Sunday, August 19, 2018

Second Recruitment Night!


So! You've decided to give derby a chance! Our second recruitment night is just around the corner! What do you need and what do you need to know before you walk into the rink?

First and foremost you need to know that this is NOT a tryout. This is boot camp designed to teach people of all skill levels.  We will teach you everything you need to know from skating forward and falling safely to assisting and hitting each other on the track!


The schedule for the recruitment night will go like this:

8:00 pm  -- Meet and Greet!  Come meet some of our current skaters and leadership within the league.  Ask questions, get to know one another.  There will be a small game that you can participate in (it's not mandatory) and there might be prizes at the end!  You will sign the waiver at this time.  All other "paperwork" will be done electronically this year!

8:30 pm -- Informational Meeting!  Learn about the league!  We will discuss the structure of the league, introduce you to Quad Squad, let you know about the types of teams, dues structure and training information.

9:00 pm -- Scrimmage time!  You will get to watch a thirty minute scrimmage!  There will be women's only and open division play.  There will be skaters around to answer questions.  The announcer will keep you informed and our refs will keep everything legal!

9:30 pm -- Open Skate!  If you have your own skates and gear, please bring it for open skate.  Rental skates will be available free of charge.  You do not have to skate, you can hang out and chat and get your questions answered.  There will be plenty of people around to help you out! 

I look forward to seeing everyone!  We are excited to have you!

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Safety Gear

by Mojo GoGo

For the FCRD Training Session

For the training sessions beginning in September, there will be limited quantities of used equipment available for new skaters. If you have not yet purchased your own equipment, plan to come early to practices to find equipment that properly fits you. It is recommended that you have at least your own mouth guard for all practices.
B & D Skating Rink will be offering a Fresh Meat Package. 


Kansas City is v. lucky to have a Derby 4 All store that you can walk into and buy equipment. 

Before You Buy, Remember…

This is the only body you have, so you want to protect it as best you can! Accidents happen and sometimes even the best protective equipment can’t save you from injury, but good quality equipment will keep you on the track and in better shape than cheap stuff.  You can also buy a $20 mouth guard from a sporting goods store, but a $0.99 version from Walmart will work just as well. The trick at this point is to balance cost and quality.

Look around and see what the vets are wearing. Ask them about their experiences with different brands of equipment and to try things on if possible. What one person thinks is the perfect knee pad may not work for another. And because that is the case there are lots of swap / trade / for sale used sites for derby equipment. Do some research and then buy smart.


First, take stock of your body and physical condition. Are you young and relatively healthy or do you have a few off road miles of fun in your past? Do you bruise easily or does it take a Mack truck to make a mark? Do you have more than a couple of broken bones in your past? If so, you probably want to spend a little more on protective gear to start out.

Also remember that safety gear is not intended to last forever. Much of it will stretch over time, especially knee and elbow pads, so buying a size that does not fit snugly now will likely not serve you for long.

The Essentials

jukesafetygear1
Photo Courtesy of KC Derby Digest

Helmet

First, the item that protects your most important asset: the helmet. You only have one head and science hasn’t figured out how to replace them yet so you need to keep yours in good shape. There are lots of different helmet styles out there, from cheap bicycle helmets to expensive hockey helmets. Don’t just assume that because it is sold as “safety equipment” it will meet your requirements for protective equipment. Skate helmets should meet the ASTM F1492 standard for multiple lower-impact “trick roller skating” use. Bike helmets are not typically sufficient as they are CPSC standard for single high-impact use. Some helmets, however, qualify for both standards. Take some time to ensure that your helmet meets the right standard.
As for fit, the helmet should come down over the front of your head and the chin strap should be snug and secure. Your helmet should not be too tight or too loose. If your helmet is pushed back off your brow it may slide out of the way when you fall, allowing your forehead, nose or mouth to hit the floor and be injured. The helmet should be no further than two fingers above your brow line.

Mouth Guard

Next, your mouth guard. If you have had extensive (and expensive) dental work, check with your dentist to see what they recommend you wear. Otherwise there are a variety of products on the market. You can get some from sporting goods stores that range in price from $10 – $60 with dental insurance for you should something happen to your teeth while you are wearing their product. Walmart has inexpensive ones in their sporting goods section that work just fine for most people. (And the upside of cheap is that you can afford more than one so you can keep a spare in your skate bag just in case.) One of the most popular brands for roller derby players is SISU, which is more expensive but comfortably small and perforated to avoid excess spit buildup.
No matter which mouth guard you choose, remember you have to form it to fit your mouth. Don’t expect to just take it out of the package and pop it in your mouth and have it fit comfortably.

