London: Roller derby to James Bond chase scene – it’s your playground

Posted on February 22, 2007

2


by jnoelbell

For all its great history, sometimes London can be very… well, traditional.

And sometimes, you just want to shake loose and do something a little different, explore (or create!) a new niche in an old city full of old things. With spring creeping around the corner, here are three offbeat activities to try, to get you off the couch and out the door – new exploits for a new season.

Looking for something a little bit retro, a little bit rock n’ roll? Everything old is new again! Check out the London Rollergirls, a funky group of women who are single-handedly working to bring back the lost art of flat track roller derby.

Hot on the heels of a successful resurgence in the States, rollerskates are making a comeback! It’s punk rock on wheels, and there’s no experience necessary to join in the fun, or just polish up your rusty skating skillz.

If you’re enthusiastic, resilient and motivated, you’ll fit right in. Tough girls welcome, tattoos optional.

England may not be renowned for its winter sports, but that doesn’t mean there’s no place for a snow bunny to play.

Always wanted to learn to snowboard but never made it to the Alps? Try Sno!Zone at Milton Keynes, just a short jaunt from central London. Real snow on indoor slopes and they’re open year round – lessons are available so you can be a pro for next winter’s group ski trip to Chamonix. For more advanced boarders, there’s even a freestyle park for nailing tricks.

They’ve got everything you need for shussing the slopes, so get your adrenaline fix just 15 minutes from Euston station.

If you’re after something really “off the wall”, try the hottest new urban sport going: parkour.

Also known as “free running”, it’s an intense, dynamic, and ever-changing, ever-challenging sport built around the concepts of running and flowing over stationary obstacles in a completely fluid way.

Scaling walls, jumping stairs and leaping large gaps in a single bound, it’s part guerrilla assault, part rigorously disciplined athleticism.  Superman crossed with a long distance marathoner.  And now Urban Freeflow, *the* original parkour organisation, is offering indoor and outdoor classes for all ages here in London.  Don your cape and take part in one of the most exciting new urban trends since the evolution of hip-hop.  Make the concrete jungle your concrete playground.

Advertisements