5 Great Ideas for Finding Roller Skate Friends Near You!
Are you new to roller skating, or skating in a new city and looking for a crew? Roller skating is a great social activity, and it's fun to learn with friends. If you are trying to find people to roller skate with, we have some great ideas for you!
The internet is often the best place to find people to roller skate with. Search for local Facebook groups or Derby teams, check out Instagram hashtags, or post on your local subreddit. In-person places include local skate shops or skate parks, public parks or paths, and the roller skating rink.
1. Social Media sites such as Instagram, Facebook, Reddit, and MeetUp
Instagram is queen when it comes to online skate communities. Every roller skater seems to have an account, and you can easily fill your feed with tutorials and inspiring videos. Finding local pals can be more challenging on Instagram if you don't live in a metro area or skating mecca, but try searching local hashtags to see if other skaters in your area are posting there. If you want to start a community, you can create a skate account for your town. Be sure to use a local hashtag that others will be likely to search, such as #rollerskateaberdeen and location tag all of your posts. Promote your skate account to others in your community by sharing it on Facebook and Reddit, and by following local people and organizations that may be interested in the sport.
Facebook can be an easier place to organize with local, in person roller skaters. If you can't find local roller skating Facebook group, you can start one and people will find it when they search. When I was starting our local community, I began first by gathering everyone on an instagram account, because the roller skaters were much more visible on that platform. Then I encouraged everyone to also join a Facebook group so that they could all post about meet ups and questions.
Searching for derby players or teams is a great place to start if you don't know any local skaters. Roller Derby players often have public Facebook and Instagram profiles and are involved with the local skate scene. If you are brave enough, you can even try out for the derby team! Derby is a great way to learn to skate and make friends.
Another online resource for roller skate friends is Reddit. If you don't have a local roller skating subreddit, try putting a post in your town or city's subreddit to see if there are roller skaters in your area who want to meet up. This was how it all began for me, with one post in our local subreddit, I learned that there were a lot of people who were also looking for people to skate with. Keep in mind that if you are signing up for Reddit for the first time, you have to wait 24 hours before making a post.
If your town has MeetUp, check to see if there is a Roller Skate group. If not, you can start one! MeetUp is a handy organization tool because it gives you access to a diverse member base who are there to find local activities, not just to scroll. Try hosting a meet up at a local park or school basketball court on the weekend. You could also host a meet up at you roller rink's public session. You will have confidence going into session with a group, and roller rinks often provide tables and food, so you can use the opportunity to get to know people better.
2. The Roller Skating rink public sessions or classes
If you are lucky enough to have a rink in your town or within close enough driving distance, you can find a community of skaters there. Head out for an open session, many rinks have all ages and adult sessions during the week. Visit your rink or check out their website to find out if they offer any classes. Roller skating classes are a great way to meet people, and can be less intimidating than trying to talk to strangers at public session. Chances are, if skaters are in your class, they are at your level and are looking for others to skate with.
Your local derby players are also often at public sessions, they are easy to spot because they are all geared up! Don't hesitate to approach a derby player to talk about roller skating! They are passionate and friendly, and may know of local skate groups or meet ups that aren't advertised online.
3. Local skate shops
Head down to the roller skate shop and ask about roll outs or meet ups. You might find info about derby leagues, classes, or local places where roller skaters frequent. Not every town has a roller skate shop, but almost every town has a skateboard shop. If that's all you have, head down anyway and ask the people there about the local roller skate scene. Even though they may not be roller skaters themselves, they are likely to know of anyone in town who skates. Skaters of all kinds head to skateboard shops for help with bearings, extra bolts and parts, and safety gear. They are also a great place to put up a flyer for a roll out that you host! Could be the start of something great.
4. Parks or public paths where you see people roller skating
Not everyone will feel comfortable approaching strangers in parks, but it has been my experience that if a person is wearing skates, you can go talk to them about skating. When I was first starting a skating group, I had an Instagram account and Facebook page, and I printed the info for them on little cards and I would hand them out anytime I saw someone roller skating. Our community has grown to almost 300 members just in my town. It's amazing how many people you will find who roller skate or who want to get into roller skating. In my experience, people who are skating alone would like other people to skate with, but haven't found them yet- just like you!
5. Recruit people you already know!
Sometimes you have to start by getting the friends you already have to join in the fun! There is a pair of skates in almost every price range these days, and the rink has rental skates for people who don't have their own. Sometimes it's just as easy as inviting your friends to a fun night at the rink to plant the skate bug. Make it a weekly event and you will have a solid skate crew by the time summer rolls around. If you friends are new to skating, invite them to join you at one of the classes offered by your rink. They will be able to use rental skates for the class, and it might be just the confidence boost they need to get their own pair and start on the roller skate journey. If everyone has a pair of skates already, you can host a class in your garage or a local park. There is a wealth of tutorials and classes available on Instagram and Youtube that you can use to learn with your friends.