Monday, September 19, 2011

Guest blogging: Bitches Bruze


Bitches Bruze #802

A.D.D.'s next gues blogger is Bitches Bruze of Pioneer Valley Roller Derby, the first league in the U.S.A. to have both a women's and a men's team.  Her bout of guest blogging will be "Back to Basics with Bitches - drills for bringing your team together through basic skating and position skills."

For Bitches Bruze, skating became a part of her life as a little girl and on up through the sneaker skates of the 1980s. In 1985 she was awarded the University of Florida Choir’s award for “Soprano on Wheels” a result of roller skating to every class on campus, and right up to her chair as first soprano three times a week. She traded in those sneaker skates for roller blades in 1990 and, finding inlines to have no soul, hung up her wheels. Fifteen years later, looking for a team sport to stay in shape, she found roller derby through a Wikipedia search and her derby career has been filled with many exciting twists and turns.
 
“I’ve never been your traditional athlete,” says Bitches. “I have a deformity in my right knee which makes speed in skating or running difficult. But I have a lot of strength in my legs and upper body. In high school, I stuck with things like playing goalie on the varsity field hockey team, long jump, triple jump, discus, and shot put. I was also into drama club, writing, and the only freshman on the math league. Really, my derby career reflects that same kind of all around, involved in everything kind of skater.”
 
For Bitches, the complexity of a sport that involves simultaneous offense and defense ignites her love of game and strategy. “This sport really requires amazing all-around athleticism and a sharp, observant mind. For all intents and purposes, roller derby can be classified as a ‘war game’ – and it’s full contact and on wheels.”
 
In order to better learn and understand the game, Bitches began early in her career getting involved with every aspect of the game. Since she started in the summer of 2007, she has filled every single role in a bout – from skater, head referee, videographer, announcer and every NSO position (except score keeper). She’s worked more than 150 bouts and been on roster for more than 50 bouts. “There isn’t an aspect of working a bout, even outside white board, that doesn’t give a skater a new, more involved, look at the game.”
 
Outside derby, Bitches teaches computer programming and applications at the Community College of Vermont in Bennington, Vermont. “I love teaching. I’ve done so many things in my life and to bring ideas and skills to people is the most rewarding job I’ve ever had.” For fun, Bitches and her husband (who is also now her derby wife), Will Jettison (of the Dirty Dozen) like sailing and pioneering. When they aren’t traveling to some bout somewhere, you’ll either find the two of them on a lake with sails up, or cutting down trees and milling them into posts and beams for their house.
 
Bitches is available for guest coaching and specializes in bringing drills and strategy to teams and leagues in their second year of derby who are looking for cohesion and that next level of play which gets into the complexities of flat track derby. You can learn more about Bitches’ approach on her blog http://promiseofderby.com/ or visiting her on Facebook http://facebook.com/bbruze802.
 
Welcome Bitches Bruze!
 

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