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First Impressions – Seeing is Bee-lieving!

Wondering about whether to give dodgeball a go, but daunted by the prospect of meeting new people and/or trying a whole new sport? We’ve all been there. To help you get over those first day nerves, we’ve asked some of the swarm to tell us about their thoughts and first impressions from their first ever session (however long ago that may be) and how they feel now.

David Streather – Worker Bee, five months’ service

The first thing I felt was how welcoming everyone was. Everyone made a real effort to say hello and not just dive into throwing balls at me. The more senior players and coaches made sure new people know what they’re doing and don’t get left behind. It was really easy to join and settle in quickly. Going for a drink after helped too!

Alexandra Charlton – Honey Bee, one years’ service

Everyone immediately seemed so lovely. I’d been so apprehensive, especially as I’d never even held a dodgeball before. The nerves didn’t last long – after that I think I just felt exhausted – and it was so much fun! I was taught to throw a dodgeball straight away (thanks coach Helena!) and felt like part of the swarm so quickly. I also ached almost constantly for the first couple of weeks, but I don’t think I’d realised how much fun sports could be!”

Embracing lucky no.13 at a Honey Bee team talk
Embracing lucky #13 at a Honey Bees team talk mid-tournament

Tom Shelbrooke – Worker Bee, four years’ service

My first thought at my first bees session (and coincidentally the first bees session) was ‘huh, this is good. I wonder how long this will last for.’ It has now changed to ‘huh, this is alright. I hope it, and I, last for a while longer!’  Not a pensive reflection on mortality, I’m just not getting any younger and younger players are coming through the ranks and will leave me by the wayside!”

[Editor’s note: there’s always an argument for age vs. experience and having been here from the bee- ginning, Shelly certainly has the experience!]

Cat Bawtree – Honey Bee, six months’ service

I first thought, ‘these people are SO friendly, this is a bit much..!’ Now I know these people are, indeed, an over-the-top bunch of weirdos. But I’m fairly fond of them all.”

Christian Hadfield – Soldier Bee, two and a half years’ service

I’d played dodgeball while studying at Warwick university, but I was very rusty when I approached my first Bees session. I was probably more worried about embarrassing myself, but everybody was so welcoming, and I ended up looking like I’d stepped on to a dodgeball court before! After a few more training sessions and a lovely walking social in the Peak District I already knew I’d found a great group of friends. Nowadays I can just relax and enjoy myself at training, leaving the stress for the tournaments!

Bees Sian, Christian, Kelly and Alex show off their stripes
Bees Sian, Christian, Kelly and Alex show off their stripes

Kelly Edmunds – Aussie Bee, on sa-bee-tical in native Melbourne following eighteen months’ service

I was so baffled that all these people were happily joking and laughing one minute, and hurling these dodgeballs at each other the next. We were introduced to everyone within minutes of arriving and the warm up really eased us into it. It seems silly now that we were even nervous in the first place.

Sound like your kind of club? Feel like giving it a go? Our next all-comers session is on Tuesday  from 8-9.30pm at Manchester Academy School. We hope to see you there!