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What's a Pivot do? she asked

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What's a Pivot do? she asked

Postby Penny Larceny » 10.14.05 12:06AM

Spittin' Dale-vil wrote:
Ms Penny Larceny wrote:A good pivot is the eyes for her team as well as the last line of defense. Pivots are responsible for keeping the pack together and having an overview of what the pack is doing so that she can direct her teammates if need be. It's hard to keep track of where everyone is in the heat of a jam, so if, for example, your blocker is caught up with an opposing blocker when your jammer comes through, it's up to the pivot to see the situation and either move to help your blocker or jammer, or let your blocker know (verbally, by hand signals) that the jammer is coming through. I've been told a pivot is like a quarterback, but I don't watch football.


Thank YOU, Ms. Larceny, for sharing your valuable info! I'm thinking of cutting and pasting that into the "Rules of the Game" boards. Whaddaya think???

Yeah, I was going to say something about how pivots are the "mother hens" of the pack but I didn't want to lose my teeth so early in my fan-ship. I figured the border collie metaphor was a better choice. :roll:

Here's my next question: Are skaters then not allowed to skate past the pivot? If not, what are the exceptions to that rule?

Thanks, in advance, to your brilliant mind.


Okay, so I moved the thread, since there's no need for it to be relegated to the Manhattan boards...

To answer your question, skaters can definitely skate past the pivot, and the pivot doesn't have to be played at the top of the pack (the "1" position). For awhile, Brooklyn tried playing the pivot in the outside middle position. It had it's benefits and drawbacks. In order to be effective, a pivot should be able to maneuver throughout the pack to where she's most needed and be able to speed up back to the top of the pack to hold the line.

That's my take on it anyway. Some of the other pivots (Snap? Carmen? Emma?) may want to chime in.
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wazza pivot?

Postby hambone » 10.14.05 9:17AM

Actually, as of today different leagues do have different rules about the role of the pivot.

When we played Madison, apparently their rules were such that the pivot defined where the pack was, for purposes of deciding if a player had strayed more than 20 feet from the pack. Interesting idea, but we didn't use it in our joint bout.

Other league rules I've seen do dictate that the pivot *has* to start in the front and that her teammate blockers cannot pass her.

But the general idea of the pivot being the 'mother hen' / 'border collie' is a universal one. I think of her as the middle linebacker.

Everyone's got their own reasons and evolution history... the united league effort to consolidate and standardize these rules nationally is still ongoing and from what I've heard a finish line is supposedly in sight. (We refs don't make the rules, we just interpret/enforce 'em)
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Postby Brie BanD'Camp » 10.22.05 1:29PM

the she-devils skate the pivot a different way. the pivot is used to help regulate both the front and back of the pack, yes. however, the pivot can also be the jammer. how's that? because if you've got good blockers on the opposing team and your jammer can't get through, when the OTHER team's jammer gets through, the pivot can take over as jammer and the original jammer becomes a blocker.

i know it sounds crazy and confusing, and that's the way it was skated 'back in the day'. the she-devils are just trying to be more true to the old-school rules while still adapting to the new ones. but yeah, that's what our pivot does.

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Postby hambone » 10.22.05 2:15PM

A handful of other flat-track leagues around the country use this "pivot/jammer swap" rule as well.

GGRD hasn't employed it to date -- but very well may at some point in the future...
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Sky pivot?

Postby K.D. Caustic » 11.07.05 7:49PM

hambone wrote:(We refs don't make the rules, we just interpret/enforce 'em)


Or not ... in the case of Ben D. Rulz.

The pivot/jammer idea would make my head explode. Hell, last night I was merely explaining general roller derby workings and two friends said, "You lost me" before I even got to the part where the jammers are whistled off.

Remember those 10-year-old girls who attended the Final Champeeeeenship Bout? Maybe by the time they are in GGRD we can think of having a stealth jammer launched out of a pivot.

In the meanwhile, I'll be coming up with more "challenging" questions for the likes of youse guys!

Thanks for all your help so far. School is out for the day!!!
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Postby AnnieMaim » 01.30.07 11:11AM

Brie BanD'Camp wrote:the she-devils skate the pivot a different way. the pivot is used to help regulate both the front and back of the pack, yes. however, the pivot can also be the jammer. how's that? because if you've got good blockers on the opposing team and your jammer can't get through, when the OTHER team's jammer gets through, the pivot can take over as jammer and the original jammer becomes a blocker.

i know it sounds crazy and confusing, and that's the way it was skated 'back in the day'. the she-devils are just trying to be more true to the old-school rules while still adapting to the new ones. but yeah, that's what our pivot does.

Brie BanD'Camp


In our first (wacky) season, we played it where the jammer had the ability to pass to the pivot just by taking off her jammer cap and swinging it over her head. But I believe it's WFTDA 1.0 that states she has to PHYSICALLY pass it to the pivot. I think I like this better, though it resulted in us...never using it.

If the jammer can get UP to the pivot, she probably doesn't need to pass it (though the pivot is probably less exhausted), and if the pivot drops back to take the star, she still has to get all the way through the blockers that the original jammer would have. I think the main purposes of this play are a) a fresh pair of legs mid-jam, and b) to confuse. And it can be quite useful for both. ...if we ever used it.
Pivots are people too.
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Postby hambone » 01.30.07 11:27AM

The posts above which say "GGRD doesn't do a pivot/jammer switch" are stale (note their date).

In 2006 we followed the WFTDA 1.0 rules governing pivot/jammer switch. It happens in practice fairly often; I can't recall it happening in a 2006 bout.
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Postby Flying Squirrel » 01.30.07 11:54AM

hambone wrote:The posts above which say "GGRD doesn't do a pivot/jammer switch" are stale (note their date).

In 2006 we followed the WFTDA 1.0 rules governing pivot/jammer switch. It happens in practice fairly often; I can't recall it happening in a 2006 bout.


I recall Scarlet Rage passing the star, at lease once, in the Queens vs Brooklyn game.
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Jammin' with Pivots

Postby K.D. Caustic » 02.01.07 4:58PM

Do I wrongly recall (in at least one 2006 bout) a jammer coming out of the penalty box and passing the star to a pivot? Was that Scarlet Rage?
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Postby Ana Bollocks » 02.01.07 5:36PM

Think so, yeah.
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