One thing I’ve noticed about roller derby is that it is a sport that puts a lot of demands on the core and lower body.
I’ve always had strong legs. When doing the seated leg press – I can press my body weight. (258.5lbs! WOOT!) But that requires a different sort of muscle than roller derby. It requires short bursts of strength rather than sustained endurance.
The two things that I’m struggling with in passing my skills test (aside from the cursed 25 in 5) are agility and derby stance.
Agility requires me to hop and jump and generally be light on your feet. It requires explosive bursts of energy and strength.
The funny thing about hops and jumps – is that in scrimmage and drills – I will jump over anything that gets in my way without much difficulty. I don’t think about it – I just do it. But put me in a “hopping drill” or “skills testing” situation – and I freeze and all of a sudden I can’t. That will change 🙂 I’m getting there.
Derby stance is a different sort of hell. It requires sustained squatting while skating, doing crossovers, hitting, whipping, and being aware of your surroundings. It requires sustained endurance in a squat position.
My coaches have given me a set of drills to do at practice to help develop those lovely strong, toned legs. They will help me to develop proper derby stance as well as be able to skate faster.
I’m excited – except I’m practicing only 1-2 times a week. I’m hoping to bump that up to 2-3 times a week by going to Raw Meat Vancouver 2 or 3 times a month – but that’s still not enough to get my legs in optimal shape for self propelling and effective crossovers as well as that lovely proper derby stance:
In case you didn’t notice from the picture above – there’s a fairly deep knee bend required.
In addition to practice time, I’m going to have to develop those muscles through cross training. (did you feel my shudder? *snicker*)
So I need a plan. I always have a plan, but I need a plan I can actually put into action, given my life right now.
I bought a balance board.
Evil little device. Funny as hell to watch people try to stand on it.
Apparently I have fairly good balance. I can stand on it, keep it level, do squats (very slow ones) and hold a squat for a minute & 30 seconds.
My goal is to work up to 5 minutes.
In the meantime, I need to get back to bodyrocking. There’s some phenomenal exercises that they do that will be extremely beneficial to the explosive movements. I also need to do something that will encourage core & leg endurance. I’m thinking yoga – both regular and the Jillian Michaels version. I can alternate.
And then there’s going to be the hikes. I’m in love with hiking lately. We did the walk from the Squamish Chief parking lot over to Shannon Falls last weekend, it was a couple hours of walking/hiking up stairs. It was awesome. I want to do the Chief again soon, and the 4 Lakes Trails.
And finally – riding bikes with my boys. I am looking forward to going on bike rides with the boys. We have an 8km trail right out our back yard. The first 4 or 5 kms are fairly hard, a slow, steady incline, but the last bit is amazingly fun downhill.
I have a general plan. Now if I can only get off my couch 😉
And just because its fun: She’s Got Legs