It’s been a long day and the post I hoped to get out earlier is–well, here. Late. Crazy late. And I’m typing like made ’cause I’m on a time table. So bear with me…
I talk a lot about derby practice. I even show you video of what I do. But what does practice really look like? I mean, how does it come out in the long run? What exactly do we do when we’re in skates and geared up?
Glad you asked.
Last Wednesday I manged to get some great GoPro footage of our practice. Not just a few things here and there, but damn near the whole thing. And I thought that rather than give long explanations of what’s going on, I figured, “Why not show what I go through?”
So this is what you’re getting. Basically, this is all the practice–save for the cardio warm up, which was 40 laps and about 12 minutes of fast skating–that I experience, as seen through my eyes. You’re also going to hear what I hear and pick up on some of the instruction that’s given to help me improve. You also get to hear some of the shit we talk back and forth between us, which can be somewhat amusing.
Part of this you’re already seen. This is a long drill where we weaved up through a pack, then weaved back, then shot up the outside to return to the front. Like I said, it’s long, but then so are all these videos. This, like a lot of the things we do, is a timing drill:
You’ve also seen a little of this: the blocker/jammer pace line where one person blocks the way through the pack so the jammer (your partner) can get through. This is where I fell and someone tripped over me, but that was as shortened version of this drill. Here is the full one, and it’s–you guessed it–long:
Here we get into our blocker/jammer drills, going two-on-one and three-on-one against a jammer. This is where I’m told on several occasions about things I’m doing wrong and how to correct them. The guy giving the instruction is a ref, Ted Nuisance, and he’s really, really good at what he does. A lot of stuff happens fast–you’ll see:
This is an extension of the three-on-one drills, with us adding a pivot, who is on the same side as the jammer. The idea here is for the pivot to move blockers out of the way and help the jammer get through the pack. That’s why you’ll sometimes see a person with a stripped pantie on their helmet moving people aside.
This was something that Bi and I got into with Mary–she’s in the white helmet–explaining how bridging works and how to use it to run a jammer way back away from the pack. She wasn’t present the day we practiced bridging, so this was her chance to learn.
There you have it: quick, dirty, to the point. Don’t have to read much, just put on the video and watch me go crazy.
Or maybe you’ll feel like joining me…