Be prepared for derby stance. It burns, it burns, it burns!

My derby journey began with MARD this past November. I came to recruit night and watched a practice before joining. I had reservations. Coming in brand new to the sport, and having not skated in many years, I wasn’t sure if I could hack it. While I am naturally thin, I also knew that I was out of shape. 

I have never enjoyed exercising for the sake of exercise. I get no pleasure from going for a run or hitting the gym. What I was looking for was an activity that would help me get stronger, but that was also fun.

Enter the ladies of MARD and the sport of Roller Derby. Jen groupDerby is the first team sport that I have ever felt was really team driven. All the ladies (and gents) have been nothing but encouraging. Every league member offers tips, tricks and just overall support. I have never been put down by anyone at derby. Knocked down perhaps- but not put down. Ever. (See the first rule of roller derby.)

Respect and obey the first rule of roller derby and your derby league will become your derby family. My derby league is my derby family.

Since November I have told anyone who will listen about this wonderful new world of derby that I have joined and the question I am asked most often is, “But aren’t you scared?”

All I can say to that is that I’m scared of only two things in life; losing one of my children and my bank balance. Truly that’s about it.  But… derby players can be intimidating.

Scientists, graphic designers, electricians, school teachers, mothers- people transform at the rink. Much like Peter Parker or Bruce Wayne, the league becomes empowered as the derby gear gets strapped on. Everyone grows about a foot instantly and resemble linebackers all geared up. Many have piercings and tattoos and “don’t mess with me attitudes.” 

But you know what- it’s liberating to let go of all the day to day stuff, to show a little aggression and assertiveness.  My advice to those who are intimated is to tell Dr. Jekyll to step aside and let Mr. Hyde come out to play.

The second question I am asked as a newer skater is always, “doesn’t it hurt?”

Yes it does and as a matter of fact, I got my very first derby bruise last week! But the surprising thing about it is, it also feels really good. I do it twice a week, every week, for fun.

Intimidation and fear of pain factors aside, as someone who grew up skating I figured myself to be a fairly decent skater who would catch on quickly and easily- really how different could derby skating vary from rink skating?

Quite a bit actually. (Be prepared for derby stance. It burns, it burns, it burns!)

While at first I found the learning curve frustrating I quickly realized that it was OK that I had a lot to learn. Watching the scrimmages for myself I realize that I really need to nail the basics before I am ready to bout. I’m no longer in a super hurry to level up and I would say the same to anyone else joining derby or new to the sport. 

Take your time and get it right. Jen

Derby skating is about applying basic roller skating skills with the blocking and checking of football players, the leaping and twirling of dancers, and the intelligence and maneuvering of a chess player- in 2 minutes or less. To be good at any of these things, it takes practice, patience and time.

I push myself every week whether I am planking, doing hip checks, skating in a pack, practicing turning toe stops or jumps. I have been skating a few months and have so much I still need to work on. Every week I sweat and stink. 

I’m proud of my improvement every week.

It’s hard to explain the satisfaction you’ll feel when you get hip-checked and don’t fall over, or better even, when you land a really good hip check and a league mate rubs her hip and says “that’s the spot!”

Learning and playing roller derby, while a team sport, is a unique journey. Be inspired by your league mates, ask questions, push yourself, fall and get back up. Seriously fall- a lot, you’re going to in a bout anyway so learn how to do it well and how to recover quickly. Don’t be discouraged if it takes you longer to master a skill than someone else, take pride in your individual accomplishments.

Oh- one last thing, take a good look at your bod, your butt specifically when you start, it is going to look even more fantastic in a few weeks! 

XXOO
Jen

 

Does this sound like something you want to try?! We have a meat and greet this weekend at Silver City Sports Complex! Come say hi and get to know the ladies of Mass Attack Roller Derby!

Open Recruiting Night

The first Monday of May MARD will host an open recruiting night, where your roller derby journey begins! You will have an orientation into the league, sign waivers, meet league members and get to see what roller derby practice is all about! Open recruiting will occur every three months, the next recruit class will be in August.

Your first practice will be a mandatory information session. You will get an introduction to MARD and meet its members. You will review our freshmeat program so that when you strap on your skates at practice #2, you will know exactly what is expected of you and what playing roller derby is all about.

We encourage all new recruits to join us at our monthly Meet and Greet at Silver City Sports Complex for public skate session prior to attending new recruit night. Saturday, April 26, from 7:30-10 pm.

Please contact us so that we can send you all the paperwork in advance and have a spot waiting for you at practice!!

