Byline: Kelebogile Masemola

26 July 2022

It was a day full of entertainment and joy for roller skaters and their families, at the 2022 South African Artistic and Inline Speed Skating Championships held at Mandela Sports Complex in Hammanskraal, Tshwane.

On Saturday, 16 July 2022, the skaters performed individually, in groups, and as duets, illustrating their best artistic moves.

A good few of the moves were hazardous to perform yet beautiful to observe.

Participant, Amogelang Molamodi from Hammanskraal said he started skating in 2019, and in 2020 skaters couldn’t compete because of covid.

“Skating saved my life, and it probably saved the lives of my teammates from engaging in bad activities.

Skating helps to keep us off the streets, because after school I focus on my school work or I practise.

I do not have time to be on the streets, it saves me from bad stuff,” said Molamodi.

The skating extravaganza was a joint event of the City of Tshwane and Roller Sport SA, a National Federation for Speed and Artistic Roller Skating.

The federation is actively involved in all clubs’ development and that of high-performance skaters.

It has staged numerous world-class international championships at the Hammanskraal rink, the home of roller skating in South Africa.

Omphemetse Ramoshaba, also from Hammanskraal said he was inspired by his brother who was a roller skater.

“I used to watch my brother skate and I wanted to be like him, but my mom did not allow because I was young.

As I grew older she agreed to allow me to do skating.

I want to be best in this type of sport, nationally and internationally, I want people to know me for my hard work.

Omphemetse’s proud mother, Mpho Ramoshaba said “seeing my son on that stage makes me proud.

This sport keeps him out of the streets.”

The event saw skaters from seven provinces participating.

The winners will participate in the 2022 African Roller Games and the World Championship. Organisers said the artistic rink and road circuit in Mandela Village was the only sport-specific skating facility in South Africa, and the Hammanskraal Roller Skating club dominates the senior sections in both speed and artistic skating.