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Archive for February, 2008

B’ham Dames ♥ Leeds Dolls ith Tough Love

Posted by Fury on February 23, 2008

February 2008

Goddess bless the great British privatised motorway services.  The dingy grey roadside affairs of my youth, featuring bolted-on wooden prison toilet seats, have been replaced with gleaming outposts that sell cappuccino.  Sure, a sandwich and coke will set you back the price of roast Sunday lunch provisions for five, but as I was soaking up the early morning sun in a comfortable café off the M42, I could hardly be bothered about such things.   Today the Blitz Dames were headed out on a derby-filled road trip to Leeds. 

The Leeds Roller Dolls are one of the many newer roller derby leagues who have come together blaze track in this country. In the true cooperative spirit of DIY roller derby, they had helped the Blitzdames earlier in the weekend with a generous loan of equipment for a BBDD sports session with the University of Birmingham Rugby team.  So, the ‘Dames were delighted to accept the invitation to work with their roller sisters in LRD on some derby training collaboration. The enthusiasm was mutual, as the entirety of Leeds Roller Dolls had just gotten kitted out in full protective gear in anticipation of the day’s hard knocks to come.  What a great attitude!

The LRD’s head trainer, John Kirkham (an accomplished jam skater), started the session with a knackering quick-manoever warm-up drill.  The BBDD then took the lead with derby-specific stretches to loosen everyone up, and garner a few smiles as we displayed our lack of modesty (just tell me that stretch doesn’t look like a stripper).  One of BBDD’s top blockers, Bee Bentley, continued the session as she helped the Leeds ladies take the sheen off their pads with a barrage of falling drills.  Falling safely -with proper equipment!- is the best protection against injury; so it was important to make falling technique even more automatic that snapping up knee high socks in your team colours.  Having spent some quality time hitting the leisure center floor, the training progressed through all the derby action we could pack into two hours.  The focus included pack skills, endurance work, and whips (demonstrated by the agile Violet Attack).

The rock hard women of Leeds took everything BBDD dished out, including press-ups for getting out of pack formation, and the occasional surprise meeting with immovable surfaces.  During one of the rare breaks in the action, the LRD stylishly produced jaffa cakes to keep the masses fueled. By the last conditioning exercise, smiles mixed readily with grimaces of pain.

Afterwards everyone shared a huge Mexican restaurant table where the burritos were solidly lackluster, but the company couldn’t have been better.  The Leeds Roller Dolls are dedicated skaters who –like the first modern women’s roller derby leagues in Texas- are undaunted by their newness to the sport.   LRD even make it an advantage, by exploring creative solutions unencumbered by needing to follow established protocols.  Both of our leagues learned useful tips from each other’s experiences, and too soon it was time to head home. Like the outbound trip, spending time with BBDD mates made the return journey finish in a flash.  It was fab to ‘wreck and roll’ with the Leeds women and we look forward to future training field trips, and other potential collaborative projects with them later this year.

 

Helen Fury 

#10 Birmingham Blitz Derby Dames 

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Posted in B'ham Blitz Derby Dames, Leeds Roller Dolls, Random Reads, United Kingdom | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Rugby Women Trade Scrum for Derby in Brum

Posted by Fury on February 23, 2008

The descripitves of roller derby practice sound like a war film synopsis: pain, impact, high velocities, laughter, courage, strategy, collusion…but to us it’s a good time.   This weekend we joined forces with another set of athletes who similarly prefer their fun flavoured with adrenaline: The University of Birmingham Women’s Rugby team.

The Rugby team rose admirably early on a Saturday, and showed up right on time to meet the Birmingham Blitz Derby Dames at the university campus, only to find out that our sports hall slot was replaced with volleyball.  Despite indignation at the scheduling gaff, it wasn’t nearly enough to deter our collective ranks from getting some skating action!   So, after a brief intro to roller derby game play, complete with video of Rollercon bouts, the groups parted with plans to refuel and car pool to our general practice later that day.

Despite the chaos of nearly 40 women on skates, the practice was amazing! The aim was to give the University athletes an opportunity for team building, cross-training, and an introduction to our sport, sometimes called ‘rugby on skates’. From their performance on Saturday, rugby players clearly deserve their reputation as strong and audacious, and we loved it. 

Mostly they were just fearless. Few had any pads, but these insane gals acted as if they were encased in bubble wrap. Undoubtedly, as rugby athletes, they are used to the hard knocks of full contact sports!  It was the kind of approach that makes us roller derby skaters drool in admiration.

