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My new personal trainer

I’ve been blocking the shit out of this spa bag in the gym. It has a ridge around the bottom which is like the perfect analog of someone in derby stance. It’s my new little game inbetween sets. I feel like just practicing the sequence of movement for executing a hit is really helping.

On Tuesday and yesterday we covered various jamming styles, reforming a wall, hitting and recycling, and offence tactics. Yesterday we also did a positional scrim, meaning I was able to play for a little while too.

Weak areas

  • Falling over backwards while jamming – seem to have a tendency to slip over backwards while I’m trying to juke. I think it may be because I straighten up out of derby stance… and everything falls apart from there.
  • Hitting – I lose my balance after execution. In the interests of committing, I throw myself out, which is doubly pointless if my hit doesn’t even knock the target out of bounds.
  • Illegal blocking – I was called for a ‘blocking with the head’ which I didn’t even notice had happened. It’s happened before, so I really need to pay attention to it. Also my forearms were covered in bruises the next day. Naughty jammer.
  • Endurance – So my laps are okay, 27 is no problem… but keeping up speed after fighting through the pack?! Shit’s hard
  • Laterals – as usual, these suck megabadtime. I need to get lighter on my feet.

Areas which sucked slightly less

  • Timing and power of my hits – feel like I’m getting better with the technique
  • Side surfing – I’ve only ever been able to do this in a left-wise circle, but I was practicing going in a straight line a lot in the warm up time, then right at the end of yesterday’s session I managed to turn right, which was crazy exciting.
  • Jamming – not saying this was any good, but I broke out of the pack at least once
  • Using blocker friends – both as a jammer and as a blocker in a wall. Getting better at gratuitous contact. Just need to make sure I don’t get too grabby and land multiplayers
  • Scrim brain – scrimming is a horrid, disorientating torture. But I feel like my brain is slowly learning to keep a tab on what is happening. I still have no clue where/who the jammers are, but at least I’m getting better at working out where my team are.

Advice

  • Vera – ‘stamp’ into the small ‘hockey stops’ (‘heel kicks’?), rather than slide, to stop more abruptly

Areas to work on more

  • Pack awareness – particularly where the (other) jammers are
  • Get fitter – more HIIT?
  • More body awareness/proprioception to avoid penalties
  • Laterals – getting across the track to block
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