What can I say about my experience at the Left Turn Coaching Clinic hosted by our friends at EPRD? Well, first I’ll start with how excited I was to be learning from a couple of well-known players for this sport, Scald Eagle and Mercy! (Aahhhh, the crowd goes wild!) Especially after one of the coaches for the clinics had a video clip go “viral” within the derby community just earlier that week. I even made a point to show friends and co-workers the video and say “look this is what we do! And I get to learn from her this weekend!” Like our coach often says it’s like getting to play basketball with Michael Jordan. What amateur basketball player can say they have done that?
The clinic in itself was non-stop. Once we had gone over one skill we moved right onto another. Most of the things we learned could be applied to both the jammer and blocker positions. Because sometimes to be a good player you might need to know how to play the game from every position. The drills started out in a way that even someone who might have just started skating could still benefit and learn from. As the hour progressed more advanced variations for each skill were introduced. Sure you can weave in an out of a line of skaters! Now do a full rotation around each skater and oh do it skating backwards (your face should be in their face). There was also discussion on how these skills are applied in game play, and how the recent rule changes can affect the ways in which you might have perviously blocked or even jammed. So basically applying these skills in an affective and legal way while protecting yourself at the same time.
Not only were there skaters from our league there, but also from other leagues around New Mexico, Texas, and even Mexico; all ready to learn, and add more skills to their skating tool box. Over all we had eight CCD skaters attend the three-day clinic.
Both coaches were fairly tall standing over 6 feet with skates on! Myself I’m 5 foot 7 before I put on skates, and I’m not one of the tallest girls in the league. In an area where most are 5 foot 5 and below the perspective of a taller skater was very much needed and appreciated!
This clinic was a great way to start my second season of roller derby. Highly motivating and informative. When it was all over we could not wait to go back to the league, share with them all the knowledge we had gained, and kick off Crossroads City Derby’s 3rd full season!
-Captain Howdy, #.333