Tuesday, 21 February 2012
OK a warning, if you are sick of me talking about roller skating stop reading now! This is probably the last one for a while but honestly if you are over it feel free to close your browser or hit that little 'x' :)
I'm still loving my skates. I have, as I promised myself I would, put them on and had a skate everyday (even if it turned out to only be for five minutes). But honestly I have done as much as I can as far as updating my skills within the confines of my street and in the house. After quite an ouchy fall on the weekend (where my skill level met the bad road surface in a match to the death) I started wanting to find other places to try them out. I needed somewhere flat(ish), I needed somewhere larger and mostly I needed somewhere where I didn't feel the eyes of non skating people watching and judging if/when I fall over.
After my fall I posted a photo of my grazed and bruised arm on facebook and mentioned my want of a better place to skate. A friend of mine who is an avid skater and derby girl posted a link to 'RollerFit' classes that were just a suburb away.
Now I'm a homebody, often if things are too far away or seem too challenging I either blatantly say I just don't want to do it, or I find a really good excuse why I can't go. But this time I was determined. I mean why did I get these skates if not to challenge myself! Sure I thought by challenging myself I meant overcoming my fear of skating (well actually my fear of falling over) but obviously my fear of both leaving my comfort zone and doing something like this 'on my own' was part of the process as well.
So today I rocked into the class with my skates over my shoulder. There were about 20 women for the beginners class. At least 7 of them were around my age, with the rest being quite a bit younger. The instructor was a fair bit younger as well and although she obviously knew her stuff she wasn't at all what I expected. Kind of a bit terse and not particularly welcoming or cheery, but now that I think of it she was very similar to almost all of the aerobic instructors I've worked out with (not that that is a huge list :)
We put on our skates and started skating around to warm up. The first thing that I noticed was that the ground (which is a sort of rubber) was very different to skate on. I needed more force to get any speed up and the fact that my wheels have some tread on them made it even harder to maneuver. But after a few laps I was beginning to get more comfortable.
We were then split into two groups, super beginners (the ones who were still learning how to stay upright and move forward) and the regular beginners who were looking to become more confident and work on other skills. And then with music pumping we started with a variety of different moves;
- Scissor skating, laps up and down the court without lifting our feet. It was exhausting and extra hard with the tread on my wheels. So by the time the first exercise was complete I was as red as a beetroot and starting to wonder what I had gotten myself into.
- Laying on our backs, skates on, and bicycling with our legs in the air. I laughed and said if I had wanted to bicycle I would have bought a bike ... the upside of my smart arse comment was that a few of the women started talking a bit and I finally felt myself relax.
- Crossovers (basically turning by stepping one foot across the other). I was excited to finally be in a place where I could practice this again as it was one of the things I was having trouble doing on the gravel.
- Balancing on one foot while moving. Believe it or not I found it easier to do it moving than I did standing still, but still didn't manage to make the full five seconds in one glide.
- Squatting while moving, which after a bit of practice culminated in us all doing roller limbo under a pool noodle. I made it through 4 of 5 stages so felt pretty impressed with myself.
For the last 10 minutes we practiced what we had learnt and spent a bit of time going over the basics for backward skating. For the record I can scissor backwards but full skating backwards seems ... complexed (although it is almost the exact reverse of forward skating this was not something my brain grasped well)
So that was it. And I had a blast, I almost can't wait to go again next week. I have also already started trying to source some new wheels ... I'm thinking green, maybe with purple stoppers ... if possible :)
Watching - Signs with Jack. It was kind of hilarious how such an unscary movie seemed so scary to Jack because of the creepy soundtrack ... I may have scared him for life.
Listening - Trying to spend a bit more time listening to the radio and keep up with some new music.
Reading - Need to pick a new book tonight
State of mind - Skating super star :)