Knee pads

Right now, if you are still trying to master crossovers you are probably thinking you want the most low profile kneepads you can find. But you would be wrong. You are going to fall on your knees. A lot. At every practice. Sometimes on purpose, sometimes by accident. Trust us, the more padding your knee pads have, the better protection they will offer you and the happier you will be after falling drills. A good rule of thumb is to pinch the padding in the center of the knee plate and not have it feel like your fingers are almost touching. That is a sign of too little padding. The more you weigh, the more important it is to have a good amount of padding to protect you when you fall.
Other things to consider are size and how they go on. Some pads slide over your feet and up your leg, while others have straps that Velcro around. Most have additional straps that fasten below the knee to keep them from sliding out of place. Ask around for recommendations and try on different brands if you can.

Elbow Pads

The same advice applies to elbow pads. Although we don’t purposely fall on our elbows, you want a reasonable amount of padding and plate to protect you for those unexpected times when you can’t avoid landing on them.

Wrist Guards

There are many different styles of wrist guard to choose from, so as long as they offer the proper protection, the rest is up to your personal preference. Some have a plastic guard held in place by 2 Velcro straps while others fully encase your wrist and offer thick plastic cups on the palm of your hands. There are a million other styles in between. The main thing is to make sure they fit you snugly and will keep your wrist from hyper-extending or allowing your wrist to break if you hit the floor. If the plastic flexes or you have too much wiggle room, they will not protect you when you need it. If you are smaller you may need to buy children’s sizes to get them to fit correctly.

Optional Gear

Knee Gaskets

If you’ve had knee issues in the past, you will probably want to invest in added protection there. Gaskets are worn under the regular knee pad, provide an additional layer of padding and compression, and help keep the knee pad from slipping.

Tailbone Pads

Ideally, a roller derby skater falls forward to make use of his/her knee pads, or chooses a side to fall on if falling backwards. A fall straight backwards can mean tailbone trauma. Skate suppliers offer protection for the tailbone in the form of a clip-on pad to the back of the shorts or a pair of padded shorts to wear underneath regular practice/game clothing.

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Staying Hydrated

by Veruc Assault


It’s hot out there, and roller derby practice will work up a sweat! Make sure you are hydrated throughout practice as well as throughout the day so you can get the most out of your practice time.

Why Water is Important

  • Water makes up over 50% of our body weight and 70-75% of our muscles. You cannot go a week without consuming water of some form.
  • Water helps with digestion and absorption of minerals and nutrients in our body.
  • Water helps maintain your body temperature.
  • Water protects your vital organs.
  • Without water your body can reach a state of dehydration. 

Ensuring You Are Drinking Enough Water

You should consume enough ounces of water per day to equal half of your body weight in pounds. This can be through liquids and food. Example: If you weigh 140 pounds, you should consume at least 70 ounces of water.
Signs of dehydration to watch for:
  • Cramps
  • Fatigue
  • Increased heart rate
  • Increased body temp
  • Decreased muscular strength
  • Slow reaction time
  • Poor concentration
  • Shortness of breath
In one hour of exercise, your body can lose up to one quart of water. So keep the fluids going during practice. Here is a simple guide on how to prevent dehydration:
  • Drink 16-24 oz of water two hours before practice.
  • Drink 8 oz during warm ups.
  • Drink 6-12 oz every 15-20 minutes during practice.
  • Drink 8 oz, 30 minutes after practice is over.
Your body weight should be the same before practice and after practice.

Resources

www.cdc.gov/nutrition/everyone/basics/water.html
www.eatright.org

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

The Basics: Derby stance

Fresh Meat Derby Stancing



What is Derby Stance?
Derby Stance: The basic body position that provides stability, speed, agility and power when playing roller derby.
Balance is crucial in roller derby! Bending your knees, tightening your core and keeping your head up are keys to balancing in derby stance.



How to Execute Derby Stance

  • Squat down. Your feet and knees should be shoulder width apart, balancing your weight between your feet.
  • Bend your knees to a 90-degree angle. They should be directly above your skates.
  • Hold your back straight.
  • Open your chest up, making sure your shoulders are pressed back.
  • Your shoulders, knees, and toes should all lineup.
  • Get LOW! Getting low will let your legs work as shock absorbers when you get hit and help stabilize your body.

Why Derby Stance is Amazing

  • It’s harder to fall.
  • If you do fall, you will most likely fall on your protected knees.
  • You can skate faster.
  • You can execute a proper crossover.

How can you practice derby stance at open skate?

