Rocktown Rollers's Fan Box

Friday, August 29, 2008

Derby Talk: Aug 27

Tuesday Practice:
We had a great turnout at Tuesday's practice. A few new drills were introduced to help endurance and skills. Thom reminded everyone about the 45 degree stance we should be skating in AT ALL TIMES. One new drill is 10 20 30 of sprint, and then hold the 45 degree stance. Each set is equal time; i.e. 10 second sprint, 10 second hold. This works the skating muscles needed to improve endurance and skills. The second new drill was weaving to improve your passing and balance abilities. Everyone skates in a line while the last person weaves through everyone 'till they reach the front. Basic skills are still needed no matter what skill level you are at. We practiced falls, hops, stance, weaves, blocking, and group skating. Some members are meeting tonight (Wednesday) at the Dodger at 6:30 to discuss the new layout of this organization. Others who can't make it will be meeting at Aprils on Friday to do the same. The goal is to have a new organization layout along with the start of a Standards guideline by next week.

Dates to remember:
September 13th – Car wash fund raiser. Info via email/text to followSeptember 14th – Charlottesville Derby Dames will be practicing with us.

September 20th – Sock hop at the Dodger. Brook will be the main contact for this event

Commotion by the Ocean Review:
As you all know Thom, Janna, Paressa, Brook, Kevin, and I took a journey to Virginia Beach to participate in Commotion by the Ocean. Between the 6 of us we learned a lot, represented the TEAM, and made a lot of great contacts. Below is a small review of what we learned and experienced.

Please note:
the following is just that, what we learned and experienced. Not necessarily what anyone believes should be done. The first part of the morning was spent watching scrimmages that P participated in.
She kicked ass by getting out there and representing the TEAM. We were able to observe other TEAMs, their tactics, and skills. It was easy to see who was a TEAM player and who played for themselves. This made us realize how important it is for everyone to play as a TEAM, watch each other's back, and help each other improve. It's not how well you skate; it's how well your TEAM skates and how well you skate with your TEAM.
To close the conference there was a scrimmage between random players chosen out of a hat. Sure enough, P was picked to kick ass! She had some good hits and took a good fall. The bout was great to watch as the crowd grew larger to watch the main event; Dominion vs. Dairy Land. It was a fast paced, hard hitting bout that everyone could learn from.

Bi Laws and Standards:
Multiple TEAMs stressed that we should start writing our bi laws now (attendance, expectations, etc...). We can change and add policies as we go, but to start and have one to hand out to fresh meat is always good. Once we feel comfortable with one, we can then review it on a yearly basis.
One TEAM said new policies would start at the beginning of the month to make it easier on everyone. We want to bring fresh meet to the TEAM; HOWEVER, providing standards will eliminate people who aren't as serious as we need them to be. People can get burned out very easily. If we work on the structure now, there is a less chance that will happen in the future. The Bi Laws are intended to go hand in hand with the skills assessment.

Information Packets:
I will be working on the Rock town Rollers packet to provide for sponsors, fresh meet, vendors, etc... This will include our history, our mission statement (which we need to build), bios of each player, our organization structure, etc... To build the Bios, I will hand out a questionnaire for everyone to complete. After the Bio is complete, I will ask you to review for approval. Committees: Every TEAM member must be on at least one committee. A few TEAMs suggested we start with about 4-5 committees with one lead board member and however many support members for each committee. This way everyone is starting out focusing on one committee at a time. The more players we get, the more we can spread. There isn't one person with everything on their shoulders, making all decisions. Meetings are held monthly to discuss needs, wants, progress, etc… Committee examples Dominion used:

Coaching and ReffsAdministration and FinancingMarketing and SponsorshipVolunteer and Fundraising Coaching Workshops:

The Coaching workshop went over practice drills, skill assessments, bouts, TEAM standards, etc. After speaking with Thom, it seemed he was able to learn an overwhelming world of knowledge. As you saw last night, we will be adding a few more drills to work on endurance and try to spice things up for everyone. It is VERY important we still work on skill assessment. TEAMs, who have been together for years, still practice their skill assessments. And yes, they made the comments, "No matter how boring it is or how repetitious it is, you have to do it. The best skaters skate as a TEAM and practice the fundamentals."

Track Set Up:
Thom and Kevin found out a killer way to set up the track that takes ½ the time. Other than the tricks of the trade, they were up to speed with what was being reviewed. Sponsorship Workshop:It was amazing to hear how much donations these TEAMs received; money, time, swag (free stuff). The sponsorship workshop stated when people donate time (like a gym membership) they are still writing that off.
We have to know how much people are claiming to donate and make sure we are donating to counter act for taxes. Dominion said they didn't realize that and had to owe money at the end of the year. Anything we are getting for free/discounted (gear, money, time, etc...) is a write off. We have to keep track of what's going in and going out. If you are not on a committee, it is very important NOT to make any decisions without speaking to the board member.
Being a WFTDA Class A or B TEAM:Class B TEAM is a 6 month "trial period" to assure you are committed to what is needed to be a part of the WFTDA. Once you pass the trial period, you are then a Class A TEAM. This is going to take us a long time to achieve so I hope no one has their dreams set on in now.
This is an extremely long process that requires the following (summary form): Being a know TEAM to other WFTDA TEAMs (practicing, playing, chilling, getting to know the TEAM)3 letters of recommendation from WFTDA TEAMs (the above requirement follows with this letter)Following their code of conductCommitting 2-3 people as a WFTDA committeePlaying at least 2 bouts per season with WFTDA TEAMs in your regionFilling out ALL the paperwork… Needless to say, we need to make sure we keep a good code of conduct with each other and other TEAMs to achieve this goal.
Comments and Contacts:Each TEAM I spoke with is more than willing to share their experience. If you have questions for your committee, look their info up on line and contact them. Everyone has a different situation and is more than willing to help. The PA TEAM has about 40 active skaters plus staff! AND they are about to purchase their own venue!!!! They are for real serious and a kick ass TEAM!

Charlottesville Derby Dames were EXCITED to meet us and are ecstatic to practice with us on September 14th. They do not have a rink to practice at and now only have 7-8 players. Star City Roller Girls in Roanoke, VA are a bit more serious. They practice 3X per week and would love for us to visit and/or practice.
Richmond has opened their arms to whatever help they can provide.

Closing Statement:
Everyone is here for their own reasons but it wouldn't be possible without the TEAM. Everyone is improving greatly in different ways, at different speeds. It's easy to forget you were once slow, clumsy, and lacked skills you have now. We have to stay together as a TEAM, supporting each other and helping each other stride to success. When someone improves, cheer them on. When someone falls, cheer them on. If you have a suggestion, politely share it.
CONSTRUSTIVE criticism is truly needed for everyone at ever skating level. I've heard a few people say this is a great experience and an awesome sport. We can succeed to higher levels as long as we stick together as a TEAM. I'm truly honored to be a part of this TEAM because not everyone has the time or ability to do so.
Everyone is very different in their own ways; let that be known that is what makes a great diverse TEAM. Where one person lacks, the other person is strong. WE as a TEAM can't go any further without each other. Stay strong and stay positive!

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