She's a people person. She's welcoming whether you just met her 30 seconds ago or you've known her 30 years. She makes you feel part of the group. She lets people kind of be who they are. Even though her political side tries to change people, every other aspect of her is free spirit and allows other people to be free-spirited.
The process for our evaluation has been seven months and 160 training sessions and 20-some-odd games.... Our process sifted out that next level, the Olympic level. The four [defenders] that we started in the first two games are the most consistent performers we have at the highest level.... You saw the Brazil game where their quickness on the ball was remarkable. Our process tells us that the ones we started are our best defenders first and foremost.... What Brandi contributes is possession out of the back and leadership and a strong air presence.
I create tension on the elastic band by moving away from the person who's holding it, and I maintain that tension while jumping up to head the ball. It works my legs and core while also working on balance. You feel it helping on the field when you're going up for a header or when an opponent is pulling or pushing to gain position.
Balancing on an unstable surface, I'm forced to use every muscle in my leg and all the muscles in my foot. It also strengthens my ankles, which is important considering the number of ankle sprains in soccer. You don't need to add the kick. At home I'll just balance on the disk for a minute. If my husband or son [Cameron, 16] is around, sometimes they'll toss the ball, and I'll catch it instead of kick it.