Monday, January 10, 2011

My Body Hurts

When my friend Gina asked me, "Hey, do you want to join a roller derby league with me?", I thought Sure! Why not! I used to skate circles in my basement when I was little, I went disco skating once in college, how hard can it be? Sign me up!

The Red Rockettes are more of a training league, open to skaters of all levels, and it looked like a lot of fun. I bought some skates, got some spandex, borrowed kneepads from Gina, and off we went. We walked into the derby warehouse and my first thought was These girls are going to eat me alive. Most of them were wearing booty shorts with fishnets or crazy striped leg warmers; some had bad-ass tattoos and baby bangs. And they all looked like they could snap my femur with their bare hands.

But there was no way I was going to chicken out in front of Gina. She's a master blader (giggle giggle) and I wanted her to think I was just as tough as she is. There were a few girls already skating laps and it just looked so easy, I thought, Ok, I can do this.

Oh how sorely mistaken I was. I knew as soon as I got on the track, I was in trouble. We started with five minutes of warm-up laps, and my shins were burning halfway through lap one. That might be because I was more shuffle-rolling as opposed to smoothly skating.

I stayed to the outside of the track as veteran skaters zoomed past me and I swear I felt like a car pulled over on the side of the freeway, rocking every time a car speeds past. Every gust of wind threatened to throw me off balance. Not to mention the hazardous strips of tape and bumps in the concrete - I looked like a top spinning out of control, flailing and flapping my arms, desperately trying to just stay on my feet.

After those first five minutes, I was panting, sweating, red-faced, and my legs were burning. Let me re-emphasize that we'd only been skating for FIVE MINUTES. We did some stretches, introduced ourselves, then we were split into two groups: veterans and rookies.

Us rookies worked on skating drills like weaving in and out of cones, perfecting the "derby stance" (boobs over knees over toes), wall squats, lunges, and of course, stopping. Otherwise known as that-which-put-me-on-my-ass-nearly-every-time. The veterans raced around the track, stopping on a dime, knocking eachother over, and I was totally jealous.

They taught us three different ways to stop, and guess how many of them I mastered? None. Not one. I cannot stop once I get going. This could be a problem.

So now I'm committed to twelve weeks of trying to stop myself before I hit the bleachers or the wall or the floor. Every week we'll learn new skating and derby skills and then we have to pass a test after six weeks. This week, we're learning how to fall. I told them I think I already have that part down.

I have exactly one picture of me looking semi-confident and bad ass.

The rest of the pictures are me shuffling along, trying not to flail my arms wildly.

Stay tuned.

5 comments:

LecNessMonster said...

I love how they pad the columns, but not the CONCRETE FLOOR.

li'l mil said...

Maybe next week you can show up in your Teletubby costume. That's gotta have TONS of padding in it.

You look awesome!!

andi said...

HELMETS! Sweet! This makes me think of the King of the Hill episode where Peggy and Leanne are on a roller derby team... you should google it if you haven't seen it!

And wasn't there a Charmin commercial from our childhood where a kid is skating and stuffs TP in her pants? We should google that, too, while we're at it.

Erin said...

tell me when I can come watch! or I'LL break your femur.

Also, you need to watch Whip It.

IndyGo Wylde said...

You did just fine! I wish I could have skated. I'll be there next week. As for crashing into the bleachers, I did it twice last week. I survived. That's not why I was out injured this week. Keep the faith, Wanton will help us all!