Home Athletes How to Deal With a Former Figure Skating Coach Whose Feelings May Be Hurt

How to Deal With a Former Figure Skating Coach Whose Feelings May Be Hurt

How to Deal With a Former Figure Skating Coach Whose Feelings May Be Hurt

It is common for new and/or young figure skating coaches to sometimes go over and above for their students, so when a figure skater and his or her family make the difficult decision to change coaches, sometimes there can be hurt feelings.

I did some things in my early days of coaching that caused me to personally get hurt.  There were times when I gave some of my private skating students free lessons or I gave skating families that couldn’t pay me right away credit without interest and just asked them to pay me when they could.  Later, I discovered that my generosity (or should I call it stupidity) did not work.

It turned out that I didn’t always get paid.   It also turned out that giving away my knowledge of skating for free was not appreciated.  It hurt tremendously when one of the students I had given so much to changed coaches.

If a former coach had gone over above for a skater by giving lessons at a discount rate or for free, there is a chance that the skater’s parent might be presented with an unexpected bill asking for payment for what you thought was free.  There is even an unwritten rule among skating coaches to not to start a new student’s lessons unless all previous bills are paid to a former coach.

You may not feel that you owe your former coach anything, but the coach may have given a skater’s family a discount or credit thinking that by giving away some of his or her expertise that the skater would never consider making a coaching change.  Once a coaching change is made, he or she may look at things differently and feel that it is right to ask to be paid for the time that was given away.  So…the best thing to do is to just pay the coach and move forward.

A former coach’s feeling may not be hurt just because he or she gave away free instruction; he or she may just be sad to lose the skater.  Don’t say negative things about the former coach to others and try to be cordial or friendly if your paths cross.  In time, the hurt feelings will pass and the awkwardness will be forgotten.

Happy Skating!

JO ANN Schneider Farris

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Jo Ann Schneider-Farris Jo Ann Schneider Farris has participated in figure skating for most of her life as a competitor, coach, and author. Jo Ann was the Figure Skating Expert for About.com for 10 years. Jo Ann began skating as a young child. She won a silver medal in the junior dance event at the United States National Figure Skating Championships and is a US Figure Skating Double Gold Medalist. She coached figure skating and has trained skaters of all ages and levels. In addition, Jo Ann taught hockey players to skate and gave instruction in power skating. She is the author of two skating books: How to Jump and Spin on In-Line Skates, the only book of its kind on inline figure skating, and a personal memoir, My Skating Life: Fifty Plus Years of Skating. Jo Ann also has contributed articles that have been included on the US Figure Skating website and the icenetwork.com website, in SKATING Magazine, Ice Skating Institute's magazine, the Professional Skaters Association magazine, and she also wrote about ice skating for Examiner.com. She is a member of the Professional Skaters Association, The Broadmoor Skating Club, and U.S. Figure Skating. Jo Ann is a graduate of the famous Hollywood Professional School, a school that once was in southern California where many serious figure skaters attended, including Peggy Fleming. She is also a graduate of Colorado College and holds a teaching credential from California State University Long Beach. As a figure skating competitor, she trained under World Ice Dance Champion and Olympic Coach Doreen Denny and also Darlene Gilbert, who has trained international and national teams. From JO ANN Schneider Farris: Hi and Happy Skating! Yes, Happy Skating is my motto. I hope to share my love of the sport and my knowledge of it with you and my goal is to link skaters from all over the world on this site. Happy Skating! Please join me on Facebook, follow me on Twitter, or follow me on Google+ and Pinterest. Email me at joannfarris@yahoo.com


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