Welcoming the new Fresh Meat – January 2017

fresh meat jan 2017

Last week we welcomed our new skaters as they arrived for their first Fresh Meat session. We did our best not to terrify them, but asking them a ton of questions as they kitted up probably didn’t help.

Why Fresh Meat?

From getting fit, meeting new people, or just wanting to learn a new skill, people sign up to Fresh Meat for all sorts of reasons…

It’s Naomi’s second time at Fresh Meat with us, as a work commitment meant she couldn’t complete the last course, so she was really keen to build on the skills she learnt previously, and get the hang of those tricky plough stops.

Elaine had never skated at all – not even as a child – so her first goal was staying upright. (Spoiler alert – she totally nailed it!) Like a lot of us who are new to skating, she also wants to get fitter, and what better way than throwing yourself around on roller skates?

Mel found out about the course by seeing an advert in the town centre, and hadn’t skated since she was seven, but always wanted to take it up again. Learning a new skill and getting active was her main aim.

A couple of our Freshies were “gently encouraged” to sign up to the course by other Belles, and had already spent some time practicing at RollerCity. Maggie, was super excited to master crossovers, and Rod really wanted to get confident skating backwards, then eventually “going fast and skidding around”. We can’t wait for that either, Rod!

Fresh Meat gear, almost ready to get started!

Time to get rolling!

Coaches Cole and Slam!Be guided our nervous Freshies through a quick off-skates warm-up, followed by a kit check to make sure there were no wobbly toe-stops or missing mouth-guards (Safety is sexy!)

fresh meat 2017 kit check
Slam!Be doing the all-important kit check.

The first skill to master was standing up with eight wheels strapped to their feet, which everyone managed with little trouble. After a demonstration of Derby Stance and Sticky Skating, the Freshies got on track and went for it – Thighs burned and a few bums hit the floor, but that’s all part of the derby fun, right?!

Next up were everyone’s favourite: Plough stops!

Cole demonstrating a plough stop

Even experienced skaters struggle with these, so we were so happy to see our beginners giving it their all. Of course, putting another skater in the way to force them to either stop or crash really helps!

Skated it or hated it?!

After the session, it was time to see how the newest recruits found it and whether or not we had scared them off! Here’s what a few of them said:

“It was fantastic! The coaches were really good and helpful. They were always asking if we were okay and helping with our technique.”

“It was amazing and terrifying but also brilliant, because I didn’t fall over the whole session. I can’t wait to come back next week to learn even more!”

“Loved it! It was really, really fun. It felt unnatural at first, but I definitely progressed from the start to end. Everyone was really nice and helpful, and the coaches took the time to notice why we were struggling and helped everyone individually.”

“I am really worn out, but it was so good! I didn’t realise how bad I was! It is a totally different surface compared to skating out on the street, but I’m really looking forward to the rest of the sessions.”

fresh meat 2017
The new Fresh Meat gang.

Looks like they’ll be back for more! We’ll catch up with them half way through to see what else they’ve learned, so stay tuned!

If you’re interested in signing up for the next Fresh Meat course send an email to recruitment@hertsrd.co.uk to be added to the waiting list.

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