Leg Burners

Start out by skating one lap at regular speed. Once that lap is completed, sprint half a lap (you don’t have to go incredibly fast, just enough that you will not stop while you are coasting). After you have sprinted half a lap, squat into proper derby stance position and coast half a lap maintaining derby stance and not lifting your skates off of the ground. After you have made it half a lap, sprint again for half a lap, then repeat derby stance for a half a lap. Continue doing this for a lap or two. You will figure out on your own why they are called leg burners. Remember to keep your hands at your sides to avoid supporting yourself with your arms.
Phase 2: While in derby stance, move your feet apart and together repeatedly without your wheels leaving the floor in order to continue to propel yourself while in derby stance instead of just coasting. We call these “watermelons,” and it requires using the muscles of your inner thighs and outer glutes to maintain speed. These muscles are extremely important in roller derby! See how far you can continue this stance without stopping or standing upright.

How to Practice Derby Stance at Home

Wall Sits

Sit with your back against the wall and your thighs parallel to the ground. Keeping your back flat against the wall, hold the position for 30-60 seconds, release and rest for 30 seconds, then repeat. Keep your hands at your sides! Though this is not exact derby stance (since your weight is leaning backward), it will work the leg muscles necessary for derby stance.

Plain Old Squats

Execute a derby stance, bending your knees to 90 degrees, keeping your feet and knees shoulder width apart and your hands at your sides. Hold for a moment and stand up again. Repeat for a set of 10. Repeat for 2-3 sets.
If you are uncertain if you are getting low enough, try using a chair. It should be at the proper height for you to sit in with your legs at 90 degrees. Perform your squats by standing 6 inches in front of the chair and barely touching the seat while squatting.

Common Mistakes

Are you actually getting low?

Many skaters will think that they are getting low, but they are actually bending at the waist instead of at the knees. Focus on getting your thighs close to parallel with the floor. Your back should not be!

The Difference Between Speed Skating and Derby Skating

People with speed skating experience will often revert to speed skating stance, bending over at the waist. This is fine for going fast, but once hitting is introduced, the skater will be less balanced to take a hit.

Knee Pain

If your knees start hurting and it feels like the knee cap is being pulled to the outside, it is because you aren’t getting low enough to engage the hamstrings properly so the three front muscles are pulling the cap out of place. You may not feel it is natural to bend more, but it actually helps to alleviate the pain.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Making the Most of Open Skates


by Veruc Assault


First off, awesome job for attending an Open Skate Session! The more time you spend on your skates, the more comfortable you will get on them!
When attending open skate, it is always a smart idea to wear your protective gear.
If you do not have gear at this time, take it easy! Some of the activities may be out of your comfort zone without proper protection, so work on getting comfortable rolling first and foremost. There will be plenty of time later for trick spins and jumps when you are geared up!
At open/session skates, the rinks provide games to entertain the skaters. A few of those games can actually help you practice your derby skills.

Red Light/Green Light

The object of this game is to listen to the caller, wait for them to call “Green Light,” skate fast! When the caller shouts “Red Light,” all movement must cease. The person to make it to the end of the rink first wins. This works on attentiveness, starts, stops, and falls. Use your toe stop runs to take off when “Green Light” is called. When “Red Light” is called you can use t-stops, plow stops or reverse toe stops. (All of these stops will be explained and taught during recruitment training!) However, the fastest way to stop is to practice one of your falls. Baseball slides and one knee falls work well with this game. Knee pads are really helpful, as no one wants bruised knees!

Jeff

The Dice Game

The rink guard puts out four to six cones. Everyone starts skating in a counterclockwise direction when the music starts. When the music stops, you must find the nearest cone and stop! This is a great way to practice t-stops, plow stops, and reverse toe stops.

The Limbo

How low can you go?  You’ll have to bend those knees!

Cha Cha Slide/Hokey Pokey

Get out there and enjoy these with the kids! It will help you with stepping and lateral movements. Keep your head up while moving your feet from side to side. On the Cha Cha Slide you will work on your hopping on skates.

Speed Skate

The rink guard sets up two cones and splits the skaters by by age and/or gender. Then skaters are allowed to skate as fast as they can around the two cones for a song or two. This will test your endurance, and you will be able to practice your crossovers! Always try to catch up with the person in front of you. Keep going and don’t stop! You can do it!

Cautions

Always remember that there will be people around you. Some of those people are little and are using skate mates. Avoid them at all costs. You don’t want to plow into a small child. You also need to watch out for the people skating the opposite direction then they should be. Always follow the rink rules and listen to the floor guards.
Lastly, Friday nights are usually teen nights. They are very crowded. It is good practice for weaving and avoiding unexpected falling objects.

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

FCRD: A history




DGD, Season 1 - Photo Courtesy of Fire Branded Photography
DGD, Season 1 – Photo courtesy of Fire Branded Photography

As we move on with the 9th Season of Fountain City Roller Derby (FCRD), it’s fun to look back to see where we’ve come from. FCRD actually started as Dead Girl Derby (DGD). In 2009, the founders of DGD broke off from the Kansas City Roller Warriors. The first season, DGD skated with two teams, Gang Green and Black Plague. The bouts took place at Northland Rolladium Skate Center in Liberty, MO, and the players for the two teams switched after every bout. If there was one thing DGD needed in its first season, it was bodies. It was not unheard of for girls to join the league and be thrown into a game a few weeks shortly thereafter. There was some training, but mostly a sink-or-swim attitude. The league was considered a non-profit organization and was skater owned and operated.


DGD must have been doing something right as it quickly grew to have enough skaters to have 4 teams (called “House” teams) for Season 2. Those teams were the Deadly Sirens, the Royal Pains, the Lovely Lethals and the Fearleaders. New skaters and returning skaters were thrown into a pot and drafted to the 4 teams by selected captains. These skaters would spend the entire season with the same team, a departure from the first season. Season 2 also saw the league move to RiverRoll in Riverside, MO for all of DGD’s games and practices. Each team played each other twice during the regular season.  At the end of the regular season, the teams with the two best records played each other in the first ever championship game. While the Deadly Sirens came in as the proverbial favorite, the Lovely Lethals prevailed and became the first champions of DGD.  
DGD Season 2 - Photo courtesy of Fire Branded Photography
DGD Season 2 – Photo courtesy of Fire Branded Photography



Season 3 of DGD started out with some turmoil. DGD received a letter from a cheer squad in Oklahoma, also called the Fearleaders, threatening to sue DGD for using their name. Not wanting to fight the matter in court, the Fearleaders changed their name to the Shotgun Sheilas. All of the new skaters were put into a pot with the skaters who declared free agency (a first for DGD, any skater unhappy with their team could elect to put their name back into the draft) were drafted to the 4 House teams. The roster of each team swelled to 18 skaters. DGD kept growing and growing. The teams again played 6 regular season games and the Lovely Lethals took on the Shotgun Sheilas in the championship game.  The Sheilas prevailed finishing the season with a perfect 7-0 record. Between season 3 and 4 the Board of Directors disassembled, and 5 founding members established an LLC known as Victrix to manage the league.

TeamLogos3


Season 4 saw DGD leave RiverRoll and search to find a new home.  After a few months of practicing at Levo Gym and Watson’s Rolladium in Blue Springs, DGD found a new home for practice at B&D Skate Center in Independence, MO. The move freed the league to relocate the House bouts to Hale Arena and Kemper Arena in the West Bottoms. Going from a skating rink to arenas that held a minimum of 5,000 people was a huge move for the league and a sign that DGD had staying power and legitimacy, something DGD had been searching for since it first began. The first game at Hale Arena started off with a bang as 1,301 fans showed up in support, easily the largest crowd in the league’s history. The championship game pitted the defending Shotgun Sheilas against the Royal Pains at Kemper Arena. The two teams split the season series leading to a hard fought championship game won by the Royal Pains, giving DGD its third different champion in 3 seasons. Season 4 also saw the return of two teams that had been previously been retired, Black Plague and Gang Green, which made up the introductory Zombie League. These teams were made up of developing skaters who didn’t see playing time for the House teams due to the large roster sizes each House team was now experiencing. The experiment went so well that DGD kept Gang Green and Black Plague for Season 5 to help develop incoming skaters.   




Season 5 brought something that had never been tried in the Kansas City roller derby community, coed roller derby.  About 15 men signed up to join the league and about 30 women decided to join them to form 2 co-ed derby teams, Public Enemies and The Untouchables. These teams played each other 4 separate times at B&D Skate Center. Before the coed bouts, the two revived teams of Black Plague and Gang Green square off in a battle between two set rostered teams, a departure from the rotating teams members from Season 4. The championship game was a rematch of the Season 4 title bout between the Royal Pains and the Shotgun Sheilas to be played again at Kemper Arena.
Season 5 also marked the beginning of the DGD’s travel team.  As a sign of things to come, the travel team skated under the name Fountain City Roller Derby and is made up of some of the best female skaters in FCRD.  FCRD continues to grow as it now consists of 115 members and 9 teams, an amazing achievement for a league that started with 3 skaters just 5 short seasons ago.


