Cross-training for Derby – 5 Fun Things To Help You Become A Badass

This post has been inspired by the training session we had today, which involved doing Hula Hoop on skates! It was really fun and I was surprisingly not terrible at it. It got me to thinking about fun off-skates activities that would be beneficial for Derby…..

Hoop for Derby!

Hoop for Derby! photo credit: cavale via photopin cc

1. Hula Hooping – On or off skates, this retro fitness craze is not only fun but can be beneficial for the Roller Girl. The traditional hooping around your torso uses pretty much all of your core muscles including abs, back and bum, which is good because in derby we need a lot of core strength! All that wiggling will also be great for flexibility in your hips, helping you to deliver full body checks rather than pointy shoulder stabs. Hooping with your arms and hands will not only build upper body strength but also improve hand-eye coordination. Trust me, you’ll want to catch the hoop thats flying towards you, those things hurt!

Stretchy stretch

Stretchy credit: stephcarter via photopin cc

 2. Yoga – Stretch out all of those muscles that Derby makes tighter than Scrooge and christmas! Calves, hips, groin, IT band – yoga can help you with all of these so you can get lower or finally master sideways skating. It’s tougher than it looks and all those balancing poses are great for core strength and proprioception. Yoga also teaches you deep, relaxing breathing that can help reduce performance anxiety and increase focus – essential!!

You spin me right round baby right round..

You spin me right round baby right round…photo credit: Neeta Lind via photopin cc

3. Spinning –  No, I don’t mean just twirling around in your living room! Spinning is an intense workout done on stationary bikes where you control the resistance with a little dial on the bike. Due to the resistance (and the instructor telling you to go faster, faster, harder, harder!) you work up a real good sweat, improving your cardio fitness and building your leg strength, which I’ve heard comes in quite handy in roller derby…..


Work it at circuits!photo credit: ManOnPHI via photopin cc

4. Circuits/Circuit Training – A class usually consists of several stations each with a different exercise that you must perform for a specified amount of time before moving onto the next. As these classes usually contain a combination of bodyweight, weights, cardio and core exercises with very little rest in-between, they are great for building cardio/muscle endurance and recovery time. Which is great if you are on track every other jam! You will sweat your ass off and get a great total body workout.

Just hanging around…..

Just hanging around… credit: StaciGrove via photopin cc

5. TRX Suspension Training – The TRX is a strong nylon strap type-thingy with handles at the end that allows you to do exercises whilst suspended in the air. You can perform all sorts of exercises such as push ups, pull ups, squats, 1-leg lunges, jumps and more. As the TRX only uses your body and gravity as the resistance, you can switch exercises quickly and you can adapt them to your fitness level. It’s great for building stability and core strength as you have to use your entire body to control where the straps go! Balance, strength and stability are all essential for the ol’ Derbz.

What other fun off-skates activities do you do that are beneficial for Derby? Let me know!



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