I was recruited by Michelle Ng and Without Limits to write about my experiences in my final season of College Ultimate. 2011 has many possibilities...let's see how they pan out. E-mail me (robyn-fennig@uiowa.edu)

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Weaknesses.

I've been doing lots and lots of thinking about weaknesses...and what I can do to minimize them. I mean, any time you let your opponent catch you dwelling on a play, or making mistakes...they take advantage of it. I mean, that's what I try to do, and feel a good, smart opponent will do the same if given the opportunity.

Here's two thoughts.

1) Hanging your head.
After a work out last week, I watched a certain college open team that my boyfriend happens to play on practicing. I sat and stretched my ridic sore legs and watched them scrimmage. It irked me to no end to watch the D line hang their heads after the O line made some plays and scored. I mean, yeah, the lack of execution happens. Sometimes your opponent outplays you. Sometimes you're the one who makes the mistakes. Sometimes you don't get to touch the disc to make an impact. It doesn't matter what your reason for doing it, the minute you hang your head and slowly walk back to the line, is the minute you outwardly admit defeat to your opponent. Don't give your opponent that. I don't care if at the end of practice they are your teammate or not, or if it's the championship game of nationals. You jog back to the line, head held high, put your foot on the line, and raise your hand in the air for the pull like it didn't affect you. It doesn't mean you don't think about the execution or correcting your mistake. By hanging your head, you mentally take yourself out of the next point before it begins...don't cede victory before given the opportunity to win.
*See Zip's Tips, April 29, 2002

I make it a personal point to try to jog back to the line after being scored on. It gives me time to think, size up the competition on the line across from me, and analyze the situation. While your team is celebrating, I'm spending my time pin pointing your weaknesses and creating good match ups. Why not? I get my 90 seconds to think, process, and move on between points...I may as well make the most of it. You're celebrating, pumping up your teammates. I'm strategizing and trying to pump up mine. Those longer reflections I need to take, typically occur between games or at half. I took the Iowa State loss from conference pretty rough. I had a long car ride to think. I had a whole night to think. I mean, I lost some sleep over it. But come Monday, it's a new day. I'm throwing, running, and pushing myself to make sure I'm ready to go come Regionals (in two weeks). It's my goal to throw more than my opponent every day and work harder than my opponent. I can't change what happens in the past, but I can control my future. I won't spend it hanging my head.

2) Working back from an injury.
Alyx throwing her signature flick, spring 2010.
I have seen one of the co-captains of Saucy make her debut again. Alyx Averkamp is now known as "boot-free girl." She did just updated the interwebs with her status of what it felt like to sit on the sidelines since winter break and her tragic leg-break. I'm a little sad she beat me to the punch. My mini Boston vacation to the American Planning Association national conference forced me to fall behind in blog reading. I have been lucky enough to never sit on the sidelines during the season. My knee surgery could not have come at a more opportune time, if there is ever one for knee surgery. I've watched her work slowly at first, then quickly, to getting back on the field...never losing her leadership presence on our team. I honestly think that she has gained a lot of perspective from the sidelines and watching our team develop. She took the field again for the first time since fall this weekend in the Western North Central with great decisions and great executions. Not saying she didn't do this in the fall, but I can tell that she's used the past few months to her advantage. I have spent a lot of time thinking about her this season and sending her good vibes/thoughts. I looked forward to having her back.

Here's the Robyn-approved update on Alyx. She's back. And she's looking in fine form. Don't her post in the Saucy blog fool you into thinking she's not. I won't lie, I'm impressed with those flick breaks.

When you come back from an injury, you don't dare let your opponent see what leg you're favoring or that your wrist still hurts. You ice after the game, you do your physical therapy, complain to your friends and teammates....but it's all business during game/tourney time. Watch her. You won't see her miss a beat.

Enough thoughts for now. I have an event to plan.
Robyn

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