Derby United is proud to offer recreational instruction on our 9k sq ft outdoor lighted smooth concrete skating surface. We have assembled a team of instructors from a diverse range of skate experiences to bring San Diego roller skaters a wide range of training from dance, rink and figure backgrounds.
Derrick was born in Atlanta, GA. Now 27 years old, living in Southern California (San Diego) as an Active Duty Service member (U.S NAVY), he has been skating for 6 years. Derrick is continuously developing his skills while teaching those around him what he knows.
Primarily teaching Jam and Rhythm skating, he focuses on fundamentals that will apply at all levels of skating. Derrick looks forward to working with all levels of skaters and getting to know everyone. His number #1 goal is to help you build confidence while doing what you love!
Photo: Kevin Neff (@kneff_photography)
Emily Rupar has been skating for 11 years, starting in 2009 playing roller derby for the Charlotte Roller Girls in North Carolina. She has moved to London and New York City where she honed her outdoor skating skills, skating with the Friday Night Skate group in London through the cobblestone streets and then in Central Park, mostly avoiding tourists on bicycles.
After moving to San Diego, she got more invested in the rink where she evolved her skills including dancing and spinning. Her goal was to learn how to groove to the music not just with her arms and upper body, but with her feet and legs. Emily will be teaching intermediate skating skills for adults – if you are comfortable moving forward on your skates but you want to learn: how to skate backwards with confidence and speed, master turning and spinning, balance and weight shifting to improve your dance skills then this is the class for you. She will teach you the basics of spinning and jumping and some fun “line” dances that you can do at the rink with a group.
Donna has been an avid skater for most of her life. She began skating for a youth speed skating team in San Antonio, Texas. In high school and college, Donna took to the ice to learn the art of figure skating. As a travel enthusiast, Donna has skated around the world in countries such as Italy, Romania and Mexico.
Today, Donna plays roller derby for SDRD and enjoys dance and street skating with her friends. She has performed with the skate team ‘Flashpoint’ at the Mother Goose Parade and enjoys teaching others about this unique and fun sport at Skate Quad SD events. Donna holds a Master’s in Education and is excited to be teaching on the track at Derby United.
Carolee Kness discovered roller skating at her 12th birthday party at her hometown Roller Rink in Imperial Beach called Rocker Roller Rink. She loved races and all types of roller skating such as pairs, fours, freestyle and dance. She skated competitively for 3-4 years and was a two time Regional then National Champion with RSROA. Later in life, as an adult and new parent she returned to roller skating with her daughter to the roller rink once located in National City. She skated several years with her daughter and her son who started skating roller hockey. Skating has been a big part of her family’s life for several years.
Before Covid-19, Carolee was an active “Gold” level competitive figure skater in Ice Skating and a professional Ice Skating Coach. She has won several gold medals locally and internationally (In Oberstdorf Germany and Canada) in ice competitions in freestyle and artistic events. Due to Covid-19 all future events were cancelled so she ventured out and found happiness in skating outdoors on quads and inlines with new acquaintances. Skating during this pandemic has brought so much joy to her life because the skaters in the San Diego Community are all so welcoming and happy. Skating outdoors with friends is therapeutic and so much fun, it is joyful and a great escape from our everyday pressures. Carolee looks forward to helping skaters build confidence and learn new roller skating skills.
Melissa spent many of her early years at her local Bay Area roller and ice skating rinks, completely hooked on the feeling of freedom that only skating could provide. Back then, speed and fun were the only goals. Years later, she’s reconnected to skating as an adult, turning her focus to many different styles of roller skating; Rhythm, Artistic, Street – each demanding different skill sets and dedicated practice.
As a college-level design instructor for 14 years, Melissa combines her passion for teaching and rollerskating by helping others in their pursuit of joy on 8 wheels. Nothing compares to the feeling of unlocking new skills and flowing with others!
Paul Junior (PJ)
Paul Junior, known as PJ to his skate family, has been roller skating since the early 70’s. His parents were rexing competitors when they met at Monty’s Skateland in downtown San Diego. He was a recreational skater up until six years ago when he joined the Old School Skaters and started learning to dance skate. Since then he has affiliated with different performing and freestyle skate groups.
Having been a member of numerous San Diego and LA based skate clubs and skate performing groups, PJ performed at many venues throughout southern California including Pacific Beach Fest, San Diego County Fair, The Gong Show, and America’s Got Talent. He is a member of Old School Skaters, Wood Rydrz Skate Club, FlashPoint and Skate Quad SD.
Synchronized group skating is his passion and outside of these different organized groups, he can be seen at venues like Mission Beach, Liberty Station, Mission Bay, Viejas Casino, Skateworld San Diego, Epic Rollertainment, Fountain Valley Skate Center, and other out-of-state rinks, teaching and learning steps, old and new, from skaters who share the same passion. Let’s learn together.
Vivien started roller skating as a child at home and then rinks in the San Bernardino/Colton area. Her artistic skating career and passion for skating began over 25 years ago in Tucson AZ where her formal lessons started. She is a Regional champion and National competitor currently skating at the Gold level in dance and Silver level in figures. For cross training she enjoys ballroom dancing (smooth is her favorite) and ice skating.