One of the first faces our new members see is also one of the loveliest people we have on our team. Bambi is warm and welcoming, hardworking and generous of her time. We couldn’t ask for a better Fresh Meat Coordinator! Congratulations to Bambi Dextrous, our October WARDian of the Month.
How did you get into derby?
I was at a pub about 10 years ago and the local derby league was there, promoting their league and recruiting for Fresh meat. At the time I remember thinking “I wish I was brave enough to go and talk to them”. After having my second baby I happen to be in the same mothers group as a girl who played and she raved about it. 10 years after first learning that Roller Derby was a ‘thing’ and I finally felt brave enough sign up.
What do you get out of derby?
Besides the fitness, the fun, and the friendships? Well, for a few hours twice a week I get to be something more than ‘just a mum’. I get to be Bambi! I get to skate my butt off, I get to hit people, and I get to wear fishnets and booty shorts. I’m also very privileged to learn from the most talented, inspiring and supportive bunch of people I’ve ever met. It’s all very empowering.
What has been the highlight of your skating career so far?
I have a couple. The first is passing my Level 3 assessment. That was a really grueling couple of hours and there were many times throughout the session when I didn’t think id make it through. But I did!
The second is actually making it through my first ever team training session and not dying. I was really nervous beforehand, as I’d never trained with the bouting skaters before. At the start i felt like I sucked at everything. I felt so completely out of place, and like I didn’t belong there. I was about to take off my skates and go home when Tiny Dancer grabbed me for the next round of drills. We did them together and apparently I felt like i actually did pretty well. She put me on my ass a couple of time but I got up, asked her to show me how to protect myself better and it didn’t happen again. Just making it through that training session made me feel amazing. And I know that Ill improve even more every time i show up and skate.
Most embarrassing moment?
I don’t really have anything I’m super embarrassed about just yet. I do say sorry a lot, especially after I hit someone and they fall over. I need to stop that, there’s no ‘sorry’ in derby.
Do you have any training tips?
Turn up. Every time. Do every drill to the absolute best of your ability and ask lots of questions. If you aren’t getting something, ask one of the coaches to show you another way and keep doing it till you get it. Showing up is the only way to get better.
What are your derby aspirations?
I want to keep learning. I don’t think I could ever know everything there is to know about this sport. I want to make it onto a team and to be considered a valuable and effective teammate. I want to walk away from every training session better than I was before.
Who would you nominate as next WARDian of the Month?
Boulder Over. She works so hard organizing some really fantastic merchandise for our league but as a skater she’s a bit of an inspiration to me. I remember her first Fresh Meat training session and she wasn’t confident even standing up in skates, let alone rolling in them. But she’s put in the work and turning up week after week and now she’s as steady as a rock and skates her butt off.
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