January 30, 2014

What's Your Roller Derby Spirit Animal?

Ever wonder what kind of skater you are?  Do you ever feel inadequate with the skill-set you have? Wishing that you could just skate like that one girl on the team you envy? Wait, really?  WHY?! Roller derby is about a place for everyone; every body type and every skill-set. Every skater is unique and guess what? We need all of them. You might go around thinking that you're not as valuable as the other players on your team, and you would be very, very, wrong. One day you'll go up against this bad ass team of chicks and there will be one girl that no one can stop but you. You'll just get the way she skates when no one else does. So buck up little camper!  Roller derby is not a sport about feeling sorry for yourself, it's about taking control. Now I'm sure I didn't capture all the roller derby spirit animals but I assume they're a lot like Pokemon and you can just add more when you come across one.  Read on!

The Honey Badger

Cuz you don't give a shiiiiz.  Honey badger don't care.  She don't care one bit.  The honey badger is the lady who hits hard, hits fast, and manages the pack with her feisty skating.  She tornadoes around, faster and with more direction than you thought a skater could, and is the skater that makes every jammer sweat when she's on the other team.  Is she always with her wall?  Not necessarily. This one likes to go rogue and fly solo while she plays offense for her jammer and picks off the opposing players one at a time, leaving more than a few bruises in her wake.  She's mean, she's scary, and every hit feels more and more like defeat.

The Bull

This skater is the most fearless skater on the track because she knows the WFTDA rules like the back of her hand, or should I say, hoof?  So when something doesn't sit right with her she digs her heels in, takes a deep breath, and charges ahead at full speed.  Calling time-outs to challenge a call is her specialty and instead of playing reckless, she plays smart. Opposing players fear her, because they know when she challenges she has a good reason.  Her teammates go to her for advice, council, and questions, wanting to know as much about derby as she does.  If you're a bull, stay that way.  If you're not, pick up a rule book and get studying!

The Wolf

Do you ever find yourself herding all of the other skaters so that they're where they need to be?  You're always nipping at their heels by yelling, pointing, and physically moving them with your body?  You're the wolf; mother of the pack.  You know that keeping your pack together will mean life or death for the jam and you're not taking any chances.  Newer skaters look to you to tell them what to do, where to go, and how to improve.  Off the track, you're more of a mother, giving advice to inexperienced skaters and explaining that last jam to anyone with a 'deer in the headlights' look.  On the track, you're a wolf, keeping everybody in line and forcing them to improve their game.

The Emperor Penguin

A very interesting fact about the Emperor Penguin is that mates for life. It finds its "soul mate," looks all over the beach for the perfect pebble, and then presents it to its true love and they are together forever.  Awww... If you are an Emperor Penguin on the track, it simply means that you skate better with a partner in crime. You tend to use the people around to you to land your hits, booty block, and force the track cut on that pesky little jammer when your partner drags her. This girls is your derby soul mate and you know each other like the back of your skate.  There are also penguin skaters that work well with any partner, but the principle is the same, they know that 2 pairs of skates are better than 1.

The Springbok

This little skater is a jumpy, hoppy, all over the place jammer.  You get low as you approach the pack and then spring into action, flying past everyone in front of you.  If you manage to get caught, it won't be for long. You're great a juking, stepping, toe-stop work, and you leave people behind in a flash!  You know one of the most important lessons in derby, levels matter.  You've also taken a few lessons from Patches O'Hoola Han and have learned how to dodge, duck, dip, dive, and dodge!

The Ram

You're a great jammer, but you're not a springbok.  Instead of hopping around and trying to dodge your opponents, you power through with incredible force.  Because you're solid on your skates and know people can't hit you out easily, you bide your time and just muscle your way through.  Hearing a "No Pack!" is your favorite sound, because you've managed to power push the wall to the brink.  As much as the pack tries to slow down with you forcing them forward, they simply can't.  No amount of snow plows or hockey stops can stop you from getting through, and the team depends on you to go up against those tough blockers that dominate the track.

Didn't find your spirit animal?  Not to worry, there are dozens of them, all equally important for a team to be successful.  Whatever your spirit animal is, just own it.  You don't have to skate like your derby crush, or Suzy Hotrod, Bonnie Thunders, or Jackie Daniels.  We all now that it's not about what you got, but what you make of what you got.  No one's born a great derby player, so stop comparing yourself to others, and just become the absolute best of what you are!


The Original Skankster

1 comment:

  1. Newborn sheep? I'm knock kneed and wobbly as all get out...but with a little help, herded into the pack!