She laces up her greave, drops her chain mail over her head, attaches her gorget and places her helm on her head. High atop her horse, she grasps her shield with one hand and her lance in the other. With a yell from her opponent they are off. Racing toward each other at full speed, she drops her lance and hits his shield with a mighty force.
Earning her place in the jousting arena was no easy feat. After serving as a squire for a time, Amy knew she wanted to be part of the fight, with a squire of her own. The taunts from her naysayers only fueled Amy’s determination to earn a spot in the arena.
Amy turned to the Guthrie YMCA to gain strength. She began working out on a regular basis, starting with cardio to build endurance and strength training to build muscle. “I started to feel myself getting stronger,” Amy says. It was time to ride.
It took time and plenty of practice working with the equipment before Amy was ready to be a part of the show. She had some setbacks and severely injured her leg. She didn’t let that stop her. Once on the mend, she returned to the Y and trained harder than before. She was determined.
“I continued to strengthen my muscles and build my endurance. I got back on my horse and became more and more confident with my equipment.”
Now an integral part of the show as Dame Eden, Amy not only jousts, but sword fights as well.
“I fight with Kindness, Patience and Mercy...my swords. Growing up my mom always told me that when others are mean to first kill them with kindness and if that doesn’t work, show them patience and if that still doesn’t work, show them mercy. It just made sense to name my swords in the same way.”
While the fighting is for show, the strength needed is all too real. With new swords, axes and armor comes the need to increase strength and endurance. Amy continues to train at the Y to maintain her strength and prevent injuries.
“I chose the Y because they provide machines, weights and space to build a workout that fits my needs. The staff and other members are friendly and helpful. And most of all, they offer a family membership at a fair price. My kids can workout in a safe environment and my youngest can go upstairs and work on homework or hangout with staff members who have become his mentors.”
“Without the Y, I would not be able to workout with my family and gain strength to do what I love.”