Don’t let his name fool you. When it comes to roller derby, Race City Rebel jammer One Nate Stand is all business. “All it takes are the words ‘five seconds!’ I hear that in my head and that’s all it takes to trigger an adrenaline rush.” Nate is referring to the final five seconds before the first whistle blows and sends the pack of skaters, made up of four blockers from each team, rolling. When the second whistle blows, signifying the two jammers (the “point scorers”) may begin making their way around the track, there’s nothing like “whipping through a pack and leaving the opposing jammer to be brutalized by your blockers as you rack up grand slam after grand slam (equivalent to five points). Watching your whole team work as one…that’s the best,” Nate finished.
Nate has fond memories of skating as a child, especially when he and elementary school friends would all hit the rink together. “There were flashing lights and neon and, of course, the best ’80’s music,” he recalled. “The rink was a place I could tear out onto the wood floor and totally cut loose.” As he got older, Nate’s priorities began to change and his trips to the rink began to diminish. He graduated from Purdue University in 1999 with a degree in Electrical Engineering Technology and opened his own designing and installation company, Nathan Robison, Inc. In 2009, his life changed forever as his friend Christie Belle told him about the Rebels and it piqued his interest. “I really wasn’t sure about it until I received some nudging and guidance from Red ‘Stang (a friend and member of the Circle City Derby Girls.) She made me feel comfortable enough to land myself at my first practice and stick it out long enough to catch ‘derby fever.'”
Catch it he did. Nate’s first memories of skating with the Rebels consisted of “falling down a lot,” he laughed. However, as roller derby players and fans know, it’s not how many times one falls…it’s how many times one gets back up. Nate feels his early tumbles on the track helped him develop his quick recoveries. “I tried my best to learn as quickly as possible and pick up skills by watching my talented teammates,” he explained. Although admittedly an overwhelmed and intimidated “newbie,” Nate has used these past fifteen months to hone his skills and credits great coaching, training and strategy as the components that made him the skater he is today. Check out his mad skills here,
Rebels teammate Hawt Rod praises Nate’s love for the sport. “He is dedicated to derby and his work ethic shows. Nate is one of those guys on the team who is not only pushing himself to be better, but to make his teammates around him better as well.” The Hawt Rod joined the Rebels several months ago and has quickly distinguished himself as a triple-threat. During his early days, however, “Nate was one of the first team members to make conversation with me. He was supportive and offered encouragement as he had already walked this road,” Hawt Rod finished.
So what does Nate do when he’s not on eight wheels? “I love to run and bike, but with work and derby, I have little time for much else,” he admitted. “When I do find a spare moment, I’ll do something special, like visiting with my family…or perhaps the dishes. But I doubt it,” he laughed. He doesn’t worry about the connotation of his derby name either. “I’m engaged to the most amazing woman I’ve ever known,” he shared. “She stole my heart and transformed an erratic scatterbrain into a less erratic scatterbrain.” Nate’s fiance’ is also involved in roller derby so stay tuned…we may just see an on-skates wedding…or not.
The Rebels completed their 2010-2011 season on July 30th with an outstanding 378-22 victory over Kansas City, MO’s Cowtown Butchers. However, the team is always recruiting new skaters and volunteers. If you’re interested in joining or finding out more about the league, click here. As for One Nate Stand, look for him to be an even stronger force in the season to come. “I don’t want to give derby all the credit, but in the past fifteen months I’ve been skating with the Rebels, my life has felt more complete and I have become so thankful for everything that I have. I am one smitten ‘derbist.'”