For Fresh Meat, who may not be aware of all the aspects of the WFTDA minimum skills, there is an endurance component called “25 in 5”. Skaters need to skate 25 laps around a (legal) track in 5 minutes. It doesn’t sound like a big deal, but by the time three minutes are up and your lungs are burning and you think you’re almost done, you realize that you STILL have two minutes ahead of you.
The only fun part of the 25 in 5 is when it’s done. You’re exhausted, thirsty and feel like your legs could possibly take a permanent leave of absence but at least you don’t have to keep skating. 🙂 It is probably the worst part of any skater’s min skill evaluation.
When I first tried the 25 in 5, I came pretty close to doing it and have since been able to exceed the requirement regularly. It’s important to note that I DO NOT do it with a lot of grace, despite regular endurance drills at practice. So it’s on me to do it more often, until it ain’t no thing. (Read: not lying on the floor, sputtering and flopping like a fish out of water when I finish.)
If I could give beginner skaters just ONE piece of advice, it would be about this. Bouts are an hour long. Jams can go up to two minutes. It’s doing 25 in 5 over and over again (with some fun hitting and juking). After my first bout, I felt more physically exhausted than I ever have before. Even playing 10 football games at tournaments in a 48-hour period never left me as exhausted as ONE BOUT. Practice it, do it, get good at it, because it makes you a great skater.
To all the CCDD Freshies: The 25 in 5 is boring. We’ll crank the tunes for ya, we’ll shout encouraging words, we’ll understand your groans when we make you do it every week, but you’ll thank us. You may set our houses on fire in the interim…but when you’ve skated your first bout, you’ll quietly thank the 25 in 5. (And offer to replace my coffee maker, which burned when you set my house on fire.)