Kelsey McEwen performs her final grad skate at the figure skating carnival last March.

Kelsey McEwen performs her final grad skate at the figure skating carnival last March.

Figure skating coach passionate for helping kids

Coaching close to 40 kids in the upcoming figure skating program, Kelsey McEwen says she excited and a bit nervous.

Coaching close to 40 kids in the upcoming figure skating program, Kelsey McEwen says she excited and a bit nervous.

“I love helping kids and I love skating, so I just put two and two together,” she said.

The Houston Figure Skating Club starts up Sept. 30 and McEwen is taking on the coaching for all five levels of skaters.

Last year McEwen took the NCCP (National Coaching Certification Program) and then took on the coaching of the 40-kid program along with co-coach Adam Ells.

This year she tackles it herself.

“I do a lot of one-on-one coaching because it’s different with each kid. They’re all at different levels and have different things to be working on,” she said.

McEwen says she plans the practice exercises and training and she choreographs performances for all the kids in her program.

When the Figure Skating Carnival and Gala come around, every performance is planned and choreographed by McEwen, and she says she tries to cater each skating number to display the strengths of the skater.

“I try to bring out their best elements and expressions,” she said.

McEwen adds that she took her Junior Assistant Coaching with her previous coach, Jennifer Auston, who taught her the need to be open-minded and creative in planning and working with skaters.

McEwen says that last year some of the skaters helped her with choreographing ideas.

This year she hopes to have some of the senior skaters take their Junior Assistant Coaching and help her coach the younger skaters.

“I love seeing the kids improve,” McEwen said, when asked what she likes about coaching.

“One day they’ll be working on something, and then all of a sudden they can land a jump or complete a stand.

“Its just awesome that it was me helping them get to that point,” she said.

McEwen says a good skating performance involves engaging the audience, expressing the moves, smiling, and having fun.

She adds that to do well takes training and practicing what the coaches tell you to work on.

“You need to put all your heart into it and dedicate your time to it.

“If you want to be serious and go to competitions and do well, you really need to put yourself into it and take your training further,” she said.

The Figure Skating Club program starts September 30, with the Christmas Gala on Dec. 6 and the annual Carnival March 14 and 15. Registration is open now until February. Contact Elaine Kaszas at 845-7402 to register.