One of my favorite things about roller skating is the people within the skating community. Everyday I'm amazed by the absolute talent that this community is flooded with. But what really blows me away is the realness that we see from so many people. Gabi Mattos is just one of those skaters that really shows it for what is it. She's gone above and beyond showing us a glimpse into everyday of her roller skating, and even while recovering from an injury she's continued to show us her journey.
When I made this blog I knew I wanted it to be for a tool for other skaters to learn from, and I couldn't think of a better way to do that than to ask other skaters about their experiences so far. We all take away different lessons and have different perspectives, and we can all learn from so much from each other! Although I want to mostly focus on smaller and unknown skaters, Gabi is definitely someone I needed to talk to first. I sent a few questions to Gabi and I hope you all enjoy her answers as much as I do!
1. What Got You Into Roller Skating? When did you start?
I was on Instagram back in late March and I kept getting impala’a advertised to me and they were so cute! At the time I was really into taking cute pictures and thought they would photograph so well but couldn’t justify buying them just for pictures so I scraped the idea. Only a few weeks later I saw Ana Cotos ‘Jenny on the block’ TikTok that went viral and I was suddenly sold. There was something about watching her skate that made it look so fun and easy and I just had a feeling I would be able to get a handle on it so I finally bought them. My only mistake was not ordering them in March before she went viral.
2. What’s your favorite trick to do? What trick do you want to learn next?
My favourite trick changes all the time. Before I sprained my ankle I was really enjoying carving but I’m not sure what it’ll be when I’m back on skates. Right now I’m only focusing on backtracking and relearning things after my injury but once I’m all caught up I want to learn the trick that caused my ankle sprain which is jumping backwards of the coping.
3. What’s something that you’ve struggled with on your skating journey?
For me, the fear of falling has been and continues to be my biggest challenge. Fear in general, the fear that I am not progressing, the fear that I’m not good enough to ever be at the skill level I aspire to be, fear that I’ll get hurt. The brain is one powerful thing and I do know better but anxiety has too much control.
4. What are some of your favorite songs to skate to?
I’ll usually just listen to new music that I’ve downloaded that week. I have a habit of cycling through music very fast so I don’t really listen to the same songs that often. But my favourite genre is indie pop, edm, rnb or other random Spotify playlist that I pick based on the type of skating I’m doing.
5. What’s your current skate set up?
Moxi Lolly in Clementine, blue moxi fundae wheels, CIB slide block, break petal toe stop, pink derby laces and my butterfly lace wings. Moonlight roller night fever with the wheels and laces they came with, jam plugs and a lace charm with a cat in a witch’s hat.
6. What advice would you give someone who just started roller skating?
Take your time and go at your own pace. Learning something new won’t happen overnight, it takes time, dedication and patience which will be different from skater to skater. If you don’t have this mind set you’ll find yourself getting frustrated and this is what causes people to give up.
7. Has roller skating impacted your life or your outlook on life at all?
Skating has definitely changed my life. I was under the impression that learning something new as an adult would be impossible, but turns out you’re never too old to learn something new which has caused me to want to learn so much more beyond skating.
8. What else do you like to do when you’re not roller skating?
I’m queen of hobbies, it’s actually ridiculous at this point. I also like to sing and write my own songs, I write poetry, I read, I paint sometimes, I like doing crafts and DIY projects, I create on TikTok, I love to travel in a non covid world, I like going to music festivals and dancing, spending time with friends, I’m trying to teach myself how to read tarot, I like spending time with my sister and more recently I started digital drawing. Basically I LOVE to be doing things at all times and I am a very creative/ expressive person.
9. Do you have a favorite style of skating? Why is that your favorite?
Skate park skating has a special place in my heart which is ironic cuz it’s probably the most dangerous one. I love it because there’s no time to be board of what you’re doing and often times other styles will bore me sooner.
10. Dream skate session?
I feel like I don’t have a enough experience with all of my skates but for now I’ll say I’d love to be skating in my moxis near a beach with all of my closes skate friends as well as some online skate friends I’ve made over the last few months (you’d be invited too)
11. Finally, who are some roller skaters you admire?
Oh boy, there are too many. Barbie Patin and spicyvey are both my skate park inspo. But I also admire rollaleems, okamackie and ellyskates (the last two are local skaters) There are more but I’ll stick with these ones as my main ones.