- Parent Category: Coaching
There are several coaches at our club that work with groups of skaters. They also work with skaters on an individual basis but there are times when skills can be taught very effectively in groups. Each of them has a slightly different approach, but in general, they collect the students of similar skills together for a period of time to work on a particular skill. It might be stroking, or a particular jum or spin and they work through the skill together. Usually after isntruction, each of the skaters in the group will take a turn practicing the skill. The coach then provides feedback and all children hear the feedback so they all learn from each individuals effort.
The groups can be dynamic if the kids aren't all at the same level. Stroking may combine the majority of kids and then a subset might be gather to work on a particular spin and maybe a smaller set for a particular jump. This can be a challenge from a billing perspective so a good lesson plan is required to make this work. Keeping a notebook in your pocket probably doesn't hurt either.
The group environment offers a number of benefits.
- For parents, group lessons usually mean that there is a coaching lower cost as the expense is divided by the kids.
- For the kids, there can be a benefit to watching other skaters at the same level working through the same challenges. They will learn from the feedback that is provided to other skaters as well as feedback that they receive directly.
- For the kids, there is also a benefit of being a slightly more social environment for learning. They get a chance to build up their friendships which will hopefully keep them interested and engaged in the sport for the long term.
- A lot of figure skating is an individual activity and a group lesson provides an environment for kids to be supportive of other skaters and receive some support in return
- For the coach, group lessons permit you to expand the number of skaters you coach without a corresponding increase in your time on the ice. By covering off common skills like stroking in a group environment, the time you save can be dedicated to coaching another individual.