Over the next few weeks, hundreds of LGBT part-time sports enthusiasts will be hitting the fields, courts, paths, mats and pools. Not long after, dozens will be hitting the ice packs, hot tubs and Icy Hot because of sore muscles, sprains, bumps and bruises. And a few others may be hitting the ER, like I did a couple weeks ago.
Sports injuries are sometimes about the unforeseen — being blindsided by a blitz, being bonked by a bat or even tagged by a tennis ball. But many times injuries are preventable by stretching, warming up, wearing the proper protective gear and paying attention to the activity in which you are engaged. My injury was purely my fault for not paying close attention to the path ahead while biking and looking for a group of people in the park to get a photo for work.
As we move further into good weather, take a few minutes each time you go out for an activity to conduct an inventory of what you should be doing to preclude a sports-related injury. It is worth your time. And speaking for myself, it’s also worth the time you get to be outside having fun, getting exercise and that natural vitamin D instead of spending six hours of gorgeous weather in an emergency room.
Back on track
Philly Rollergirls are revved up for another battle April 13 at the Class of 1923 Arena, 3130 Walnut St. Doors open at 5 p.m. and the first bout starts at 6 p.m. Up first is Independence Dolls vs. Suburban Brawl from Yonkers, N.Y., and then the Syracuse Assault City Roller Derby takes on Philly Block Party.
It’s safe to say most of you have never been to a women’s flat-track roller derby. There’s a beer garden and cheap snacks to keep your energy up (if you need more than the excitement on the track), and fans can get close enough to hear the bone-crushing hits amid the whir of wheels.
My first thought was, Yeah, saw it on TV a couple times—but in person it’s a lot more exciting. And it’s kind of fun watching the ladies release their aggressions in front of a few-hundred people.
Upcoming bouts at the arena are May 11 for a great Mother’s Day show and June 8 right after the Dyke March. For more info, visit phillyrollergirls.com. Oh, did I mention they have a beer garden?
Real men, real football
Thinking about a spring weekend in New York? Join the Gryphons RFC for a rugby round robin that pits them against the Boston Ironsides and the New York Gotham Knights April 20 on Randall’s Island in New York City. After the matches, Gotham Knights invite everyone to join them at local pubs to drink up, sing out and make some new rugger buddies. (Try saying that three times.)
You can get to know the locals before that by attending their monthly First Saturday party starting at 9 p.m. April 6 at Tavern on Camac, 243 S. Camac St. No requirements; just fun, Jell-O shots and a chance to hang out with the boys as they persuade you to donate to their fundraising efforts for the 2014 Bingham Cup games in Sydney, Australia.
Note to current and former players: Gryphons RFC is looking for photos, stories, quotes or other memory-inspired contributions for its 10th-anniversary banquet April 27. See philadelphiagryphons.org for additional information or to make a donation to the Cup fund.
Short stops • Falcons soccer is moving outdoors beginning April 15. Practices are Mondays and Wednesdays 6:15 p.m. until dark, and Saturdays, 10 a.m.-noon, at Edgley Field, Fairmount Park Reservoir and Randolph drives. If you would like to play and are not a member, you are welcome to come out to any pickup game, regardless of your ability. You can practice with the club twice before being asked to join. • The next roller-skating party to raise money for the Liberty Belle Invitational Bowling Tournament is April 15 at Cherry Hill Skating Center, 664 Deer Road, Cherry Hill, N.J. Admission is $10; bring your own blades or rent them for $3. Hit the link on the Belles’ webpage for directions and other info: philagayskating.com. • Another anniversary year starts April 21 in Fairmount Park. City of Brotherly Love Softball League has its opening-day ceremonial pitch by Councilman Jim Kenney at 1:15 p.m. followed immediately by an Old Timers game. The Philadelphia Freedom Band will play the National Anthem with Carol Hilt doing the lyric honors. There will be the usual hot dogs, sodas, pretzels and other ballpark goodies available to round out the festivities.
Countdown to Gay Games 9: 490 days. For all your fun and games indoors or out, email [email protected].