I speak often about how important the "culture" of any organization is, but when it comes down to it, it is a complicated concept that few people understand, and, in my humble opinion even fewer value as an important factor in the success of skating clubs.
I never thought I would be a retired skating coach. Skating was my passion, my life and my reason for getting up in the morning. Coaching quickly became my new passion after University, and I had always envisioned myself as one of those coaches sitting on a stool teaching from the boards at 90, still loving it and giving back.
So in an effort to save my fellow coaches some time as they work with athletes that may have these invisible disabilities, I thought I'd compile a list of the things I've experienced and information I've researched in an effort to better help YOU help YOUR students.
As a coach with 30 years experience working in the Canadian figure skating system, and a skater of 47 years who also amateur coached, (I can't be that old, can I?) I've seen and coached in nearly every variation of learn-to-skate program offered by SkateCanada. From the N.S.T. program, to Parent-and-Tot, to Learn-to-Skate, and EVERYTHING… Continue reading SkateCanada Canskate: Has It Lived Up to the Hype?
Parents can be our biggest allies as coaches. It is OUR job as coaches to figure out how to communicate effectively with them, set the parameters for expectations for them and what they can expect from us, and create a positive learning environment.
If I could go back in time and give advice to my younger coaching self as she was starting out, here are the things I would tell her.
I’d like to share with you an incident that I have yet to reconcile within myself as to whether I was right or wrong; whether I over-reacted or under-reacted, whether I was defending myself or being petty, whether I was calling out someone for trying to take me down a peg or whether I was actually the one who made her feel badly.
I wrote this piece in January 2017 after the controversy surrounding the judging of the women's event at the 2017-2018 US National Figure Skating Championships. In light of Ashley Wagner's bravery for coming forward with her allegations of sexual abuse, I thought it only appropriate to re-post.
A step by step primer on how to set your goals for figure skating or dance.