*Teamwork makes the dream work!* That is a phrase that my teammates and I say (and maybe overuse) a lot these days. Yes, it’s cute and kind of funny, but it’s also the absolute, god’s-honest truth. If you don’t work together with the people on your team, you almost certainly won’t achieve the goals that you’ve set out for yourselves. This is the beginning of derby season in Canada, also known as the honeymoon stage (before everyone is burnt out and annoyed by each other’s gear stink), so that’s why I was inspired this month to collect some great blog posts and articles from around the derbyverse about what it means to be on a strong roller derby team.
One of my favourite derby bloggers out there, Elektra Q-tion, writes a lot about the culture and politics of modern roller derby, and she has some advice for us about How to Be A Happier Teammate.
My pal Booty Quake from Roller Derby Athletics is a very cool lady and excellent teammate, and she was inspired to spread her warm feelings with a Love Letter to Teammates.
Being part of a team isn’t just about when you’re on the track. What you do for your team off the track is just as important to forge those bonds. Back in December, I wrote about being the best non-skating teammate I could be at the World Cup.
Okay, let’s do the work! Here’s a fun take on a classic practice drill. Everyone has played Freeze Tag at practice a million times, right? Well, why not do it as a team! Get into groups of two, three or four teammates, depending on your attendance numbers at practice. The rules are the same as regular Freeze Tag (one “It” is trying tag the other skaters to freeze them, and the free skaters can release the frozen skaters by skating under their outstretched arms), but the “teams” must stay together and be touching at all times, including the “It” team. You’ll work on speed control and communication, and probably a lot of yelling and laughing.
Photos courtesy of Bob Ayers