The Garden State Rollergirls, New Jersey's premiere all-female roller derby league, boasts a roster of over 40 skaters during their seventh season. Equipped with four-wheeled skates, the athletes crush competition during bouts of two 30-minute halves. While designated jammers—typically the fastest skaters—attempt to lap opposing rollers, blockers use a lethal combination of shoulder and hip checks.
For more than 20 years, Igor Dyachenko has trained with top coaches around the world and won numerous awards in international competitions. As a former world champion, certified instructor, and founder of D-Dojo Karate, he calls upon those years of experience to fuse classical Japanese karate techniques with modern science, including knowledge culled from biophysics, biomechanics, and reruns of The Bionic Woman. The dojo is a member of the World Karate Federation (WKF) and an official branch of the Shotokan Karate-do International Federation (SKIF), headed by Hirokazu Kanazawa. Dyachenko trained with Kanazawa, a 10th-degree black belt who studied with the creator of Shotokan karate.
Dyachenko and his team strive to train students quickly with basic karate techniques known as kihon, kata, and kumite exercises. Children practice exercises through running, jumping, and playing, in order to help develop physical strength, agility, and mental toughness. Dyachenko also used his karate skills and sense of humor to help commemorate the 20th anniversary of Ronald Reagan's "Tear Down This Wall" speech on The Colbert Report.
John González, founder of New Amsterdam Fencing Academy, brings his skills as a nationally ranked athlete to the piste, where he works with enthusiastic instructors to demonstrate European fencing techniques. He and the coaching corps teach foil, épée, and saber disciplines during classes that take advantage of the group's collective energy. They lead students through progressive learning approaches—group footwork and conditioning, individual lessons, and bouting sessions— in hopes of preparing students for traditional competitions and unconventional kebab parties.
Kangoo Nation is a grass roots fitness movement of people from all walks of life who own, use, love, and want to try Kangoo Jumps aka Kangoos. Based in NYC its for people who are tired and bored of treadmills, elliptical, and other tedious forms of cardio and who want to have fun while they workout!
During water breaks when young ballers are relacing their high-tops on the edges of the gym, the coaching staff at Basketball Stars of NY might take a break to goof around on the court; but, for them—former NCAA Division I athletes who’ve spent time in professional leagues throughout the world—goofing around translates to throwing down a vicious tomahawk dunk, effortlessly splashing three-balls through the rim from behind the arc or subtly raising the rims during practice so players think that they're shrinking. No matter the act, these feats typically snag boys' and girls' attention during their private lessons, camps, or weekend programs or clinics. Progamming director and coach David Brown says the coaches' athletic prowess and physicality helps players focus, drawing a clear path between the hard work of practice drills to the payoff of a power dunk. In small groups split by age, skill, and position, coaches instill the value of fundamentals such as ball handling and rebounding. They also break the bad habits of youth, steering players away from the tendency to shoot nothing but threes, dribble with their head down, and fade away on simple 10-foot jumpers.