Alternative names: --
Objective: To build up endurance
Typical length of drill: 20 mins
Materials needed: A full track or just four cones to mark the inside track line
Skill level required: None
Description: In this simple, classic roller derby drill your skaters will be alternating between one minute of sprinting and one minute of a skill. On your first whistle, start the timer and start your skaters sprinting. The skaters sprint for one minute, then you blow the whistle to signal to the skaters to change to a skill, and after one minute of a skill you blow the whistle again to signal to the skaters to sprint. This will continue for 20 minutes. Switch up the skill each time; the skaters should have done a total of 10 different skills during this drill, and a total of 10 minutes of sprinting. Skills can include (but are not limited to): Figure eights, small weaves, big weaves, squats on the turns, squats on the straightaways, gliding on one foot on the turns, gliding on one foot on the straightaways, walking on your toe stops, running, big steps, skating backwards, hopping side to side, jumping, scissors, windmills, etc. Make sure that you yell out the skill before the one minute of sprinting is up so that the skaters know what to do on the whistle -- for this drill to be most effective endurance-wise there should be no down-time where the skaters are just hanging out and listening to you explain what they are doing next.
Additional notes: I originally got to do this when skating with New Hampshire Roller Derby but I understand that this is a drill that a lot of leagues like to do (and I'm sorry to say that I don't know who came up with it so I can't give appropriate credit). It's an easy one to run because you don't need any supplies or special skills, but it's also a tough endurance drill for the skaters. I've heard more than one skater ask why it's called the Black Widow and the answer has always been "because it kills you" :)
Please note: To help save your skaters' precious knees and bodies, about half way through this drill you should turn around and skate in the other direction (in fact, I like to place the skate backwards -skill in the very middle so that once the skaters go back to sprinting they can easily just continue in the way that they are facing).