I joined the Texas RollerGirls Recreational Roller Derby League! I don’t know what the heck I was thinking. Actually, I know exactly what I was thinking. I was thinking that summer is approaching in Austin, and since I’ve been running, I enter summer a really strong runner (running 10 – 13 miles on my long runs) & by mid-June, I can barely run for 40 minutes without taking a walk break. So, summer is the time when I start thinking about cross training.
I am highly influenced by the power of suggestion, so when someone suggested that I sign up for Roller Derby, I did it. Aaack! After not being on roller skates since I was in high-school (maybe) I googled "how to roller skate", and came up with some good sites. After watching a bunch of videos, I put on my pads, laced up my skates & promptly fell on my left wrist & tail bone. Awesome!
First day of practice I was petrified, but my coach, Sparkle Plenty is a doll. We learned to fall – that’s all we did in our first session & you know what? It wasn’t that bad. In fact it wasn’t bad at all!
As we were falling and getting up from our falls this morning, I was thinking about a few exercises that I could be doing that would strengthen the muscles that I was using to get up off the floor.
Firstly, I want to mention that it is completely common that each of us finds strength, agility and flexibility differences on each side of our bodies. For that reason, start being aware of which leg or arm you use when doing various tasks (first step up the stairs, which leg crosses the other, getting up off the floor, which arm you typically push off from a low chair, etc.), then switch sides; It’ll be uncomfortable, but it builds independence in your movements & each side of your body.
Here are a list of exercises & the skills in Roller Derby that they’re going to help you with:
D Stroke (Skating):
Snow Plow (Stopping):
If you’re finding that your lower back needs some strength, because we’re constantly in a bent over position:
Fantastic Quad & Knee strengthener:
Finally, to help you get up after you’ve fallen:
From all fours:
Figure 4 Fall:
- Turkish Getup (I suggest doing this without weight to start & add weight as it gets easier & don’t forget to do both sides!)
- another video instruction that I liked a lot-
Also, none of these exercises need equipment, so you can do it at home. Enjoy!
PS: Since I don’t want anyone to steal my very cool roller derby name, I’ll tell you what it is after I’ve registered it.