Crash/Thunder Pre-Tryout Clinic

Feeling like you want to get outside and play some ultimate before tryouts start? Want to familiarize yourself with the drills we’ll be running at tryouts without the pressure? Interested in meeting some other players before tryouts begin? Come out to our Pre-Tryouts clinic hosted by Thunder! Here are the details you need!

Time: Thursday April 14, 2016 – 9-11pm
Location: RIM Park Turf Fields
Cost: $10

What’s going to happen:

  • Warm-up
  • Throwing and catching practice to welcome back that pesky wind
  • Drills that will be seen throughout tryouts with explanations and guidance (45’s, huck drill, bail drill, etc.)
  • Scrimmage (if time available)

The goal for this time is learning the drills and getting in some time outside before tryouts begin. No evaluation and no pressure to perform.

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Goals & Process

Last fall when Crash had our end of season meeting we talked about what we want Crash to accomplish over the next few years. The result of this discussion was that we want to qualify for the World Ultimate Club Championships in 2018. Achieving this goal will challenge us and require a lot of work and commitment.

So the question becomes, how do we structure our team to achieve this goal? What do we do differently to make this happen? How do we change our process for 2016 so that we are ready to go in 2017 and 2018?

Tournament Selection

We want to play in the best possible tournaments to challenge the team and prepare ourselves to play in high pressure situations. This season we will attend the Boston Invite in June and USAU fall series after Nationals. This will give us the best opportunity to qualify for more competitive tournaments in 2017. The complete list of tournaments for 2016 can be found on the Season Info Page.

Roster Construction

We recognize that the 2016 season represents a new situation with Mixed Nationals very close to home and Open/Women’s Nationals far from home. This will almost certainly bring more players to the Mixed game in Ontario this summer. We’re happy about this (we think the Mixed game is pretty great), but this also leads to a concern that players may not be interested in our longer term goals, but rather just playing in the closest location.

While we won’t be expecting players on our roster to necessarily commit to the long-term goal we will be building our roster with that goal in mind. This means that we’ll be selecting players that either have the longer goal in mind, or players that we believe will help us improve as a team as we strive towards that goal.

Our goal is to be the best team we can possibly be in the summers of 2017 and 2018. The processes we have chosen for this season are motivated by that goal and we plan to work towards that goal every time we step on the field this season. If this is something that excites you we’d love for you to join us at tryouts. Sign up here.

2016 Crash and Thunder Tryouts!

Tryouts are coming up! If you’re interested in playing for Crash or Thunder this summer, here’s the information you need to know! We’re excited to build on our successful season last year and hope that you want to be part of it! Below the form is an FAQ if you’re looking for answers about the tryout process.

First of all, sign up for tryouts here:

If you have any questions feel free to get in touch! But here are a bunch of answers to some questions you might have.

1. What should I do to prepare for tryouts?

Being ready for tryouts is important. Be in shape, get out and throw before tryouts, and prepare yourself mentally. Two years ago, we gathered some links for you to read and they’re still just as relevant.

2. What should I bring to tryouts?

Light shirt, dark shirt, water. Lots of energy. 25$ to cover field costs.

3. What if I’m also trying out for another team?

Let us know in the tryout form. We communicate with captains from other teams to set up a tryout schedule so that you can be seen by both teams.

4. What if I can’t make it to all the tryouts?

Let us know in the tryout form. We’ll probably be able to work something out.

5. What commitment is expected if you make the team?

You can find out all the information for the Crash and Thunder 2016 seasons on the season info page. (Crash) (Thunder)

6. Who will be making decisions about the roster?

The roster for Crash will be chosen by the captains and coaches for Crash (Amanda Froese, Dan Balzerson, Kristen Dearden, Neil Thomas, and Yaacov Iland). The roster for Thunder will be chosen by Bryan Yeung, Marcie Chaudet and the Thunder Leadership team.

7. Can you explain the tryout process? When will cuts be made?

All players that are interested in playing with Crash or Thunder will be trying out for the team this spring and is expected to attend tryouts. The first tryout, on April 19, will be for players who are new to touring in KW-Guelph. We like to have a chance to evaluate players we don’t know well before the large-scale tryouts starting April 21. We’ll be sending out emails to all players indicating whether we’ll be expecting to see them at the first tryout. Following the first tryout, new players will be streamed into two groups, one that will continue trying out for Crash, and one that will continue trying out for Thunder. Players that move onto Crash tryouts will be invited to attend the second tryout on Thursday April 21, along with all others that are interested in playing with Crash this summer.

Crash and Thunder tryouts will continue on Tuesday April 26 and Thursday April 28 with separate tryouts for each team. The teams will be selected by the evening of Sunday May 1.

