Written by Vincent Morretino

My name is Vincent Morretino. I’m a 30 year old father, husband and rollerblader; nothing more. 

I’ve been rollerblading for 14 years, and I’ve met some incredibly kind and generous people along the way. 

Balance rolling magazine started as a free online supplement to Be-Mag in June 2009, and ran for 5 issues as “Balance, presented by Be-Mag.” To me, this was such a source of pride. That the best publication in rollerblading would risk their reputation by giving an unknown rollerblader the chance to influence their fan-base speaks volumes about Be-Mag’s own faith in the individuals that make up our community.

After the 5th issue, I decided that I needed to try to bring paying advertisers into the equation so that my contributors would have the incentive to follow through with their commitments to Balance. It was mutually decided between myself, Michael and Stefan at Be-Mag that if I was to pursue this, I would have to distance myself from Be-Mag, from a business standpoint. They have always been great about promoting and supporting the magazine after I decided to take Balance along that fateful path for three more issues. Long story short, it didn’t pan out with getting advertisers. Maybe I’m not a very good salesman, maybe there just isn’t money in this industry. But, it doesn’t matter in the end.

Through working on Balance, I have discovered that it has really helped with my graphic design and editing career, as I wore many different hats while putting the issues together: art director, editor, marketer, webmaster (not a very good one, hahaha), talent scout, writer and photographer. The latter led me to realize that I love photography and editing photos. This new found passion helped me get a second job as an assistant wedding photographer for one of the most successful wedding photography companies in the state of Indiana.

The death of Balance can be blamed squarely on the fact that I just don’t have the time to go through the motions that each issue requires to be published anymore. I work two jobs and have a family. It’s crucial that I stay true to my priorities, and my family is my number one priority. Balance had a good run, and now I have a better portfolio because of it. It was a positive life changing experience that I will never forget, and the limited print issues look great in my bookshelf.

I’d like to thank Michael Bayr and Stefan Kalt, true pillars of our community. They rarely get the credit or acknowledgement that they deserve for their contributions to rollerblading. Michael and Stefan, thank you both very much for the opportunity you gave me so I could build a skill set that allowed me to express myself on a whole new level. I’m forever indebted to you both.

I would also like to thank my contributors, without whom I wouldn’t have been able to publish 400 pages of content, hundreds of photos and a handful of articles and stories. Their work has been shared with over 85,000 people world wide in 64 countries.

Many thanks go out to Trace Taylor, Al Dolega, Chris and Michelle Gerard, Corey Oringderff, Dave Dinuzzo, Blake Taylor, Rob Squire, Jon Fromm, Matt Lorch, Michael Braud, Charles Dunkle, Walt Austin, Tim Adams, Nate Hall, Nick Lindsey, Paco Ass Dre, Dave Andrew, Anton Vinokurov, Bartek Sadura, Piotrek Gackiewicz, Lui Summer, Jonas Poeltl, Zack Podell, Michael Kraft, Knucklehead and Daniel Lambert.

-Vincent Morretino

Now check out the Balance backissues of the past 2 years!