13 June 2013
Nambour’s Jessica Doak is one of more than a dozen University of the Sunshine Coast students and staff who have thrown themselves into the fast and furious sport of roller derby.
The 25-year-old USC Psychology student and administration officer has spent the past year honing her skills in the contact sport played by teams of mostly women roller skating around a flat track.
“I was surprised to realise our league, the Coastal Assassins, now has about 14 students and staff from the University,” said Jessica, who plays A Grade.
The team, which holds a training game every Sunday at the USC Sports Stadium, will play its next bout against Brisbane and Toowoomba on Saturday 22 June from 4.30pm at the Caloundra Indoor Sports Complex.
“We got more than 400 people to the last competition, so it’s definitely becoming popular on the Coast,” she said.
Jessica, who aims to use her USC degree for a career as a clinical psychologist, said joining roller derby had many benefits including friendship, camaraderie, fitness and competitiveness.
“I love studying here and playing roller derby on weekends is an adrenalin rush as well as stress relief,” she said.
“You have to be committed, though. I train six a hours a week, minimum, so my life is all about time management.”
The Coastal Assassins Roller Derby league, formed in 2010 by a group of friends on the Sunshine Coast, also aims to promote female empowerment.
— Julie Schomberg