The training agenda focused on drills that all levels could do, teamwork, a few fun games, and endurance/strength training that had all the participants of both teams sweating. The Blitz Dames took to the track near the end for a roller derby demonstration that included a scrimmage jam with all the hard knocks of our game.

The rugby athletes were incredibly quick learners. They won at dodge ball and did their fair share of JUMPING the limbo rope! Did I mention they were FEARLESS? They were testing themselves to see how high the rope could go and even the ones that were a bit wobbly – nailed it! They were simply amazing.

All of the Blitz Dames enjoyed getting to know the University of Birmingham Rugby team, and look forward to joining them on their turf for future events (including a planned one where we will give rugby a go!).  Several of the rugby players plan to try out for the Blitz Dames – and we are more than happy to have them.  We look forward to more cross-training with the rugby league and developing our fitness with these amazing rock hard women!

Wreck n’ Roll,

Blitz Dames

Posted in B'ham Blitz Derby Dames, Bouts/Recaps, United Kingdom | 1 Comment »

WFTDA goes international!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by hooligal on February 21, 2008

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 2/19/08
Contact: Mercy Less
Marketing/PR Chair, WFTDA
marketing@.. .

The Women’s Flat Track Derby Association is proud to announce that
membership is now open to Canadian Leagues! The WFTDA has overcome
administrative and legal hurdles to take this exciting first step
towards becoming a global organization. Our northern sisters will be
eligible if they meet the membership requirements put forth for all
WFTDA leagues:

-75 % of games must be flat track

-Teams in league must be comprised of female quad skaters only.

-51% of league owners must be flat track derby skaters.

-67% of league management must be flat track derby skaters

For additional requirements and paperwork, go online to:
www.wftda.com/ membership. html

Since 2004, the WFTDA has promoted and fostered the sport of womens
flat track derby. The governing philosophy of by the skaters, for
the skaters is adopted by all fifty two member leagues who include
women as primary owners, managers, operators and skaters. All member
leagues have a voice in the decision making process and are entitled
to be nationally ranked, play standardized games and access to future
sponsorship opportunities.

The WFTDA and its member leagues look forward to more flat track derby
in the US, Canada and, some day, the world!

Posted in Announcements, canada | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

j’aime le roller derby en francais,’sti!

Posted by georgiawtush on February 13, 2008

Ok, I may not have mastered the French language as of yet, however there are many players in my league that are perfectly bilingual in both French and English. I think we’re the only league in North America that has bilingual bouts, and the first league in the world to do it (new era)! So in the spirit of international derby, here is an old article about Montreal Roller Derby in French, and not just any French, but the Quebec kind.

Read at your own risk!

Georgia W Tush

LA PRESSE: Le roller derby: freak show ou sport extrême?
Category: Sports

http://www.cyberpresse.ca/article/20070518/CPACTUEL/705180821/5159/CPACTUEL

Le roller derby: freak show ou sport extrême?
Le roller derby est de retour à Montréal. Des filles, de l’action, du jeu rude. À voir absolument! (Photo André Pichette, La Presse)
Agrandir l’image

Le roller derby est de retour à Montréal. Des filles, de l’action, du jeu rude. À voir absolument!
Photo André Pichette, La Presse

Jean-Christophe Laurence

Vous pensez que le hockey est rude? C’est que vous n’avez jamais assisté à un tournoi de roller derby. Très hot dans les années 60 et 70, ce sport-contact en patins à roulettes est en train de revenir en force.

Depuis quelques années, des dizaines de ligues féminines ont explosé dans les milieux underground aux États-Unis. La bonne nouvelle, c’est qu’après Los Angeles, New York ou Dallas, Montréal vient d’emboîter le pas.

«J’étais tannée d’attendre que quelqu’un lance le truc ici. Alors j’ai pris les devants, raconte la fondatrice Alyssa Kwasny. C’était il y a plus d’un an. J’ai placé des petites annonces sur le Web. Treize filles sont venues à la première rencontre. Certaines ne savaient même pas dans quoi elles s’embarquaient. Elles pensaient seulement que ça avait l’air cool!»

Avis aux intéressé(e)s : le deuxième match de la saison aura lieu demain soir à l’aréna Saint-Louis, dans le Mile End. Le tout se fera dans une ambiance punk, digne des meilleurs manifestations «do it yourself» (faites-le vous-mêmes). Entre freak show et sport extrême, la soirée sera animée par deux lutteurs mexicains en « hot pants» et l’ineffable Plastik Patrik, travesti bien connu du nightlife montréalais

«Avant, le roller derby était un gros truc professionnel, souligne Alyssa. Aujourd’hui, nous sommes plus dans l’esprit associatif, alternatif. Ce qui explique ce côté marginal. Cela dit, on ne veut pas seulement s’adresser aux amateurs de punk. Il y a toutes sortes de filles dans notre ligue. Des étudiantes, des infirmières, des profs, des filles avec des enfants. Alors nous visons toutes sortes de publics.»

