Selecting a Private Coach

Congratulations, your skater has successfully graduated from the CanSkate program! What’s next? Pickering skaters interested in continuing to develop their skills have the option to join STARSkate. While coaches are included in the CanSkate program, STARSkate is slightly different. If you are unfamiliar with the skating world, the next steps can be a lot like feeling your way around a dark room. Rest assured, the Pickering Skating Club and Skate Canada are here to help you. While the following document will provide some guidance, do not hesitate to ask Pickering Skating Club coaches, board members and skater parents questions. Do not be shy, at some point, we have all been in your shoes and as a club, everyone is more than happy to help.


You will need to approach, select and hire a SCPSC coach directly. This arrangement is independent of the club. The club will not recommend a specific coach. When you hire a SCPSC coach, the agreement is made between the skater, parent and the SCPSC coach. The Club assumes no responsibility for private lessons arranged between the SCPSC coach and the skater, or for fees incurred as a result of this agreement. Please note, only SCPSC Board approved coaches may be used at SCPSC. For more details on this topic, please see the SCPSC Membership Handbook. Please note, SCPSC reserves the right to approve all coaching requests.

DO NOT WAIT – some coaches may get booked well ahead of the opening season.


1. Ask your skater, why do you want to skate? Do you want to compete or skate for Disney on Ice or do you just want to skate for fun? Do you want to perform Ice dancing, freestyle or pairs? Each coach has their specialties and in some cases, more than one coach may be required. Having a general idea of why you want to skate will help in the selection process.

2. Read Skate Canada’s Long-Term Athlete Development Guide. Pending your goal, this guide will help you understand skater development and create a personalized road map that can be shared with potential coaches.

3. Be prepared to answer some key questions, including how many sessions per week will your skater be participating and how much time per week would you like your skater coached?

4. Get to know the coaches. It is important that the skater and coach have a connection. Your child may already have a favourite coach based on whom he/she has had for CanSkate lessons. Getting to know the coaches’ attitudes towards teaching, competitions, tests, etc., will help you feel comfortable that there is a good skater coach match.

5. Ask parents who use specific coaches what their experience has been like? Are they satisfied with the results? Generally, parents are more than happy to share information.

6. Investigate Coaches’ credentials, availability and rates. Pickering Skating Club Coaches’ credentials and biographies can be found on the coaches’ page of our website. The rate charged for private or semi-private lessons is set at the discretion of the professional coach in agreement with their clients.

7. Contact the coach of your choice directly for more information and/or to make arrangements.

8. Follow Up! Once you have done your research, selected a coach and lessons have begun, it is important that you continue to communicate and meet with the coach to review progress and set expectations.

9. Always confirm with you coach that you are returning for another season. If they do not hear from you, they may end up being fully booked resulting in you having to look for another coach.

10. As your skater progresses, you may find a need to change coaches or add a new coach to gain specific skills. When, and if, the decision to change/add coaches has been made, certain common sense and ethical procedures should be followed. Notify your current coach of your decision privately. Pay any outstanding account balances. Be discreet and courteous throughout.

Pickering Skating Club provides services to members who reside throughout the Durham region, including, but not limited to Pickering, Ajax, Brooklin, Oshawa, Whitby and Scarborough.