DGD, Season 5 - Photo Courtesy of Fire Branded Photography
DGD, Season 5 – Photo courtesy of Fire Branded Photography
NameChange


    Season 6 began with a name change from Dead Girl Derby to Fountain City Roller Derby.  No longer had a league comprised of only girls, the league outgrown the name it had skated under since the beginning.  “Fountain City” is also a tribute to the city in which it represents, Kansas City aka The City of Fountains.  With the interest of coed on the rise, a third coed team called the Usual Suspects was added. Zombie League went back to mashup teams, rather than set rosters to allow newer skaters the ability to learn and play with as many skaters as possible. The season closed with the Royal Pains and Public Enemies taking the championship trophies. FCRD decided to send both a women’s and a coed team to M.A.D.E nationals, and FCRD brought home the championship trophy in both categories!


FCRD Season 6, courtesy of Kate Raclin
FCRD, Season 6 – Courtesy of Zaftig Unicorn Photography


Season 7  - Women’s House Championship game was between Shotgun Sheilas and the Lovely Lethals. This year was the closest competition between the teams. All four teams had a chance to play in the championship game until the last game was played, where points scored became the determining factor. Coed season brought in a fourth team from St. Joseph to play against our three teams, with The Untouchables taking the win in the championship. FCRD sent a women’s team and a coed team to M.A.D.E nationals, bringing home the trophy for coed once again!


2016League
FCRD, Season 7 – Courtesy of Zaftig Unicorn Photography




Season  8 saw an even closer competition between the four House teams. Almost every game was a nail-biter to the end. With smaller rosters, each House team worked harder than ever--making the competition a more even playing field, and super exciting to watch! In the end, the Royal Pains took home the trophy, making it their fourth championship victory overall. This upcoming coed season will be determined in the following games, with the Zombie League games to follow. Zombie League has transitioned from a developmental league to a recreational league, allowing female skaters from House teams and coed teams extra time on skates, as well as the ability to help train and play with our newest skaters.

Season 9 of FCRD brought one major change for the league—new leadership. While the league maintained its four house teams, three coed teams, and zombie league, the behind the scenes projects changed. The new leadership is comprised of Quad Squad and several committee coordinators. Quad Squad is an LLC made up for four league members that run the business aspects of the league, and the committee coordinators are league members that help ensure all the different aspects of the league run smoothly. This season of derby has been one for the books! The Deadly Sirens are soon to take on the Shotgun Sheilas for the championship. This could be the first championship win for the Sirens, and they are hungry to take on the undefeated Shotgun Sheilas, who stand poised to win it all. For coed, this last game determined that the Untouchables are going to take on the Usual Suspects for the championship. Both these teams have played a skillful, fast-paced game, and we’re eager to see who will win the trophy. These championship bouts will take place on September 30th at B&D Skate Center at 6:00pm. You do NOT want to miss out! Zombie League has flourished this season, playing teams from across the Midwest including Franklin County Fury and the Missouri River Rollers, and they will be travelling to Leflore County on September 15th. With skills development and determination, these skaters continue to kick butt and take names even as the newest members of our league. We are so excited to see where they go next!

 




Sunday, July 29, 2018

What to Expect on Recruitment Night



So! You've decided to give derby a chance! The recruitment nights are coming up fast; July 30th and August 22nd. What do you need and what do you need to know before you walk into the rink?
First and foremost you need to know that this is NOT a tryout. This is boot camp designed to teach people of all skill levels.  We will teach you everything you need to know from skating forward and falling safely to assisting and hitting each other on the track!

The schedule for the recruitment night will go like this:

8:00 pm  -- Meet and Greet!  Come meet some of our current skaters and leadership within the league.  Ask questions, get to know one another.  There will be a small game that you can participate in (it's not mandatory) and there might be prizes at the end!  You will sign the waiver at this time.  All other "paperwork" will be done electronically this year!

8:30 pm -- Informational Meeting!  Learn about the league!  We will discuss the structure of the league, introduce you to Quad Squad, let you know about the types of teams, dues structure and training information.

9:00 pm -- Scrimmage time!  You will get to watch a thirty minute scrimmage!  There will be women's only and open division play.  There will be skaters around to answer questions.  The announcer will keep you informed and our refs will keep everything legal!

9:30 pm -- Open Skate!  If you have your own skates and gear, please bring it for open skate.  Rental skates will be available free of charge.  You do not have to skate, you can hang out and chat and get your questions answered.  There will be plenty of people around to help you out! 

I look forward to seeing everyone!  We are excited to have you!



Second Recruitment Night!

So! You've decided to give derby a chance! Our second recruitment night is just around the corner! What do you need and what do you ...