Mototake Makishima takes Document into the rink at Fix8, with the roller skating community putting the culture first

The London roller skating scene is all about freedom, expression, and bringing people together. Fix8, a roller skating rink in the Wembley neighborhood, has allowed for all levels of skaters to socialize, groove to the music, exercise, and enjoy themselves since 2012. “In our community, the culture and skaters needs come first,” according to a statement by the co-founders of Fix8 on their website. London’s innovative roller skating scene expands as more people realize the versatility of this sport and begin to understand the basis on which skaters built this community upon: friendly competition and joy. Director, screenwriter, and photographer, Mototake Makishima, offers this video as a testament to the creativity and individuality of 16 of London’s roller skaters.

Kai (co-founder of Fix8)
When setting up Fix8, there was only one other place to skate and that was on the other side of London. It is a bit too far for locals to go all the way to south London. So this place really served a purpose. It’s just a labor of love. A bunch of skaters needed a place to skate. And that was kind of our ethos when we started: For the skaters, by the skaters. And the community has grown.

What does the skating community mean to you?
Family. I’ve been skating for nine years this year, and I have met some people that I am gonna be friends with the rest of my life. The people aren’t just friends, they are family. Even outside the roller rink, I can call them when I am going through troubles, when we need hands, and vice versa. I have met a family here.

Please describe the scene in your eyes and what it means to you, your favorite aspects of it.
For me, when I’m roller skating it has such a deeper meaning than just rolling around on my wheels. I feel free, and I feel the happiest when I have my skates on. It’s a sense of freedom, and confidence in a field that is mine, all mine. My favorite aspects of it would be when I’m doing lifts and exciting tricks; being an individual skater is key.

What is your favorite tune to skate to?
My favorite song to skate to as a roller skater, would “Feel the Love” by Rudimental because it’s slow and the speed really picks up through the song. It makes me feel like there is nobody else around, and it’s just me and the song itself speeding around.

What is the future of roller skate culture?
Youthful—More and more of the youth of today are finding interest within skating which is an amazing thing to see.
Stress-free—The more I skate the less depressed or stressed I feel. I am in my element and so is everyone else.
Heart filling—It makes me feel happy, and I know it is heart-filling/warming for others as I see it on their faces when I roll by.

How do you feel when you roller skate?
When I am skating, that is when I feel like I am showing off the best version of me. It feels amazing it is like you are letting something be so in touch with you.

What does the skating community mean to you?
Fix8 brings me a real big chance to come into a space like this where it’s massive and the people are amazing. It is like having a family, all on wheels. It gives you a chance to meet new people, have new opportunities, and come together as a team and a family, a skating family.

Shanika wears bodysuit and earrings model’s own.

What is your favorite tune to skate to?
I don’t have a favorite skate tune, but I love to skate to slow songs because I jam to it in slow motion, and that’s what I’m best at.

What is the future of roller skate culture?

It will bring people together as a family to have fun so we can continue to teach generation after generation to show love, togetherness, happiness, to bring individual personalities out because that’s what roller skating is about.

How do you feel when you roller skate?
For me roller skating is a freedom, freedom of movement. It’s the closest thing you can get to flying without jumping out of a plane. When I’ve got the skates on, it’s like you just glide through the air, effortless. And it’s like whatever thinking in your mind is whatever you could portray [with] your feet. When the basses hitting and you’ve got the wheels on, you rolling, you are just thinking about the next move, the next step. You are not thinking about what’s in store tomorrow or what time you ought to get off to work.

What does the skating community mean to you?
Without roller skating community there is no me in essence. My dad (also a skater) started because of the roller skating community he had at that time. It is the same community he is skating [with] now that bred the communities of today. So the roller skating community got bigger and stronger and we continue to grow, continue to build together. And from the community I’ve gained even closer friends. The next chapter, which is the skaters I like to roll with, do stuff like travel together, we do videos together, we do skate together. It is not a community, it’s a family.

Without each other you don’t push yourself to do better moves. I am as good as I am. Because of my brothers next to me, because of my skating family, because of the next chapter, these are the people and these are the things around me that have allowed me to push myself. Because we are going up against each other in a friendly way.

Hana wears dress by Ashley Williams.

How do you feel when you roller skate?
It’s exhilarating. When you take the roller skates off you feel so stuck on the floor. You feel like you are going back to be a human being. When you are roller skating you just feel cooler and faster. Even if you are not a dancer you feel like a dancer when you put them on.