‘I love training – it’s so challenging with different abilities’

DEDICATED Paul Crocker at Planet Ice
DEDICATED Paul Crocker at Planet Ice

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My whole life is skating, I’ve been skating since I was about eight.

I naturally progressed into coaching from doing it for so long.

So I’ve been coaching for four years professionally.

I teach all ages, from five – and I don’t know how old the oldest one I teach it, around mid-60s.

And from beginners right up to the top level.

I love training people as a job.

It’s so challenging with the different ages and abilities.

We do 15 minutes to half-an-hour in the lessons.

In one half-an-hour I’ll be teaching a 65-year-old lady, who is petrified of the ice.

In the next half-an-hour I’ll be teaching a toddler who is also petrified.

Then the next I’ll be teaching a high-level skater who is not scared of anything.

It changes all the time, you’re dealing with different personalities and different levels of confidence, as well as ability, it’s so dynamic.

It’s very one-to-one most of the time.

That’s the kind of coaching that we do.

I took four disabled people to the second inclusive trophy in Dumfries, Scotland – there’s only ever been two.

It started last year and this year was the second year.

This year they tested out a new judging system, which would allow disabled people to skate alongside able people.

They get what’s called an impairment score, which means they’re factored in.

When their score comes out, they add the impairment score and it puts them roughly where they should be with the able people.

Because they proved that works they can now take it to the Paralympic committee and all the national competitions in the country.