At my first Derby 101 class, one of my coaches had suggested that I get longer circular toe stops. Mine were short and an odd shape and she had mentioned that the circular ones would be helpful. I ordered a pair of Bionic Super Stoppers from Bruised Boutique, which came in rather quickly. I changed the toe stops and immediately tried the skates on. I already felt better about getting back up off of the ground and on balancing on my toe stops. Hooray for that!
This past Saturday I had my second Derby 101 class. I started skating around during warm ups and was starting to feel a little better about skating. We spent the class practicing plow stops, T-stops, slaloms, and lunges. I could NOT for the life of me get the slaloms or lunges. I figured that it was just me being a new skater and not being confident. That is until the coaches brought up that we may need to loosen our trucks if we’re having a hard time with edging. After practice, I skated over to my coach and showed her my skates. She quickly noticed that my trucks were very tight and that I would need to loosen them up. She also suggested on getting some softer cushions, which I plan on doing this week. If anyone has a suggestion on a soft cushion to add to my skates, let me know!
We also worked on cross-overs. I had seen a lot of talk about cross-overs from my Derby friends and had gathered that they were quite difficult to do. I was a bit nervous about them, but started working on them. During practice, my trucks were still tight, so some of it was hard to do anyway. I’m hoping that with my skates being a little more comfortable that it’ll be easier to work on the cross-over, even if it just helps me be more confident in my edging and skating.
I think my favorite part of class is when we go over our goals in the beginning of class and then at the end, we talk about how we did. Everyone improves so much in such little time and it’s so exciting to see. I love getting feedback from the coaches about what I need to work on and how to work on it. They’re extremely knowledgeable and helpful and super motivating.
I did skate for a few minutes last night at the park by my apartment. The difference in my confidence is insane! I’m already feeling a bit better about being on wheels, even if I’m still a little nervous to skate around people and of going fast. In time, I know that will all fade away.
Meanwhile, I’m just trying to find a roller-rink somewhere near me that is not so sketchy.