FIRS President Sabatino Aracu and IOC Execuitve Board member C K Wu opened the new Roller Museum in Nanjing ©FIRS

A new museum celebrating roller sports has opened in Nanjing on the eve of the World Speed Skating Championships.

The Roller Museum was officially opened by Sabatino Aracu, President of the International Roller Sports Federation (FIRS), at a ceremony attended by C K Wu, a member of the International Olympic Committee's (IOC) ruling Executive Board. 

"he relationship with Nanjing started more than two years ago during the [Summer] Youth Olympic Games and being here today is a clear and tangible sign of the legacy of the IOC and its President Thomas Bach," said Aracu.

Inline speed skating was among four demonstration sports at Nanjing 2014 and the Roller Museum celebrates this.

A bid for it to be included on the Olympic programme at Tokyo 2020 failed but FIRS will have a role in organising skateboarding at the Games after it was one of five new sports accepted. 

The roller disciplines in the Museum have  been split into three areas in the Museum: indoor, urban and mountain. 

Videos and pictures introduce visitors to roller sports and there is memorabilia dating back more than 90 years charting the history of roller sports.

There is also an interactive section, including a mini-ramp. 

The new Roller Museum in Nanjing includes memorabilia dating back 90 years and an interactive section ©FIRS
The new Roller Museum in Nanjing includes memorabilia dating back 90 years and an interactive section ©FIRS

"I am very proud of this Museum and I would like to thank the City of Nanjing for the hard word they put into this project realised in a very short period of time," said Aracu. 

As well as the World Speed Skating Championships, Nanjing is also due to host the first-ever edition of the Roller Games next year.

A total of 43 countries are due to compete in the World Speed Skating Championships.

"People with different cultures and skin colors from all over the world will meet in Nanjing, the 'World Capital of Roller Sports'," said Aracu.

"This is a pure pleasure of people sharing the joy of roller skating; 

"This is a dialogue across time and space that connects Nanjing with the world and makes roller skating a sports symbol popular in all the five continents."