Coaching is one of the greatest titles one could be given in life. To be a coach means multiple things to many people, but most importantly a coach is a mentor and an opportunity for positive influence. A coach is someone who can show you the right way to lead your life, to act under pressure, to behave in a group. A true coach seeks to improve the player in all aspects of her life, not just on the field. When I began coaching 6 years ago, I didn’t fully appreciate the impact that I could have with my students and players. Teaching skiing was the start of my coaching career, and began with the youngest of the young, all the way down to teaching 3 year olds how to walk on skis. It was a challenge for sure, but something that I welcomed, and clearly enjoyed to still be doing it 6 years later. As the season continued, I became a better instructor and my kids were learning to ski better and faster. Coaching was rapidly becoming my favorite job.
Before we continue, a short back story on how I ended up a coach. I began skiing at the ripe old age of 2 years old, between the skis of my father, also a ski instructor. At the time of this writing, he has been teaching for 23 years, and is the recipient of the Professional Ski Instructors of America ( PSIA) Level 2 and Master's Certification, as well as the children specialist 2 certification. Though this sounds like gibberish to some, it essential means that he has the equivalent of a Master's degree in teaching with a bachelor's in child instructing. Pretty knowledgeable guy. So, as I grew up skiing and watching my father teach, and seeing how his students listened and enjoyed skiing with him, the thought grew in my mind to begin teaching. So I brought it up to him when I was 13, and he said it's tough, but go for it! I went through the training course, and became a ski instructor at Mount Snow. 2 years later, I was PSIA Level 1 cert, essentially an associates in skiing. It clearly stuck, and I had caught the coaching bug.Jump to today, where I am preparing for my second season coaching at Bolton Valley, and my second year as an instructor for the NU Fitness Club at Norwich University. That second job was a totally new experience for me, because it involved coaching people my own age, with similar experience. When I started, I was cocky and thought I had everything to teach and they had everything to learn. That was not the case at all, as some of the freshman had years of experience in the gym, and could teach me a lot. That shows how even the best coaches can stand to learn something, no matter how long they’ve been at it. One of my good friends was a result of coaching, I ran the workouts when he was a freshman, and now he works with me to coach the freshman in the club this year. We’re both still learning, and we’re both better teachers and lifters because of it. Between coaching younger children and coaching my peers, I have become a better person, leader, mentor, teacher, and friend. So, when someone calls me coach, I’m immediately filled with pride and joy that I’ve earned that title, and take every chance I can get to fulfill the job of coach to the best of my ability, creating a positive influence on people's lives, and making myself 1% better everyday,