Mass Attack is BACK: a Roller Derby Doubleheader

Saturday, April 12 at 4:15 PM
1 Lawton Ave, Taunton, Massachusetts 02780
We’re baaaaaaaaaaack! Join Mass Attack Roller Derby at our home season opener on Saturday April 12th at Silver City Sports Complex.

Up first, Mass Attack All Stars take on Rock Coast Rollers’ Perfect Storm. This is sure to be an exciting bout against the newly appointed WFTDA member league.

In the second bout, our Bloody Bordens face off against Rock Coast’s Breakwater Blackhearts. Lots of new faces on the Bordens’ roster bring fresh talent to the track. You don’t want to miss it!

Doors @ 4:15 pm, first whistle at 4:45 pm. Don’t be late!

Kids 12 & under get in FREE.

Get your tickets HERE

Home Plate Bay Street Grill, at 1094 Bay St Taunton MA is where you’ll find MARD’s after party!!! See you there!

Fresh Meat? No, Fresh Start!

Welcome to the brand new MARD Fresh Meat Blog! We have several of our current fresh meats (new, not yet scrimmage-eligible skaters) writing about their derby experience. Enjoy!

By XQZ Moi

XQZ Moi at practice in 2011  Photo by Ian Ameche

XQZ Moi at practice in 2011
Photo by Ian Ameche

After only one season, I left derby. I had my reasons and at the time I felt they were valid. Looking back I realize part of it was me getting in my own way. With a lot of thought and encouragement from both league mates I stayed in contact with, and a few special non-derby people in my life, I decided to give it another try. I loved derby the first time around and didn’t want to give up on something I love!

            Coming back to MARD after a three year hiatus, it feels like a COMPLETELY different experience. A lot has changed in my time away, with the game and the league, all for the better. I was a little nervous to come back but…the warm welcome I received the night of fresh meat orientation let me know I had made the right decision. In a world where everyone is trying to “find” themselves, the moment I walked through those familiar rink doors, I knew I was back where I belonged! And so my derby journey begins…again.

 

XQZ Moi bouting in 2011! Photo by Ian Ameche

XQZ Moi bouting in 2011!
Photo by Ian Ameche

Joining the fresh meat class, I did have an advantage. I have skated and bouted previously. I knew what to expect. If you’re like me, coming in to a new experience can be intimidating, especially derby! Not knowing anyone, not knowing where to go, what to do. You know, like wondering why your jaw hurts during and for three days after practice, only to find out, if you had just read the directions that came with your mouth guard, you would have known you needed to mold it to actually fit your mouth! Or not knowing you put your helmet on backwards. Having some of these experiences makes me remember what it’s like to be new. I enjoy being with these women and sharing in their new journey. I DON’T think I’m better than them. I think about ENCOURAGING them! Passing along little tips that helped me, like making sure to loosen your trucks if you want to be able to slalom or have an easier time with plow stops. Also, if you want to get the most out of your wheels, make sure to rotate them!

Starting fresh I know there are skills I didn’t learn the first time around. My advice to any one coming in to derby for the first time:

1. Don’t be in a rush to level up. Yeah, there may be skaters that move on before you. So what? Take this time to really master the basics! They will only make you a better skater later on.

2. You can always get lower. We all know derby stance is a b*tch! Back aching, quads burning…Squat down another inch.

3. No one is ever going to judge you as harshly as you judge yourself! Derby is a “judgment free zone”. We build each other up. Not knock each other down…eh…well unless you’re on the track, LOL. Which brings me to…

4. Don’t be afraid or embarrassed to fall! We all fall down, it’s part of derby. The most important part is that you don’t give up but get back up! My favorite quote comes from a poem about life. But I think it relates to derby as well:

“…Life will hit you…HARD…in the face…wait for you to get back up, just so it can kick you in the stomach. But…getting the wind knocked out of you is the only way to remind your lungs just how much they like the taste of air…” – Sara Kay

PLEASE don’t give up! You have an entire league of amazing women behind you, who have all been where you are. Every one of them is cheering you on!

5. Spend time with your league mates off the track. Derby is an amazing family. You will create some really strong bonds that will last a lifetime. Not to mention they’re probably the only ones who won’t get sick of talking about derby with you! And who knows…you may just find yourself a derby wife or two!

So….here is to our derby journey! Let’s Roll!

Hits & Bruises,

*XQZ MOI

 

2nd Annual Roller Disco!

Join MARD for our 2nd Annual Roller Disco on Saturday, May 3, 2014, 5:00 PM until 7:00 PM!

