04.2013 Tyra Shanks

League: Angel City Derby Girls   Team: Hollywood Scarlets

Tyra Shanks

Skater Spotlight: Tyra Shanks

Fun fact about yourself?
I am a total Science nerd! Yes, it is true. Currently I am studying toward my Bachelor of Science degree in Geology at Cal Poly Pomona. I am reaching for the stars and hoping to work for JPL/ NASA someday. Yes I study rocks, and yes they are cool!

Career Highlights?
Between March Radness 2012, Team Bionic, and training in Puerto Rico, I have loved every moment of my derby career However, my favorite moment is definitely making the Hollywood Scarlets. I remember receiving an email back in 2010 asking me to attend Scarlet practices. I was five months into my derby career and I was already being cheered on by the big girls, my heroines. The Scarlets continue to inspire me to be the best I can be. I do not know who I would be without them. They are my rocks (no Geology pun intended).

Pre bout routines: What do you do to mental/physically prepare?
The week before a bout the Scarlets pep each other up by sending daily texts and emails of inspirational quotes, movie clips, or just a sweet reminder of how proud we are to wear red and gold. Personally, I watch youtube clips of the most inspirational professional athletes, past and present. Near the middle of the week I watch “Rocky.” That’s right, the one-two punch guy who, against all odds, wins. Right before a game I stretch, hydrate, and focus: keeping my eye on the prize. I also stay near my team, they give the best pep talks and truly mentally prepare me for the game.

Roller derby skater you admire and why?
Oh gosh, that’s an easy one: Laci Knight, a.k.a. Lace N’ Arsenic. Have you seen her guns?! Anyways, that’s beside the point. Laci inspires me greatly. I met her at March Radness in 2012 when I was one of the campers chosen to skate the banked track bout. I had never skated bank track before, but Laci was so patient and kind and answered every single question I had throughly. We have kept in touch since, and oh boy was I excited to learn she was joining the Scarlets! She is always ready and focused in any aspect of roller derby. Whether that be work-out time, practice, or game day. Lace is such a smart derby player and I swear she dreams about new strategies. If she needs to work on a skill, Lace will set aside time to work on it specifically for hours until she has perfected it. Whenever she coaches us, her practice plan is made nearly one week ahead of time, and I always walk away feeling like my mind was just blown. And most of all, whenever I need a pep talk, she is always there. Always, without fail. She is the absolute best. <3 What other hobbies (other then roller derby, duh!) do you enjoy?
Whenever people ask me, “How’s life?” I say, “Work, school, and derby! All day everyday!” I wish I could tell you, along with derby, I am thrill seeking sky diver who knits a sweater in mid air while juggling ping pong balls and playing the ukelele. But being an aspiring Geologist and hitting my best friends take over my day to day. However, like the saying goes, roller derby isn’t a hobby, it’s a lifestyle. Ain’t that the truth!