This week, level 1 trainings started. Now, we are able to make contact and learn to block!
“This is where the fun begins”, one of the trainers said. And damn, was she right! After the training on monday I think I for the first time really experienced the feeling of being “high on derby”. I was exhausted, I had developed a blister on my right foot, I was sweaty and disgusting, but as I was skating I just forgot all those things. The challenge of a new task, compared with the satisfaction of beginning to master it and the physical aspect of it is amazing. Absolutely everything we tried was fun. I remember thinking between different exercises “ow, my foot hurts” or “omg, I’m tired”, but then we started something new, and it was so fun that I just forgot all the pain and discomfort. What a great feeling! (though not so great the following day.. yay, muscle-soreness!) I can’t help thinking that if this is how I feel after a couple of level 1 practices, then I have so much more fun in store for me!
During the week we have tried our hands at positional blocking, leaning, skating transitions, different pack exercises, how to make walls, and we even got to try to do the 25 in 5! The 25 in 5 was a big surprise. Although we aren’t able to have a fully sized derby track in our fresh-meat practice venue, A LOT of us managed to skate over 30 rounds in 5 min, which I think should be about 25 rounds in the properly sized track. And on our first try! I think I managed about 34 myself. The 25 in 5 requirement definately seems more doable now, not as intimidating.
It feels great to start doing “proper” derby exercises, to start learning skills that are specific for derby, and not just skating in general. It is also great fun to start working closer together with the other fresh meats. There’s not much room for cooperation when learning your basic skating skills. Initially, you need help and direction from trainers, but after a while it just comes down to individual practice. But now, a lot more is about cooperation and team work. Blocking is hard to learn on your own. To skate with others in a pack, you need to cooperate.
I yearn for practice now. And I think about derby all the time. I’m certainly hooked, and look optimistically towards a future full of Roller Derby!
Talking about the future, our league also has an exiting future ahead. Yesterday, the WFTDA finally announced that Nidaros Roller Derby has been accepted as an apprentice league, as the first league in Norway! This is fantastic news, and I’m so proud and happy that I get to be a part of this league!