Every Candid Moment Photography

Every Candid Moment Photography

This year think leg warmers, jelly bracelets, neon leggings, Valley Girl, Fast Times at Ridgemont High, The Go-Go’s, Run DMC, Rubik’s Cube, PAC-Man, boom boxes, ADIDAS Shell Toes, and rainbows forever.

For $10, you get two hours of skating to amazing music, raffles, prizes, photos and more!

You do NOT want to miss this fundraiser!
Prizes awarded for:
* Most Excellent Outfit
* Totally Rad Outside League (most in attendance)

Invite your friends and start planning your outfit!

*this fundraiser is an all ages event. $10 per person.

MINION MAYHEM! A despicably diabolical derby doubleheader!

The kids of Mass Attack Roller Derby are lovingly called “minions”. In celebration of our minions, ALL kids 13 & under get in FREE!!! We’ll unveil some awesome kid-friendly activities as bout day approaches!

8/17/13 is our LAST HOME BOUT OF THE 2013 SEASON, & it will be despicably diabolical…

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“Warriors, come out and plaaay!”
For the first time EVER, the Mass Attack All Stars take on the Warriors of Worcester Roller Derby.

Stay tuned for our 2nd bout, when Bloody Bordens battle the Beat City Bed Rockers from Hartford Area Roller Derby.

DETAILS:
Date: Saturday, August 17, 2013

Address: Silver City Sports Complex, 1 Lawton Ave Taunton MA 02780

Time: Doors Open at 4:15, First Whistle at 4:30PM

Tickets: $10 through Brown Paper Tickets, $12 at the door, Kids 13 and under get in for free!

By tickets through Brown Paper Tickets: http://mardminions.bpt.me/

Bout day & after party music brought to you by the one & only DJ nAthAn! www.facebook.com/djnAthAn909

Afterparty at Pub 76- 76 Weir St Taunton, MA 02780
CASH ONLY…ATM on site. Its about a mile from the venue.


Ladies First Double Header

JULY_FINAL_POSTER-01

This double header is NOT TO BE MISSED!!!

First, the ladies: Mass Attack All Stars Vs. Elm City Derby Damez!!! It’s a rematch that’s sure to keep you on the edge of your seat!

Next, the gentlemen: Mass Maelstrom’s B team Vs. Casco Bay Gentlemen! Be ready for a fast-paced, intense bout!

DETAILS:
Date: Saturday, July 20, 2013

Time: Doors Open at 4:15, First Whistle at 4:30PM

Address: Silver City Sports Complex, 1 Lawton Ave Taunton MA 02780

Tickets: $10 through Brown Paper Tickets, $12 at the door, Kids 10 and under get in for free!

Buy tickets through Brown Paper Tickets: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/413239

Afterparty at Pub 76: 76 Weir St Taunton, MA 02780
CASH ONLY…ATM on site. Its about a mile from the venue.

 

MARD DOUBLE HEADER! JUNE 22!

MARD v UVV

Its another Double-Header with MARD! The Mass Attack All Stars are bouting the Upper Valley Vixens and the Mass Attack Bloody Bordens (our all new B-team) are facing PVRD’s Quabbin Missile Crisis!

First bout, the Mass Attack All Stars take on the Upper Valley Vixens!

Second bout, MARD’s all new B-team, the Bloody Bordens face off with the Quabbin Missile Crisis!

DETAILS:
Date: Saturday, June 22nd

Time: Doors Open at 4:15, First Whistle at 5PM

Tickets: $10 through Brown Paper Tickets, $12 at the door, Kids 10 and under get in for free!

Buy tickets through Brown Paper Tickets: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/389100

Afterparty at Pub 76- 76 Weir St Taunton, MA 02780 – CASH ONLY…ATM on site. Its about a mile from the venue.

Address: Silver City Sports, 1 Lawton Ave Taunton MA 02780

MARD Disco Skate Party!

Disco skate with the Mardettes!

Mass Attack Roller Derby presents a 70′s – 80′s theme skate party with some modern music thrown in. Admission is $10.00 for everyone whether you are skating or not. All proceeds benefit the league. Come dressed in your 70s and 80s best!

Sunday, June 2
5:00-7:00pm

Silver City Sports Complex
1 Lawton Avenue
Taunton, MA 02780

50/50 and prizes will be raffled off.

Costume Contest- Come in your 70s & 80s costumes! The winner will get a pair of tickets to our June 22nd bout!

Tickets will be sold at the door!

 

 

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