Sunday, May 13, 2012

Sugardale is now a Derby Doll

I am not exactly sure how long ago it was, perhaps about two years, when a friend had a birthday party at a roller skating rink. A few friends and I actually drove to Phoenix from San Diego for the day just to go. And I discovered I was pretty good on skates. I had skated a bunch when I was a kid: the annual school field trip to Sycamore Springs roller skating rink (because of course little Seneca, Kansas didn't have one), or skating on the smooth sidewalks around the courthouse a block away from my childhood home, or on the concrete floors of our basement. Me on my quads and my brother in his strap-on-over-the-shoe roller blades.

I guess all that childhood training really sticks with you, because years later at that birthday party, I was doing pretty well. After skating, my boyfriend said something to me like, "You know they have roller derby now." When we got home we looked it up and I knew right then that I wanted to do it.

After a quick Google search I found that San Diego had a roller skating rink, so my sister and I went skating one night, and all my dreams were crushed. Ah man, MY ACHING KNOBS hurt so badly, I couldn't even skate for the whole night, or think about putting skates on ever again.  But alas I got back on my parents' insurance, and eventually had bunion surgery in August of 2011. By January 2012 I was cleared to do whatever I wanted. I could run, jump, and yes, skate!

During my recovery from bunion surgery, I was obsessively researching roller derby, how the game was played, what type of skates to buy, which league to join, (San Diego has a few). I ended up choosing The San Diego Derby Dolls because they seemed the most organized, played on both banked and flat track, and their practice facility was about 8 blocks from my house.

Every three months they recruit new skaters to join their boot camp training. I didn't feel like I was quite ready for the January signup (the non use of my legs during bunion surgery recovery left them pretty weak and measly), and a was a little low on cash at that time anyway, but I made it for the April orientation, and started bootcamp.

The boot camp is divided into three levels. The first level is mostly learning how to skate with good posture, how to fall safely, and how to do a few different types of stops. Level two is learning agility, gaining speed and endurance, blocking, as well as transitioning from forwards to backwards skating and back again. And level three is where I'll really start learning to play roller derby, taking and giving hits, learning strategy, and partaking in scrimmages. After I graduate from level three, I can be recruited to a team.

I just passed level 1 last week. (Cool!) Now all of that falling safely has turned into getting hit and hopefully falling safely and getting back up quickly to get back on the track. Man it is so much fun.

Since this blog is about all things Sugardale, and since Sugardale will be my roller derby alter ego (we can't officially choose names until we make it to level 3 in boot camp, but am pretty positive I'm going with Sugardale), I will also be posting about my life as a Derby Doll.


Nadia said...


Jodi Wade said...

I just read/skimmed through your entire bunion blog. You poor thing! I didn't even really know what bunions were. Good old google. I think I am getting a tailor's bunion!

Roller derby sounds fun!

St. Paco said...

Definitely bad ass.

I've been meaning to write something for KFG about the derby for a while (they've had it here in Tucson for some years now). This news gives me more incentive.

Congrats on your decision.

Anonymous said...

Aaah that's pretty awesome! Have an awesome time, can't wait to read more about it :) !

Anonymous said...

That's so cool, I live in the UK and one of my friends has been playing roller derby for about a year. She loves it, and I love watching her play! Good luck and keep us up to date with how it's going!