Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Training with the Bristol Harbour Harlots

On Sunday I had to attend a mandatory rules session for failing the rules test. Loads of people turned up who didn't have to and our coach just talked through the rules. On the whole I think everyone knows thier shit, it's just a lot to learn all at once without any practical application. The first time we were rules-tested every single team member failed and coach was piiii-iiiissed! But before you start scrimmaging and get some context it just doesn't sink in. Even now I am having trouble translating what I've learnt on paper to practical application on the track. Also, we're all getting so many minors I'm sure half of them must be going unnoticed!

After the rules nerd-out we all piled into cars and got on the road to Bristol to train with the Harbour Harlots. The team is roughly the same size as ours and started around the same time. They are coached by Wonton Destruction ½ doz, originally from the Pirate City Rollers in NZ, so have a lot in common with our team, although Wonton was not previously a coach as our Aussie coach was. They are also hoping to start bouting in December so fingers crossed for some healthy and geographically convenient competition!

The session wasn't too hard going, although the entire warm-up was clockwise round the track. I think it is really important to train clockwise some of the time, not only to avoid some sort of freakishly lopsided physique but to maintain core stability and improve balance. We don't do nearly enough of this and so it was pretty scary for me and I only managed one crossover in sprint laps!

After that we did some static and some rolling basic blocking drills, just getting used to contact and focussing on effective target zones. Unfortunately for TBB's two attending assistant coaches Judge Redd and Hell Neenio, the car from Cardiff ferrying the coach and team founder/co-organiser of the session and a couple of other girls had got completely lost and didn't make it until the end of the session! So Redd and Neenio had to take the blocking session not having had much experience themselves. They did a damn good job having been put on the spot!

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