VRDL Bootcamp Recap.

So last weekend I had a house full of Dames and we were all attending the Victorian Roller Derby League (VRDL) Master Class.

I wasn’t sure what we were in for. A few weeks before I got a call from Mustdash telling me about this bootcamp and that they were all coming over and staying with me! Her excitement and enthusiasm is highly contagious so I booked a spot without hesitation.

Day 1 though I could feel myself hesitating. I hadn’t trained full on for awhile now. I had been doing some outdoor skating but I knew my fitness level wasn’t up to scratch.

Once we got there though, my attitude change immediately. To be lead by such professional (and genuinely super nice) trainers, I felt at ease and ready to throw my entire self in to what I could.

Our first day we worked on positional blocking and speed control techniques, evasive jamming and on skates agility. We tackled juking, swooping, quick cuts and leaps. We learnt how to judge pack and in play distances and how to apply these as part of your teams strategy. Thrown in the middle of that was one of THE MOST intense plyo and strength sessions I have ever had the pleasure of pushing through. Insane! But it gave me a total ‘WOW’ moment.

Day 2 I wasn’t sure how my body was going to hold up. The morning session was all about partner blocking “AKA making your team mate look awesome makes YOU Aweome!” This is where we concentrated on walls, breaking walls and backwards blocking. I loved the backwards blocking, favourite drill of the weekend!

The next 2 sessions I used the opportunity to sit in on the optional seminars and was able to sit within the round with Axis of Evon to discuss how to be a sustainable DIY Athlete. She had some fantastic insight in to this from her own experiences and I now know how much I really need to focus on my off skate training if I ever want to achieve the level of fitness I desire.

Kitty DeCapitate hosted a discussion on coaching / rules and strategy (among other things). The main advice that held with me was her emphasis on goal setting, breaking it down from a broad goal in to ways you are actually going to achieve this. Also her great opinion about motivating yourself and others and to hear her true passion for the sport. She wrote a fantastic article on her blog Yay Roller Derby! which picks up on some points she spoke about in our discussion.

The last moment of the bootcamp was scrimmage. I already knew my body wasn’t coping that day, so I sat myself out rather then injure myself (or anyone else on the track). It was fantastic to watch. I was so impressed with all my friends that skated that day. Just to see how they’d improved over only 2 days was incredible! I couldn’t help scream out from the sidelines when one of them got lead jammer, or scream out ‘protect your point’!

Thanks to Eve Yllanside for the below photos… Check out her blog Diary of a Derby Wannabe for her recap of the weekend and the awesome video she put together!

A few of our lovely trainers

Team debrief before the next Jam

Mustdash lining up on the jammer line.

Some of the Broken Hill Derby Girls

If you ever get the chance to attend a VRDL bootcamp, absolutely snap up the opportunity. You’ll totally high-five me for it!


Swish Cariboom

Thanks VRDL for hosting such an amazing weekend. You really kick started my 2012 in to high gear and I’m really looking forward to my derby year ahead!

6 thoughts on “VRDL Bootcamp Recap.

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