As a league we are constantly growing, and therefore as such we need to change and adapt to our new circumstances.
For the past 3 years we have been flooded with fresh meat that have wanted to play roller derby in Berlin and beyond. In 2011 we offered four 3-month newbie courses a year. Every person who successfully passed their minimum skills test was allowed to participate in league training and scrimmage with the veteran players.
While the A & B-Team players progressed, the level of play of the newbies leaving the fresh meat course was more or less the same. Soon we realized that the original 3-months were not enough to train skaters to an appropriate level. Following this, the newbie course expanded to 4 months and then to 6 months. Recently we also introduced an 4-month intermediate training course to close the gap between the newbies and the veterans.
In order to balance the number of players in the league, two newbie courses a year was deemed a reasonable amount, when considering the flux of current players on leave, those returning after leave. 60 skaters are a fair number to accommodate with our hall time. What we want to achieve, is to improve the skill level of the newest players within the resources we have to offer.
This is why we have decided to accept only the best newbies every 6 months.
What does ‘the best’ mean? Just as we evaluate our veteran skaters, we will evaluate all those who apply for the newbie course. We will test the skating skills in terms of agility, speed, stability, strength, endurance, etc. A good indicator of how good you need to be is the current WFTDA minimum skills test. If you are close to pass it, you can be confident that we will accept you.
The first try-out will be in July 2013 and the list is already closed. If you want to join in January 2014, please contact email@example.com
So what happens if you don’t get accepted into the newbie course?
Don’t worry, we offer a solution for that as well In a few weeks we will launch our recreational league. A Rec. League, in derby jargon, is an opportunity to practice the sport on a casual basis. No attendance lists, no drill instructor, no committee work – just you, your gear, 2 hrs a week.
Our aim for our Rec. League is to offer quad skaters in Berlin the opportunity to discover roller derby in an informal context. It will be a place for skaters of varying levels to practice skating, blocking, wall work and chat about derby.
These are all big and exciting changes that reflect the development of roller derby in Berlin. We are growing, we are getting stronger. The Berlin Bombshells want to give women who exhibit the biggest commitment the opportunity to train and play on a competitive European level. At the same time, we also want to see the sport to be accessible to those within the Berlin community and widen its appeal. We hope that these changes will enable us to achieve these goals.