We have a sponsorship with Derby Warehouse, who has the lowest prices around, incredible customer service AND offers us a 20% discount (contact firstname.lastname@example.org for the code)! Please note that the discounted price will not be reflected immediately in your cart; you will be sent a 2nd confirmation email with your discounted pricing.
Things to consider when buying skates:
Speed boot vs. artistic boot – a speed boot, which is a lower cut boot with a low or no heel, is ideal for speed/distance skating and roller derby. An artistic boot (i.e. the traditional roller skate boot), is a higher cut boot with a heel, that is ideal for jam/dance skating, and skatepark/ramp skating. Both types of skates are appropriate for class, and both types can be used for all skating disciplines, they just have pros and cons depending on what you are looking to do. We recommend thinking about what you are most interested in doing on wheels and buying the best skates for that purpose.
Nylon plate vs. metal plate – Most entry level skates come with a nylon plate, or a low-cost, heavy metal plate. If you’re starting off with less expensive (>$300) skates, we highly recommend looking for something with a nylon plate. Nylon plates are generally more durable than cheap metal plates, and have the advantage of being considerably lighter. The heavier your skates are, the more tiring skating will be for you at first (especially skating outside).
Toe stop – We do not recommend buying any skates that have a fixed, bell-style toe stop. Make sure to get a skate that has a plate with an adjustable toe stop, as this is a skate that will last you much longer on your skating journey and allows you to more easily customize and upgrade your skates as you learn.
Below are some skates we have personally had good luck with, that we’ll talk about in more detail. But in general, anything in the Recreational or Competitive categories of complete skate packages at DerbyWarehouse.com will be appropriate for class. Feel free to email us at email@example.com with any questions before you buy!
This is a great skate package, ideal for people who intend on skating recreationally one or two times a week. If you are a beginner and/or plan on skating outside, we really recommend buying a set of Poison wheels with these skates. They will make you a more confident skater and help strengthen your legs in the Vault, and transition easily to skating outside without having to change your wheels. We also recommend purchasing a toe-guard with this skate package.
If you are considering going into competitive roller derby, we highly recommend these skates, which can last you for years of play and regular skating. The Derby package is worth it for the cost of the toe-guard alone, plus they come with an upgraded wheel that is suitable for skating at the Vault when you are a more experienced skater. If you are a beginner and/or plan on skating outside, we really recommend buying a set of Poison wheels with these skates. They will make you a more confident skater and help strengthen your legs in the Vault, and transition easily to skating outside without having to change your wheels.
If you are considering buying any other skates, please talk to Havoc and Beatty first to see if they will be appropriate for class/derby. Also be sure to meet with us and determine your size first before buying!
We recommend any S1 or Triple 8 helmets sold on Derby Warehouse that say “Dual-Certified” after the name. If you are considering playing competitive derby in the future, we highly recommend going with an S1 Lifer Helmet. All helmets fit slightly differently, so let us know what you’re thinking of buying and we’ll try to find that brand for you to try on.
Of all your pads, knee pads are where to spend your money! At minimum, you need the Triple 8 KP 22 Knee Pads; they are a great starter pad that many of us have used for years. If you have knee or lower back issues, or are considering pursuing competitive roller derby, we recommend starting with an upgraded pad now so you won’t have to buy a second set later. The 187 Pro Derby Knee Pads are very popular within the Gang and league, and offer a substantial amount of cushioning as compared to the KP22s. The 187s also have a replaceable cap which allows the pads to last longer because you don’t need to replace the whole pad if your cap cracks. Smith Scabs or Derby and S1 Derby knee pads are also popular and provide upgraded protection. Again, size varies widely across brands so please make sure you try on first!
Any of the elbow pads at Derby Warehouse are appropriate for SSG, and it’s okay to go cheaper here, as long as they are well fitting. We just recommend choosing an elbow pad with a hard protective cap. Many skaters in the gang use the Triple 8 EP55 Elbow Pads or the 187 Killer Elbow Pads. We have a variety to try on in the Vault.
We recommend Triple 8, Smith or 187 Wrist Guards. Many people in the Gang use the Triple 8 Wristsaver, Triple 8 Roller Derby Wristsaver or 187 Killer Derby Wrist Guards. Pick a style that is most comfortable for you and least hot—wrist guards, surprisingly, become one of the stinkiest parts of gear. We have a few brands to try on in the Vault.
These are the only mouth guards we recommend now because everyone eventually ends up getting one, and they are the mouth guard that stays in your mouth the most often (and therefore protects you the best). SISU mouth guards are the easiest to talk and drink with while keeping them in, and there are virtually no gagging issues. If you aren’t able to buy one of these yet due to finances, we sell boil & bite mouth guards at the Vault for $1 that you can use until you have some extra cash for one of these. Members of the Gang also have experience with Shockdoctor mouth guards, which we can show you or answer questions on.
Virtually all of these items MAY be available for purchase cheaper on Amazon or eBay – we just ask you to verify that you are getting the same quality item if you purchase them elsewhere because we don’t want you to end up with inferior gear not suitable for practice. If you find other, less expensive gear you are considering, feel free to send a link to firstname.lastname@example.org and we can check it out and let you know if it will be adequate for class (please do so before buying). We fully recognize that getting involved in skating/derby can be a steep upfront investment, so if there is any way we can help by letting you borrow some gear for a period of time or help you find used skates to purchase instead, please let us know. We don’t like the cost to be a roadblock for anyone and always try to find a way to get people rolling!