On Saturday, September 25, the community is invited to attend the inaugural Skate Jam at the Roller Rink at Canalside, hosted by LaLa Woods of La’Movement Fitness. This is the perfect opportunity to get into the rolling action, before the seasonal shift to ice skating occurs.
According to Lala, the outdoor roller skating rink is also a great way to get into shape, while enjoying the great outdoors. For years, Lala has been encouraging people to ‘Get Up and Get Active’ (GUGA) via a range of activities, including roller skating, which she says “… has deep roots in the African American Community and has become a reemerging theme for everyone at La’Movement Fitness.
The focus of the G.U.G.A Foundation is combating childhood obesity, building confidence, and bringing healthy lifestyle awareness to underserved communities of color.
“The popularity of roller skating has grown across the country, especially through the pandemic, but in the African American community it has always been more than just something trendy to do. Roller skating fosters a sense of community that has been woven throughout generations. The ability for those in the self-proclaimed skate community to come together in a safe environment is paramount to its sustainability.”
Lala says that roller skating is empowering for youth, but is also a fun way for adults to enjoy a youthful activity. She notes that roller skating brings “unapologetic joy and body positivity among Black and brown children who may be new to skating. Through the pandemic I started skating inside the house! It was low impact on my knee and brought me so much joy. Being able to reconnect with the community and the freedom it brings makes it that much better. My goal is that the love for skating and skate culture translates to the next generation of skaters. Through skating they can build their confidence, form bonds with other skaters, and create healthy habits of staying active through creative outlets.”
Just Roll With It – a first of its kind roller skating clinic for girls, sponsored by WNY Girls in Sports.
The Skate Jam is open to everyone, including those who have not had the opportunity to enjoy roller skating previously. The event is part of a series of healthy initiatives that Lala is introducing as part of her non-profit arm (G.U.G.A Foundation). The foundation is in place to combat childhood obesity through fun exercise events, including the “You Can Dance Girl” Mommy & Me program, and “Just Roll With It” (a skating clinic for girls, sponsored by WNY Girls in Sports).
“We are so excited about the re-birth of skate culture in Buffalo, NY and we are truly honored to have the support of United Way and Highmark, along with organizations such as Queen City Roller Derby, Good Vibes Rollin, Rainbow Rink and Zone One Skating,” said Lala.
The JWRI Skate Jam for the community, will be held at Canalside on Saturday, September 25, 2021. The event will be free to the public, from 3pm to 7pm. Guests must register in order to participate – register at this website. There will be free skate rental, games, and food trucks, along with a ceremony recognizing the participants of the skate clinic.