I’m a Roller Derby widower. Like a golf or football widow, just a different sport and I’m a bloke.
Vicky [wife] aka Brace Kelly 53 has been skating and bouting for 2 years now, even being featured in Woman magazine (UK).
Except I’ve now got to strap 4 wheels to each foot, don pads, helmet and mouth guard and somehow stay upright!
Am I going to replace my ultrarunning? No, not at all. But I needed something different, challenging and that would test me physically in ways I haven’t been tested before.
The other massive side benefit is that to be a competent skater I’m realising very quickly that I need to be a lot more flexible than I currently am. Therefore I’m having to stretch more in order to progress.
Now I don’t know anyone who says they enjoy stretching. There probably are people, but I’m not one and don’t know any. But that inner perfectionist in me knows I have to do more if I want to be better.
As a result, I’m expecting my running form to get a whole load better too. Not only am I working complimentary muscle groups (glutes, abductors, core) as well as cardiovascular system, I’m also increasing my flexibility ….. well that’s the theory anyway!
As I write this post I’ve spent approximately 6 hours on ‘quads’ (skater language for skates with 2×2 wheels rather than inlines) in 4 sessions. 2 were roller disco (i.e. Just skating) and the other 2 were Derby training sessions.
So the next step is for me to pass my ‘mins’, kind of like a certificate of competence and from there I’ll be able to then compete in full contact bouts!
I’ll leave you with a few photos of Vicky in action for now. But go onto YouTube and search Roller Derby if you want to see what it looks like in a bout.
Photo’s courtesy of Laura MacDonald (insta: @leapylees)