D’accord. Mais qu’est-ce qui peut bien pousser ces filles à se crêper le chignon en patins à roulettes ?

Le roller derby a beau être un show, c’est aussi un sport dangereux, propice aux gros bleus et aux commotions cérébrales. Qui plus est, chacune doit payer une mensualité pour être membre de cette coop roulante.

«Il y a un paquet de raisons, répond Alyssa. Personnellement, j’aime bien ce côté inclusif. Il faut avoir de la technique, mais on n’a pas besoin d’être super en forme. Ni de mesurer six pieds. Pour certaines, c’est aussi une façon différente de faire de l’exercice. Pour d’autres, c’est carrément un exutoire. Ça permet de laisser sortir le méchant !»

La Montreal Roller Derby League compte actuellement une quarantaine de joueuses divisées en trois équipes : les Contrabadidas, les Filles du Roy et la Racaille. Mais les portes sont ouvertes pour de nouvelles inscriptions. Après la saison, qui se termine fin juin, plusieurs iront panser leurs plaies ou passeront à autre chose. D’où l’importance de renouveler le «roster».

Montréal peut-il faire vivre une ligue de roller derby ? Pour l’instant, c’est bien parti, note Alyssa. Malgré son côté marginal, le circuit a déjà attiré l’attention des médias anglophones, de RDS et de l’émisison Infoman.

Quant au public, il semble au rendez-vous. Contre toute attente, l’aréna Saint-Louis était plein lors du premier match de la saison, il y a deux semaines. La plupart des spectateurs étaient dans les gradins, bien à l’abri. Mais sachez-le : pour un 2 $ supplémentaire, on a le droit de s’asseoir au bord de la piste, aux premières loges pour recevoir un patin (à quatre roues, précisons) en pleine gueule.

On appelle ça les «billets suicides».

Les règles du jeu

Le roller derby revient à Montréal. Rudesse, coups parfois vicieux et vitesse sont à l’honneur. (Photo André Pichette, La Presse)
Agrandir l’image

Le roller derby revient à Montréal. Rudesse, coups parfois vicieux et vitesse sont à l’honneur.
Photo André Pichette, La Presse

Grosso modo, le roller derby fonctionne comme suit : deux équipes de cinq «rolleuses» tournent autour d’un anneau.

L’important n’est pas d’aller vite, mais de marquer des points.

Chaque équipe compte une attaquante, dont la mission est de franchir le mur de «bloqueuses» qui se dresse devant elle et ce, pendant des rounds de deux minutes.

Chaque «passage» compte pour un point. Les bloqueuses ne doivent pas seulement nuire à l’adversaire, mais aussi faciliter le travail de leur attaquante.

Tous les coups sont officieusement permis et les règles sont transgressées avec plaisir. Comme à la lutte, les arbitres se font un devoir de fermer les yeux.

Un peu d’histoire

Le roller derby ne date pas d’hier. Cet ancêtre du sport extrême a été créé en 1935, au plus creux de la grande dépression, par un promoteur nommé Leo Seltzer.

Dans les années 50, le phénomène explose, avec ses ligues organisées, ses diffusions à la télé, ses joueurs vedettes et ses équipes-cultes comme les New York Chiefs et San Francisco Bay Bombers. Sa popularité culmine à la fin des sixties et atteint même Hollywood, qui produit deux ou trois films sur le sujet -dont Kansas City Bomber avec Raquel Welch, et Rollerball, relecture futuriste mettant en vedette James Caan.

>> À voir sur YouTube : extraits deTony Roman, des Bay Bombers de San Francisco, un des plus célèbres «rolleurs» de l’histoire. Rien à voir avec le chanteur québécois Tony Roman.

__________________
Ligue de roller derby de Montréal: samedi 19h30 à l’arena Saint-Louis, 5633, rue Saint-Dominique. Entrée 12$

Posted in canada, montreal roller derby, Press | Tagged: , | 1 Comment »

The Scandinavian National Team

Posted by Holy Hooligan on February 10, 2008

When I read Hooligals post about the plans for Canada and England to meet this summer I realized how far we up here in the north have to go to be able to compete on a national level. But then it struck me. We almost have enough skaters for a national team already!

