Most Fascinating People K-Lethal by Dave Wood

Published on January 8th, 2014 | by Betty Schnockered

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K-Lethal by Dave Wood

Cincinnati’s Deadliest Weapon: K-Lethal

I’m probably not the only one who was stuck at work and on September 6 and saw this come across their newsfeed, “That was quite the opening bout! 9 jams IN A ROW WITH THE STAR for K-Lethal at the end gives Cinci a comeback win, 217-214. Wow.” Wow is right. After 9 jams, K had helped her team get past their first bout in the Division 1 playoffs in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

I had a billion questions about what went down. Was this their plan? What does she do to cross train? What was her pack doing? So when the topic of Fascinating Derby People came up, K. Lethal leapt to mind. Once I got a hold of her, I got my questions answered and then some.

DL: Do you usually jam for multiple jams in a row?
KL: Usually, in past seasons we start out with a two-jammer rotation with a relief. It doesn’t take long for our rotation to get messed up though. So I do end up jamming more than one consecutively. Personally, I prefer it.

K-Lethal by Dave Wood

K-Lethal jams against Bleeding Heartland in Fort Wayne. Photo: Dave Wood.

DL: Was it always the plan for you to jam 9 times in a row in your bout against Bleeding Heartland? Or were you just going with what was working that day?
KL: That was absolutely not a plan. Haha. I’m a clutch player and do really well in that position. I play better under pressure and adversity. It was just what happened. It seemed the only thing that was effective. And I don’t ever quit.

DL: Of course for you to be successful, your blockers must have been working hard. What were they doing that helped you succeed during those jams?
KL: I am lucky to have been skating with most of my blockers for a really long time. It truly helps to know your teammates’ habits. I find it easy to follow blocks and communicate via body language. I rely heavily on my blockers during slow derby, so yes, they work very hard.

DL: You’re known for being calm and collected, how do you keep your cool out there? Does being a preschool teacher help you keep your cool? I know a lot of teachers and they’re pretty unflappable.
KL: I think my patience with preschoolers is pretty separate from my skating. I pretty much have a totally different persona when I’m skating, I’m strong, I want to win and I strive to never show weakness. Derby is as much a mental sport as it is physical. And as soon as I see you breathing heavy, looking gassed or anything other than calm, I know it’s game on and it motivates me even more. I will never give that to my opponent if I can help it.

DL: What do you do to prepare for a bout?
KL: I’m kind of bad about bout prep and I plan to change that this season. In the past I have slacked on diet and sleep the night prior more than I should. Bout day ritual is always the same. Sleep in. Get up. Blast gangsta rap all day. Drink lots of coffee and eat lots of chocolate and candy. Do my nails.

DL: What do you do for cross-training that gives you such crazy endurance?
KL: I have always been a jammer from day one so at practice I always get lots of endurance jamming. I always try to push myself during sprints and endurance drills. Outside of practices I train at the Dirty Gym in Dayton. They specialize in strategic athletic training through weightlifting, power lifting, bodybuilding, and crossfit. I have recently started doing some jiujitsu jitsu as well.

DL: Any specific goals or events that you are excited about in 2014?
KL: I will skate better than I ever have, get better control on my penalty specific problems, and work towards bettering myself athletically as a whole.

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