Old, ground-down toe-stops vs. giant new shiny Gumball V2’s 🙂

So yeah my skates are still FUBAR, although I have a trip to London planned for next week, so I’ll be getting to try on some alternatives soon. Also I’m currently waiting to see whether I can wrangle some replacement GT50s, since it’s not great that they’re fucked after only a few months.

However, nothing stands between Red Menace and roller skating, so I still attempted to use them at the roller disco on Friday. A pair of tactical laces helped tether the plate back onto the boot, but it was a pretty rocky set up.

On the plus side, I loosened up the ol’ trucks on my right skate and got some good practice doing one-foot weaving forwards as well as back. Also some transitions and backwards reverse crossovers, because frankly they always need work.

Lauren and I did some wheel swapping so she could try the Atom 88as. It was strange how much slippier my old 89/92a fugitive set-up seems. If they weren’t so wide, I’d be tempted to go back to them, as it’s tough to plow on the disco floor because it’s a bit grippy.

At practice yesterday then, Nuker lent me the league’s jam straps and this did a marvellous job at keeping my heel from lifting off the plate. I even forgot my boot was messed up at all!

KP, who was running the session, promised us some jumpy Scald Eagle drills, but we also got to work on a lot of different scrim and non-contact skills.

Weak areas:

  • Laterals suck constantly. It’s less that I’m overbalancing now, and more that I need to get moving faster to respond to what’s happening in the wall.
  • Rules! We were doing some basic jam reffing and pack reffing, but we kept having to stop and discuss rules around lead jammer status. I really must revise the rulebook…

Areas that sucked slightly less:

  • Approaching the wall fast, jumping through a gap between blockers. This looked pretty scary, but actually it was okay. I thought jumping a gap would a fair bit more intimidating, but when you’re whizzing toward a wall, you barely have time to chicken out of it!
  • Jumping about on toe-stops. I wasn’t so bad at this, mostly because I have my shiny new gumballs. I got accustomed to my teeny kit toestops, so now having bigger ones is like “Oooooohh, so stable”

Advice I received:

  • Vera: I let myself roll back too much in a wall – she suggested to ‘dig in’ more on my inside edges, which I always forget to do.
  • KP: Keep my back straighter and bend down more when I do backwards plow stops (or I guess powerslides). I think this will help me slow and stop quicker – currently I’m very gentle with it.
  • Bones: “Smush the dog poo” as a hilariously graphic description of how to execute a hockey stop

Things to work on:

  • WFTDA rules
  • Weaving cones
  • Left side hockey stops
  • Laterals (always)