Carly Simmons

Moxie: The Boutfit With Grit


Moxie is the first roller derby garment to integrate shoulder protection and makes you game-day ready.


Challenge: Roller Derby is a full-contact sport, that results in many upper body injuries. However, regulations prevent players from wearing additional hard padding to cover areas other than knees and elbows.

Solution: Moxie incorporates both shoulder bracing and shoulder padding to create a unique silhouette for its players while complying to standard roller derby regulation and ultimately, reducing upper body injurie.

Case: Preventing Upper-Body
Injuries for Roller Derbiers

Services: Design Research, Product Design, Branding & Guidelines

Methods: User Interviews, Site Visits, Market Research, Prototyping

Team: Rhea Bhandari, Sophie Carrillo, Hannah Rudin, Carly Simmons

We all have bad shoulders for some reason - I don’t really know why. I think it’s because we keep hitting each other
— Derbier, New York, NY


How Does
Moxie Work?

Two breast zippers that reinforce compression fabric, creating shoulder braces within the garment


Moxie’s shoulder braces work simply. Two breast zippers are located at the top of the garment. Zippers should remain open when a derby player pulls over their jersey. Once the jersey is on, the derbier zips each side of the garment which pulls the compression material tight to create a braced atmosphere for the shoulder. Shoulder injuries are the most common injury in the sport because players are constantly making contact with one another to keep balance and make their way through “packs” of players. Currently, the sport does not allow “hard” pads outside knee and elbow protection, so Moxie incorporates soft padding to the shoulders for greater protection against high impact.

This prototype of Moxie is made with consideration for the Gotham Girls All Stars team in New York City, of which we were fortunate enough to speak with some of the players in the league, including the captain. The diamond padding and color palette draws from lightning strike motifs in the current Gotham Girls logo. For other teams interested in the product, we intend to cater to each team’s style. Roller derby’s history of unique dress is as old as the sport, and so it’s important that each team be represented as they wish, with jerseys made specifically for them.

User Interviews
& Scope:

There’s space for everyone [in derby], but the vibe depends on the league. We have a reputation and our uniforms reflect that.
— Derbier + Captain, New York, NY

During our project process, we were fortunate to speak to four derbiers across the sports’ landscape, locally and internationally. They all had surprising things to share with us—how derby has impacted their lives —and it was our duty to follow the research trail that would lead to the most impact. We narrowed our focus to look at derby injuries, more specifically shoulder injuries.


Branding &

Derbiers are always shifting their force to the right


The shape and motion of Moxie’s mark is represent the derby player themself. Derby is played by circling a track counter-clockwise, so, whenever a derby player is facing you, they are always shifting their force to the right. The series of three ascending lines points upward - a sentiment of the sport itself, where players are always working to improve and encourage their teammates. Colors are bold and energetic, just like the players. Moxie even has their own handwritten font.

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& Patterns:


The entire Moxie garment was made from a custom template. Using a basic cotton tee-shirt as a sort of template, the Moxie template was born from edits made to an existing template. The collar was fit to match the body template and a number was attached for testing purposes. Moxie had an entirely different life before her final form, where there was a cross band, similar to existing shoulder braces. In this case, the cross band was not going to work because it was too easy to tug at, which would be hazardous during competitions.