I wandered in to our local roller derby rink to see a friend’s daughter compete, and found myself at the Baby Doll Brawl cheering til I was hoarse. More actual sport than brawl, it’s not your mother’s roller derby. Racing at high speeds around a banked track, the girls must work together to score by passing or blocking the other team. I am fascinated by the girls’ focus on self-acceptance and empowerment, by the sense of teamwork. Seeing them high-five the opposing team at the end of the match, I am encouraged for our future. These portraits have been made over the last two years at the end of a series of tough brawls, when the girls have given their all. They stand in front of me confident and self-possessed, even as the bruises from the day begin to bloom.