When the first steps of Stockholm Rollerderby were taken back in April ’07 we were convinced that we were the only swedes in the world that were into this sport. But pretty soon we were, much to our delight, proven wrong. Every now and then skaters from leagues all over send us mail and tell us how great it is that we have gotten things going “back home”. And it’s not just swedes that drop us a line, skaters with roots in any of the scandinavian countries consider us their “home team” since we still are the only ones over here.

Even though we hardly are a functioning league in Stockholm, Scandinavia is just a few skaters away from having a full National Team if all scandinavians out there would team up! Thanks to skaters like Vix Viking(LRG), Kategory 5(TXRD), Tear E. Hatchet(BBDD), Kit Lizette(LRR) and Swede Hurt(JCRG) scandinavia is already putting it’s mark in the derby world.

And when you think about it, that is not so different from the way it looks in “the big sports” like hockey and football. When the swedish national team is put together very few of the players are playing in the leagues back home. In hockey most are playing in the NHL and in football they are playing Premier League, Serie A, Bundesliga or some other league.

Ok, I realize that there are very few other similarities. We have no budget compared to SvIF or SvFF, we do not have thousands of players to chose from, we do not have huge traning facilities or 36.000 supporters coming to our games. But still, I must be allowed to dream about a Scandinavian Roller Derby Team!

But dreaming about what might be true in a distant future is not the only reason to write this blog-post. Another reason to write it is to make sure that everyone knows that all the help and support we get from all you scandinavians out there is very, very appreciated. Not that we don’t appreciate and value the help and support that we get from all you non-scandinavians, but the happiness and joy that we see in the mails from all these emigrats, when they find out about the league back home, is something special. And we love it!

And lets face it. Skaters like Vix, Swede, Kit and the others are the Zlatan, Foppa Forsberg and Fredrik Ljungberg of roller derby! We follow their leagues, check results and try to find out how well “our” skaters did in the last bout. Knowing that there are skaters out there that we know and know us and where we are(both geographically, culturally and in the league development area), and to be able to follow their development, is one of those things that really help keep our spirits up when there is no place to practice, nowhere to get hold of skates, no-one who understand what the drokk you are talking about when you mention the Rust Riot and the rain is pouring down so hard that it even would be impossible to skate on the parkinglot outside the door!

To say it in the most simple way:
Vi älsklar er!

Posted in europe, Stockholm Roller Derby | 5 Comments »

Canada vs England?

Posted by hooligal on February 8, 2008

Psssttt…a little birdy (ok ok the Canadian Roller Girls group..) told me that Canada is gathering a team to come play some bouts in the UK, in June. HOW EXCITING!! This would be the first trans-atlantic bout I do believe.

 Here’s the message that was sent out:

“Hello everyone,

There is a phenomenal opportunity for us Canadians to band together to
form a team and play England in June of this year!

Hoochie Mama (OCDG) and I are looking for ~20 ladies who are
interested in going. Ideally, we’d love to have 2 or 3 girls from each
league participate, making it truly a national enterprise!

To date, 2 games have been slotted in England (and there is a
possibility of a third) for early June. The games will fall between
June 5th and 14th.

We invite all interested girls to submit a resume (file newly uploaded
into the ‘Files section’ of this group, called “Team_Canada. doc”), and
a letter of recommendation from the coach/captain to us. We hope to
fund this trip through fundraisers and sponsorship, and hope to keep
the cost to each girl minimal.

Please post any questions and we will respond ASAP. Email resumes and
cover letters to : jen.prosser@ gmail.com and
hoochiemama@ oilcityderbygirl s.ca – (We will also have an ‘Eastern
Coordinator’ very soon, and we will post her information in the next
couple of days)

xox

Jenny Rocket
Calgary Roller Derby Association”

So Canadian ladies, GET ON IT!

Posted in Bouts/Recaps, Calgary Roller Derby Association, canada, E-Ville Roller Derby, London Rockin Rollers, London Roller Girls, United Kingdom | Tagged: , , , | 9 Comments »

Love Hurts

Posted by hooligal on February 7, 2008

CLICK TO ENLARGE

Come and check out Roller Derby, Saturday Feb 16.

Tickets on the door (arrive early!) or through PayPal, links on www.myspace.com/melbournegrindgirls or www.rollerderbyvictoria.wikispaces.com

see you trackside

Posted in Bouts/Recaps, Melborne Grind Girls, oceania, Victorian Roller Derby | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

FIRST EUROPEAN INTERLEAGUE BOUT: SVRG vs LRR

Posted by hooligal on February 4, 2008

Awsome video from the Stuttgart Valley Rollergirlz showing the highlights of their game with the London Rockin Rollers!

Posted in Bouts/Recaps, europe, London Rockin Rollers, Stuttgart Valley Rollergirlz, United Kingdom, Videos | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »