Arnhem: Airbomb Rollers. Me and my 2 partners in crime made this happen in January this year and in March we were alive and kicking for real. On the 28th of April our first Fresh Meat day will be a fact!


About The Author

DOB: 6/23/1982

Hello lovely people,

I'm Malice, a skater, supportmember and trainer with the Arnhem Fallen Angels. Co-founder, secretary and headreferee from the new men's league Airbomb Rollers. And next to that, doing load of other things to fill my days with. Even non-derby things ;) Got some questions or just want to have some small-talk, let me know!


Comments (2)
Share what you think

Add comment

Please Login or Register To Add A Comment

Veggie Delight

Why not live outside of the norm.  Good job and best of luck!


Thank you :)