In this video, athletic brand Cyprus Another Angle interviews local quad roller-skating enthusiast Lola, who lifts the curtain on a sport that is as graceful as it is liberating and full of joy.
Quad skates are four-wheeled roller skates that traditionally feature a rubber brake in the front, making for an easy, quick stop. They have a larger footprint than inline skates, which increases the stability and confidence factor for skaters of all levels.
By contrast, inline skates typically have two to five polyurethane wheels, arranged in a single line by a metal or plastic frame on the underside of a boot, allowing for greater speed and manoeuvrability.
A native of Nicosia, Lola was always drawn to expressive movement, and found dance early in life, thanks to her mother’s love for the terpsichorean art. However, it was not until she visited Barcelona that she discovered the magic of old-school quad roller-skating.
Before her eyes, the upbeat moves of dreadlocked 50-year-olds carrying boomboxes and gliding expertly on eight, small wheels, convinced her that she had to try it for herself.
Flash forward to today and Lola is completely at home on her quad skates. “I’ve been skating eight years now, on and off,” she shares, but that actually translates to “thousands of kilometres”.
Unlike the historic African American roller rinks, Europe’s quad skating scene today is typically to be found outdoors, featuring rhythm dancing (descended from the roller discos of the Sixties and Seventies) and ‘aggressive’ or ‘street’ skating, featuring tricks.
As to why someone should try the free-wheeling sport themselves, other than fitness, the benefits of skating are akin to meditation in motion.
“You’re so focused on not falling, or to enjoy it,” she laughs “that your mind gets freed.”
Those keen to give the sport a try themselves are advised to seek out experienced skaters’ mentorship. “You should take it slowly” advises Lola. “It’s not very difficult to learn, but it takes the right people and the right training.”
Together with other experienced skaters, she offers classes on quad skating, and founded the Roller Skate Cyprus community, which has since spread to all of the island’s major cities. Looking ahead, given the freedom and creativity on offer, it’s safe to bet quad skating’s glide-by life will continue to catch on.
Learn more about the Cyprus quad skating community on Instagram: @rollerskatecyprus
View the original video on the Cyprus Another Angle YouTube channel here.
And to keep up with all the inspiring athletic happenings across the island, follow Cyprus Another Angle:
On Instagram: www.instagram.com/cyprus.another.angle/
On Facebook: www.facebook.com/cyprus.another.angle
On YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UChj1VvYKez6V0per-Zhty5w?pbjreload=102
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