Tag Archives: roller derby

In Like a Lion

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March roared in like a lion for me this year. In addition to being back to my normal routine without any physical restrictions, I also participated in the first 2 interleague games for the Charm City All Stars this season, and my first 2 since August! That’s my first 2 interleague games in over 7 months and boy did I feel the rust!

First off, traveling with a group is NEVER easy. You have to make sure everybody is accounted for, that we have transportation, that we are all fed and that we all have a roof over our heads, and this is all AFTER the initial planning and organizing. The flight was semi stress free. We flew Virgin Airlines out of Dulles, outside of DC and about an hour away from Baltimore. Once we grabbed our bags we headed out to the rental car shuttle and waited and waited….and waited, I started to seat as some people were getting hungry and a little shifty eyed. We had to get out of there soon! After a few calls to the rental car facility and some more waiting, we made it to the rental cars and that was a true test of my mental stability.
rental shuttle

Then, all was right with the world. We got food, arrived at the hotel and counted sheep in preparation for our first bout together for 2013.

Our first interleague bout of 2013 was a further challenge for us since it was on the bank track. Talk about REALLY taking yourself out of your element! My motto, though, is to always challenge yourself and the more you put yourself out of your element, the more you can grow. If you’ve never experienced the Doll House, it’s definitely a site to behold; a city block where the LA Derby dolls practice and bout. It houses a flat track, a bank track, locker rooms, bout viewing footage area, makeup room, officials room. We were defeated by the Dolls who were clearly superior on the bank track.

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You can watch the game via the links below:

Part 1:  http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/29689190

Part 2:  http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/29691412

 

Sunday afternoon we drove out to the other side of LA to play Angel City in their warehouse. I know I personally felt more pumped and comfortable, ready to play. Once the bout started though, something felt unsettling on the track, perhaps it was how aggressive Angel City came out of the game, how much they wanted this win, or a lack of trust on Charm’s part with each other on the track. We fell in that game as well and loss always hold the taste of sour disappointment but if can also generate the need to shift into the next gear.

 

 

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17 Weeks!

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It’s been a long 17 weeks from breaking my collarbone during our home team Season Opener in September. 

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Initial Break – September 8, 2012

I’m not sure if I shot myself in the foot because I came in determined to NOT have surgery, since there would be NO chance of being healed for WFTDA Eastern Playoffs or WFTDA Champs, if we advanced.  I was also initially hopeful, lots of internet research showed 6-10 weeks for recovery time. The first week was hell.  I “slept” a lot and tried to limit any movement.  And by “slept” I mean entering in and out of consciousness throughout the day and night.  Any little movement was excruciating and I couldn’t lay on my back, on my side, on my stomach; I had to sleep sitting up with two large pillows to prop me up and a pillow under my left arm to prop my arm in place to take some pressure off of my arm hanging down.  Pretty sure I didn’t take a shower for two days, and mind you, that is with post bout derby stank.  Walking involved hunching as far forward as possible to take the pressure off the broken bone, pretty sure it didn’t help.  After the first week, the pain subsided greatly but inflammation was still apparent so only anti-inflammatories were needed for the following week.  Exercising was still painful and I wasn’t able to lift my shoulder so I remained pretty confined and limited in what I could do.  I returned to skating in mid to late October, non contact open skates and Tuesday speed practices away from any potential contact. 

Following WFTDA Championships, I had my 2nd Doctor’s appointment and was really excited for good news since it was past the 10 week mark for the normal healing time for this injury.  Once the x-ray popped up on the screen, my jam dropped and so did my high expectations and hope but according to the Doctor it was “progress.”  The x-ray, to the naked uninformed eye, looked exactly the same, no bone growth and same position.  There was, however, evidence of a callus forming. 

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Follow Up Appointment 12-12-12

Wait and come back in the new year. That was the consensus, with no projected date of return.  It was a true test of my patience.  I did leave with some permission to do “anything that didn’t hurt.” I could now work on full range of motion and light strength exercises, light weights, bike riding, planks.  It wasn’t until mid December that I actually started to feel some significant callus growth, possible bone growth???  So, I go into my next Doctor appoint hopeful for good news and a relatively soon return and nervous for bad news and a diagnosis of wait it out till who knows when. 

 

The Start of the New Season

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Today I coached my first All Star practice back after the off season and we held our interest meeting for skaters wanting to join the team.  Practice was great, it was a perfect blend of skills to knock off the cobwebs and brush up on some basics while breaking a sweat.  I decided to run today’s practice similar to our couple of practices after the WFTDA Championships, heavy on footwork, edges and blocking technique.  I also threw in some endurance and a bunch of plow and hockey stops.  I’m still not blocking, waiting on the clearance from my Dr., so I participated in the footwork, endurance and stops and helped give feedback on the blocking and edge work.  We had a huge turnout  since this Sunday practice was labeled “advance skills” and opened up to the league and the skaters really pushed themselves.  I see a huge drive this season from vets and All Stars alike to improve their individual game, something that hasn’t been so prevalent.  Most of our skaters aren’t comfortable just staying at the same level anymore and I love it when I see them pushing themselves to try new things and those light bulbs going off in their heads when something clicks.  I skirt a fine line in my coaching philosophy between making people just DO IT and getting them to think about the technical aspects of how they’re undertaking a skill, to improve efficiency.  All in all, many blisters were earned and everyone looked genuinely happy to be back and be pushed.

Following the practice we had a lengthy information meeting for the 2013 season, that included current All Stars and interested parties.  Both Pain, my co-captain, and myself were really taken aback by the sheer turnout of skaters who wanted to be a part of the team.  In the past we’ve had a lot of mixed emotions about working hard, playing competitive and being a part of the team.  In fact, not once did we actually PICK a roster for our All Star games, any of them!  That’s a funny and scary tid-bid.  But our skaters seem generally stoked on stepping up their game.  It’s going to be a great season, I can’t wait!

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