We were chuffed to have the pioneering New South Wales skater Anastasija Kukić (aka @the_moljitov_princess) as the first guest on our Drop In Podcast.
We chatted with her about teaching herself to skate, getting sponsored, how the scene has changed, and how the community can better support trans skaters.
Here are some of her insights:
Spotlight trans skaters
Last year, I asked a lot of brands, ‘What are you doing for Trans Week of Visibility and Trans Day of Remembrance?' None of them had an answer. So I created a list of trans skaters on all types of wheels, and it ended up being used by a few different brands. It was a bit sad, and also time consuming, to have to try and push that. It is getting better, slowly, but I do find that trans skaters tend to be at the periphery until a token is needed.
Question the algorithm
In the past year I've had to stop using trans hashtags because I don't get the same reach for my content if I do. Instagram actively makes sure I'm not visible. The community is so Instagram and Tik Tok-based now, and that skews our perception of who a roller skater is. [If I search for roller skaters on these platforms] I’m going to find some tiny, white, cis-gender, very normative-looking girl. It’s a problem not just of representation but also trying to find trans people within the community. I don't think this can be changed until we're beyond those platforms. How it's done, I don't know, because it has to be organic. It can’t be forced.
Avoid gendered skate competitions in favour of community events
I love skate events, but I never want to see roller skating go the way of Street League skateboarding competitions or the X Games. I’d rather be at an event that is more catered to fostering community.
Tov’s one of our favourite skaters, who inspires us to push ourselves further. See more of her skating on her Instagram, and listen to Drop In Podcast for more of our chat with Tov.