Big Wheel Blading’s COVID-19 Coverage

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected every skater in the world in The COVID-19 pandemic has affected every skater in the world in some way. In this new series, Inline Skating and Life During COVID-19, we will be checking in with various inline skaters from around the globe to see how the pandemic has affected their life. This is only one part of our COVID-19 coverage, which includes editorials, interviews with skaters who are deemed essential workers and an in depth report of what long term affects the pandemic will have on our sport and industry. Also check out the series, Essential Workers, Inline Skaters on the Front Lines of COVID-19, where we talk to inline skaters from around the world who are considered Essential Workers. If you’d like to contribute an editorial piece or have any comments or suggestions you can email janericwelch@bigwheelblading.com.


Felix Rijhnen is a 29-year-old inline speed skater and police officer from Darmstadt, Germany.  He has been skating for Powerslide since 2007 and is currently a member of the Powerslide-Matter World Team. In 2017 he achieved his life long goal and became World Champion at the 2017 World Roller Games in Nanjing, China in the 10,000m points race. In 2019 he became the first German male to win the prestigious Berlin Marathon in Germany.


How has the government in Germany responded to the COVID-19 pandemic?

We are not in a full lockdown but everything that is nonessential is closed, such as restaurants, bars and schools. Luckily for me our government is currently encouraging people to go outside to exercise. It is really helping me clear my head and allowing me to cope with this whole situation.

Are you still skating? If so what precautions are you taking to skate safe. 

We are currently still able to go skating outside alone or with one person we are living together with. My track, road and indoor facilities are all currently closed, so I can only go on bike paths and open roads.

I‘m paying extra attention about not crashing and don’t push myself to the absolute limit. Apart from that I always have a small bottle of hand sanitizer in my back pocket.

What skates are you skating on currently?

I‘m skating my Powerslide custom boots made by Sergio McCargo with 3x125mm XXX frame and Matter one20five wheels.

What would have to happen to make you stop skating?

I‘d always obey to the government regulations and hope everyone else does the same.

Are you doing any cross training? 

I‘m riding my bike and doing off-skate workouts. Luckily both of these work great from home. Another awesome tool for those days is a slideboard – the closest thing to real skating in my opinion.

What other activities are you doing to occupy your time?

I‘m only leaving the house to go training or shopping. Apart from that I‘m spending my time inside but at the moment there is enough work to do and I haven’t felt bored yet.

How has COVID-19 affected your normal everyday life? 

I guess we are all affected in different areas. I‘m really feeling with everyone who’s life is in danger and those who fight at the forefront against this virus!

What are your major concerns right now and looking into the future?

As a professional skater I‘m obviously in a tricky situation right now. There are no competition happening for me to represent my sponsors at and make a living. At the same time I‘m fully aware that this sport in general is a kind of a luxury and we have bigger fish to fry at the moment. Nevertheless skating plays a massive role in my life and its hurts to not be able to fulfill this part for a unforeseeable future/

How is the skate community in your town responding?

As far is I know everyone from the skating community is taking the current situation very serious and therefore strictly following the rules.

Do you have anything you’d like to add?

Stay safe everyone and keep your heads up high – better times will come for sure!

Core workout for Inline Skating / No more back pain!

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Jan Welch

Founder and creator of bigwheelblading.com

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