Crash & Thunder Season Info – 2016

Crash and Thunder Season and Tryout Info is now available!

Thunder Season Info

Crash Season Info

In summary, tryouts will be held during the last two weeks of April. We don’t have fields booked for tryouts yet, but we’ll be confirming times and places for those ASAP. Tournament lists for the summer can be found at the links above.

If you want to receive notifications from us when we have updated details for either Crash or Thunder, sign up using the following form.

Clinic #5 – Mindfulness and Downfield Defense

Our final clinic of the winter season will be held this Saturday and that it has a slightly different schedule than normal.

The clinic will begin with a workshop from 7pm-8pm on Mindfulness led by Neenah Navasero. This will be held in the meeting/party room just to the left after entering CORE. In her words…

It will be a talk on mindfulness and its application to competitive ultimate and performance. It will include a significant experiential/interactive component to introduce those attending to a few mindful formal practices and a discussion on how mindfulness can be applied to the game. I will be speaking from my experiences in the 2014 summer winning gold with PPF and how mindfulness played a huge role in my personal performance and mental game throughout the season. I hope to share these mental gems with whomever is interested; I do hope people will come with an open, or what I’ve learned through mindfulness, a beginner’s mind.
Following the workshop, Thomas Black will be back to lead the rest of the clinic from 8pm-10pm on our usual field. He’ll probably be leading on downfield defense.

Clinic #2 – Breaking the Mark with Matt Snow

For our second clinic of the winter, Matt Snow (former captain of Liquid and Maverick) came in to teach us his methods for breaking the mark. Matt’s been breaking the mark for many years and taught us a few of his tricks on Saturday.

The clinic began with a discussion of wrist snap and how important it is to snap your wrist and put spin on the disc for every throw. Spin provides stability to the disc as it flies through the air and is important for every throw. To work on our wrist snap we did a drill called pepper where one player receives and throws discs as quickly as possible, focusing on spinning the disc on each release. This forces you to switch grips quickly and release the disc with good spin every time.

The second part of the clinic was learning to adjust the position of your stepping foot when throwing the disc depending on the position of the mark and the desired angle of the throw: stepping slightly forwards for an IO break, mostly sideways for a flat break, and a little bit backwards for an around OI break. We then spent some time working on these skills in isolation for both flick and backhand throws. Two key mechanics points were to keep your knee centred over your stepping foot and to maintain a straight line between your upper body and your pivot leg. This allows for maximum reach and stability.

In the third part of the clinic we worked on extending the maximum range of our pivots to each side by doing a modified Run-Mark-Throw drill where the mark simply forces the thrower to reach far to the side on each throw. Throwing both flat throws and backwards stepping OIs, we challenged ourselves to extend farther than we were comfortable while maintaining balance.

Finally, we closed out the session by talking about the moves that Matt actually uses to break the mark. I think the most interesting part of this was the simplicity of the motions. It doesn’t take anything extraordinary to succeed at breaking the mark, just excellence at a few motions. It’s difficult to describe but this part of the clinic built very nicely on Thomas’ teachings from clinic number 1, where we learned to lean and explode when making our throws.

Next clinic will be held on Saturday Feb. 13. All the details are here.

Crash Clinics for Winter 2016

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We’re excited to announce the Crash Winter clinics for 2016.

This year we’re planning to host 5 winter clinics from January-March aimed at players that have toured or are interesting in touring in 2016. Our goal with these clinics is to build important skills that will help players grow. We’ve asked experienced coaches to come lead these clinics within their particular areas of expertise and we are so excited to learn from them.

Here are the details:

Dates:

  • January 16, 8pm-10pm
  • January 30, 8pm-10pm
  • February 13, 8pm-10pm
  • February 27, 8pm-10pm
  • March 12, 8pm-10pm

Cost:

$20 per session, but if you come to all 5 sessions, the last session is free.

Location:

CORE Lifestyle & Recreation, 401 New Dundee Road Kitchener, ON N2P 2N8

Signup Details

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Crash and Thunder Leadership for 2016

We’re proud and excited to announce our leadership for Crash for the 2016 season.

Captains:

  • Amanda Froese
  • Dan Balzerson
  • Kristen Dearden
  • Neil Thomas

Coach:

  • Yaacov Iland

We’d also like to take this opportunity to thank Natalie Mullin for her 2 years of devoted service to the Thunder development program as the coach and leader of that team. We’re sad to be losing Nat to the rainy West Coast as she will be moving away in January. Thank you so much for your work!

This leaves us with the happy announcement to make that Bryan Yeung will be taking over Thunder for this summer. We’re confident that Bryan will bring great leadership and energy to the team!