Skate Ontario/Canada coaches are members of our National Sport Organization, Skate Canada and are trained through the Coaching Association of Canada’s flagship National Coach Certification Program (NCCP). Aligned with the Long-Term Athlete Development Model, our coaches receive professional and sport specific training to deliver appropriate level programming to their athletes.
Our coaches must fulfill the following requirements to be considered “in good-standing” and therefore eligible to coach in a Skate Canada club:
Like most other Canadian figure skating clubs, South Dumfries Figure Skating Club (SDFSC) offers group lessons at the Pre-CanSkate, CanSkate and Star 1-2 levels. The addition of private coaching is recommended at the Star 1-2 level but is not mandatory. However, once a skater moves into the Star 3-10 levels, the addition of private lessons is mandatory.
Private Coaching is recommended to all skaters wishing to pursue the test/competitive aspects of figure skating. Even CanSkate children benefit from some private coaching, but it is not necessary. Private and semi-private lessons with individual skaters help the skater move more rapidly through the various skating levels and provide additional training to further develop skills. The different areas a private Coach would work with skaters are skills, dance, and free skate.
Lessons are generally 15 minutes and range in price depending on the Coach's qualifications. Please speak directly to the individual Coaches for their fees and availability. Lessons are booked directly with each Coach and they will let you know their payment schedule as well.
Choosing Your Coach
As your child continues into STARSkate, you may want to decide about which coach you want to hire from among the available coaches in the club. The coach should be someone the skater feels comfortable with, and one you both respect as an individual as well as a teacher. You want a coach who treats your child with respect and who is interested in your child's development as a person as well as a skater.
Be sure to inquire about the certification level the coach has attained. It is a good idea to talk directly with the coach to determine their coaching and skating background and experience and what training they have done to increase their coaching knowledge and stay current with trends and developments in the sport. A more knowledgeable and educated professional coach will help ensure you are getting the best value for the investment you are making in your child.
Regular meetings and planning sessions between the coach and parents are important. Communication is the key to any good relationship and the coach and skater/parent relationship is no different. There are at least two distinct times when coaches and skaters/parents should discuss their needs and expectations surrounding their coach/skater/parent relationship: the initial meeting when the skater/parent is looking for a coach; and a yearly meeting at the beginning of every skating season. At the initial meeting, information such as the coaching philosophy, roles and responsibilities of each individual, fees, skating budget, skating equipment, your child's safety on and off the ice, base and support coaches, amount of time committed to skating, off-ice training, lesson scheduling, behaviour and conduct of the skater should be discussed. Your coach should also set dates for progress report meeting throughout the year.
It is not unusual for a skater to change coaches during his/her career. Skaters often seek specialized attention form different coaches at different times to help them meet their skating goals. When and if, the decision to change coaches has been made, certain common sense and ethical procedures should be followed:
When looking for a coach, get information directly from the potential coaches or your club about the coach's coaching qualification, their coaching experience, formal education, test passed as a skater, competitive experience etc. Talk to other parents and skater and watch how the potential coach interacts while they are teaching other skaters. After all, you may end up paying this coach a fair amount of money over several years so take the time to find the right coach for your child.
*Adapted from Figure Skating: What Every Parent Needs To Know complements of Skate Canada
Program Assistants (PA’s)
SDFSC PA’s are easily identified by their red vests
Importance of the Program Assistant: