Skating with WAR

The Basics

  • Skate events are free -- just show up with your skates.
  • Skates meet near the White House, unless otherwise specified -- between The White House North Lawn and Lafayette Square, (see map below).
  • Since skate routes are chosen by skate leaders, no two skates are exactly the same.
  • If it's raining, we don't skate. If it's really cold we might not skate. See Weather Policy.
  • We skate at our own risk. Be careful and wear safety gear.

SAFETY comes first. Know your limits. Wear proper gear (helmets are mandatory, wristguards, elbow and knee pads, skates that fit).

Skate at your own risk!

No matter what happens, you are personally responsible for everything that you do during a skate. Accidents do happen, and the club highly recommends that you only skate with us if you have your own health insurance. The club is a low-key group of people who skate together and cannot assume liability of any type.

What Level Are the Skates?

All levels! From novice to advanced. If you are unsure whether your skills are sufficient, please speak to a skate leader OR one of the Skate Patrol marshals (in red shirts)

Skates will have a leader who will endeavor not to leave anyone behind. If you feel that you cannot complete a skate, let the leader or sweep know, and ask if you need directions to a metro or bus station.

Skill Levels


If you have new skates in an unopened box, you will need a bit of practice before coming on a city skate. We encourage skaters who would like to work on these skills to attend our free clinic in Rock Creek Park.


- Can steer and push on flat ground

- Can usually handle slight inclines and declines

- Experience Skating in a rink, parking lot, or paved pathway

- Should wear all protective gear: wrist, elbow, knee pads and helmet

Entry-Level Street Skating:

Weekly Event: Saturday Hains Point Meetup

Street Skating requires more skill than trail or parking lot skating. While balance and steering techniques are essentially the same, skating in city streets and in potentially dangerous environments requires a higher competency. Like driving, you must constantly search for hazards and obstacles and be prepared to react by turning, avoiding, and stopping.

Required Skills:

- Can stop quickly on even ground

- Can navigate around pot holes, and over speed bumps

- Can slow or stop on gentle declines

- Skate continuously, without stopping to rest for one mile

Intermediate Street Skating:

Weekly Event: Sunday Intermediate Skate

Group skates take place on the streets and trails in and around DC, which can be quite hilly.

Required Skills: (in addition to the ones noted above)

- feel comfortable skating with a large group in traffic during the day and night.

- are able to stop and turn on any surface or terrain - including moderate hills.

- are willing to follow traffic laws

- understand hand signals such as such as skating quickly through an intersection where traffic is being held.

- skate in a confined space without spilling beer

- Skate continuously, without stopping to rest for two miles

Advanced Skating:

Weekly Event: Sunday Advanced Skate & Wed Night Skate

Even hot-shot speed skaters should take note that urban skating in DC requires certain technical skills:

Required Skills: (in addition to the ones noted above)

- can balance, steer, and brake on large downhills

- stop quickly, even from a high velocity

- can hop on or off of a curb while skating

- climb a staircase while on skates

- skate continuously, without stopping to rest for four miles

Bring water or sports drink, energy bars/food, safety equipment, personal identification and emergency money.

Street skates are free... does not include: equipment, travel, insurance, beer, parking tickets, or skin grafting.

Where we meet: