Should I change Clubs?

Discussion in 'Moves In The Field' started by pet_lover48, Aug 8, 2010.

  1. pet_lover48

    pet_lover48 New Member

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    Hi! I am a Canadian figure skater (16 yrs old and at the novice level.) In Canada, we have to register with a cetain club every fall (in Semptember.) This club is then considered our home club for that season/year.

    Anyways, I am thinking about whether I should change my home club, or not and wanted to know what you guys thought. :)

    First, before I give you all the info, anyone who's not from Canada should know how clubs here work. (If you Canadian, you can skip this part.)
    In Canada, we don't really skate much on "rink ice." (It's pretty rare for rinks to offer this, however, I do skate on a few rink sessions/week.) How it mainly works here is that the clubs buy the ice and then we skate on the club ice sessions, (which can sometimes be at several different rinks in the town, depending on the place.) In order to compete you obviously have to be a member of a club.
    I'm not sure if this is all the same as it is in the US and other countries, but I think that's it's a little different.

    So, here's my situation:

    I have been a member of my current skating club basically for ever, (ever since I started skating.) So, basically that's been about 8 years now and I've never been a member of another club. This club is also located in my home town/where I live.

    Now, the thing is that I haven't actually skated there in around 6 months and for the past couple years, or so when I did skate there, I only did usually about once/week and twice/week several years ago was about the max. I also don't plan on registering/skating there for any of this year's fall/winter sessions either.

    However, so many times we were going to change clubs becuse of this and other politics and stuff, but my family and I sort of "stuck through it." Now, I am the clubs top skater and sort of the last older kid left.
    However, they don't offer enough ice/proper coaching for me to train on. They don't even really skate all summer and the sessions they have during the rest of the year are usually farily crowded with younger, beginner level skaters. In fact, I think the highest level skater they have other than me, is only about Preliminary, or Junior Bronze level, or so.) Basically, if you want to be a high level competitive skater, you have to go elsewhere for your training.

    So, I do almost all of my training at a club/rink about 40-50 min from my house. I started skating at this club quite a few years ago and pretty well everyone knows me there.
    This is also where my coach is. I like this club becuase it has several other skaters at my level and that are other kids as old/older than me too and the training is more "competitive" than my hometown club, which I refer to it as more of a "recreational" club. This other club has quite a few kids in the competitive stream and several kids at the novice-junior level too. They also have quite a lot of ice time available (and skate about all year round - of course.) :D
    Anyways, I do most of my practising on their ice (except for a few sessions I do on rink ice) and all the kids I practise with are from this club. There are even some kids that live in my hometown that skate there, but they changed to that club when they started practising there.

    So, I guess feel that's really where my club should be. However, I guess the thing holding me back is that I've been with the other club forever and that I live in that town too, but I don't even skate there now, so I'm not sure what to do?

    Anyways, let me knows what you guys think - your thoughts/suggestions/comments on what I should do.
    Should I stick with my old club, or change clubs?
    All responses/replies greatly appreciated! :)
    Thanks,
    Pet_lover48
    PS: Sorry for all the typing/writing. I guess I kind of got a little carried away, but I figured I'd give you all the info I could think of.
     
  2. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    My thoughts are if you skate at that rink and use the club's ice time, join that club.

    Is there any reason why you can't be a member of both and then just nominated which club you want as your home club?
     
  3. jp1andonly

    jp1andonly Well-Known Member

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    my brother and many elite level skaters have kept their old home club even though they moved on and trained at other more elite clubs. For our family, it was important to have the club listed as it was the club and the bunch of coaches there that really guided his early career. Ya, my brother was the top skater there for years but he was always recognized at the AGM's even though he didnt skate there, got bursaries, etc. Our family always gave back to the club volunteering for the local competition.

    If you have no ties to the club and feel no alliance with them, then switch. However I will say this, it is nice to be recognized and have a place to call home where they actually know you then to be a number where no one cares from year to year who you are....
     
  4. jp1andonly

    jp1andonly Well-Known Member

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    in canada you can only have membership at 1 club. You can skate wherever you like but can only call 1 club your home membership

     
  5. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the answer. Here you can basically join whatever clubs you like, but you must nominate one of them as your home club. I am a member of two clubs, but if I compete, I have to nominate which I choose to represent. I am thinking about changing which club I want to represent when I do compete.
     
  6. pet_lover48

    pet_lover48 New Member

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    Hi! That's neat you can be a member of 2 clubs there. :) If we could do that here, that's probably what I'd do, but I guess we can't, so I'll have to just decide on which club I'd like to be a member of.
    Thanks,
    Pet_lover48
     
  7. ltnskater

    ltnskater Active Member

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    I kind of agree with this, if you aren't even training at your "home club" at all, then in my opinion it is better to switch, that is if you don't really have any ties to the club (ie. parents on the board/executive etc.), however, if you do, then what jp1andonly said is true, it is nice to be recognized as the top skater back at home.

    Here's a story, One of my friends (btw we're both in Canada) switched rinks and clubs when she went competitive (don't know the details of when), but she retained her original club where she started at as her home club (recreational, the next highest skater was like junior bronze, my friend was competing junior/senior competitive). I remember her telling me how occasionally she would go there to skate in the evenings with the other much lower level skaters at her home club, but she would always be welcomed there, all the coaches were happy to see her, and of course all the skaters looked up to her as well, so it really depends on your situation.
     
  8. pet_lover48

    pet_lover48 New Member

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    Hi! Thanks for the reply. Yes, I think I agree with what your saying. I think my best bet will probably be to change to the other club.

    Other than it being the only club that I've ever been with (sort of a bit of setimental value I guess) and that I've done some Program Assisting (assistant coaching of learn-to-skate) and have done a few of their yearly shows, I don't really have too many "ties" with my old club.

    I actually never really "clicked"/got along/got to know many of the skaters/coaches there anyways, (except maybe a bit when I was younger) and we often more ended up more trying to avoid people because there was so much politics and stuff.

    I feel much more comfortable at the other club. I know most of the other kids (since we train with each other almost everyday and stuff) and we get along pretty good and stuff. :)

    I mean there's a few politics and stuff at this club, but I think there's politics at just about every club you go to.

    Anyways, like I said, I think I'll probably change to the other club, but we haven't fully made up our minds yet.
    Thanks again,
    Pet_lover48
     
  9. Doubletoe

    Doubletoe Well-Known Member

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    If people always stayed with something just because that was they way it had always been, we would still be living in caves. Change clubs! :)
     
    hanca and (deleted member) like this.
  10. pet_lover48

    pet_lover48 New Member

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    Hi! Haha! :) Yes, I guess your kind of right about that one. :D

    I think we're probably going to change clubs, but I guess we'll make the final descision when it comes to actually doing the registering (skate canada fee and for sessions and stuff.)
    Thanks,
    Pet_lover48
     
  11. ltnskater

    ltnskater Active Member

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    Yea, after hearing this, it seems like the best option would be to switch (atleast I would in your position), but whatever you do, good luck in skating! My skating improved so much in half a summer by going to a more competitive club with people that forced me to move faster, and there was more motivation for me as well. You also seem alot more comfortable with the more competitive club, and that is what really counts :)
     
  12. Ina_Bauer

    Ina_Bauer New Member

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    I'm sure what jp1andonly meant is that in Canada, you can only call one club your official home club. You can, however, be a member of as many clubs as you skate at. A member is normally someone who pays the membership fee, & registration fees at a club and pays ice fees. We have members at our club whose home clubs are spread out across the country, but they are considered members of our club by the board and included in all club activities, with the exception of club trophies.
     
  13. pet_lover48

    pet_lover48 New Member

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    Hi! Yes, your right about that. It does seem to help motivate me and I feel more comfortable skating/practising there with kids that are more "competitive" and other kids that are at around my level and similar ages. :)

    So, yes, I think we're probably going to switch clubs. (Of course, like I said, we'll make the final decision when it comes to actually paying the fees and stuff.)


    To Ina_Bauer:
    I understand what your trying to say. My old club (the one I probably only want to be a partial member of), doesn't have any membership fee (just the Skate Canada one) and if I don't skate there (buy any of the sessions), I guess I can't really stay a member there.
    Thanks,
    Pet_lover48
     
  14. Ina_Bauer

    Ina_Bauer New Member

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    Pet_lover48 : If you don't intent on registering with your current home club for any ice sessions this coming season - make sure that they do not register you with Skate Canada as a member. Membership season runs from Sept 1 - August 31st - so clubs will be starting their online registration with Skate Canada soon. If your current club declares you a member with SC - then you will owe them the $31+ and be considered homeclub. If you want to change to the new club afterwards, it will cost you money to switch plus the $31 SC fee.

    So declare your intention to join the new club and enjoy being a member of a club where you feel comfortable! No sense representing a club that doesn't make you feel good.

    The major reason that competitive skaters keep their original home club while away training at another - is that often the club provides some sort of financial support, along with loyalty. Also, skaters training in a high performance centre in areas like COS or BC or Quebec - often have better chances reaching Canadians representing their weaker sections. Not always the case as plenty of strong top ten skaters came from 'weaker sections'. But if your goal is to make it out of Sectionals to Challenge - then representing a section with very strong skaters at your level, will make it more challenging especially since the CoP system means winning or losing by .01.
     
  15. purple skates

    purple skates Shadow dancing

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    Personally, I'd go with the new club if I were you. I'm in the US, but I just switched clubs. I like the old one for both sentimental reasons and their support of adult skating, but their volunteer hours are simply too much for me. Since I never skated on club ice anyway, I switched to a much smaller club that is less expensive and has no volunteer hours. I told my former club to feel free to call me if they need someone to announce, but this way I am not tied to their requrements,
     
  16. withrespect

    withrespect New Member

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    you can be a member in Canada of 100 clubs if you want too. Has nothing to do with Skate Canada.

    You need to consider a few things imo. Your home club ...do they need your press presents? , Have they supported you in bursaries etc? Are you proud of where you live? It isn't nec about where you train.

    For instance Brian Orser competed for Penetanguishene Ontario as his home club. Brian didn't even skate in their club. He did skate in that arena (private ice) but he trained in Orillia at Mariposa.

    Same for Jeff Buttle. He competed for Sudbury. He left there when he was 9 years old and trained in Barrie at Mariposa. He kept Sudbury as he was very honored to be a Northern Ontario competitor.

    Lots of external things to consider.
     
  17. Ina_Bauer

    Ina_Bauer New Member

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    Actually - withrespect - Skate Canada has everything to do with membership in a skating club in Canada since they are the official organization that clubs must belong to in order to offer Skate Canada Starskate, Canskate and competitive programs.

    Each club must register their members with Skate Canada as of September 1st each year, and so if pet_lover48 is a member of 100 clubs - each club will register her as a member but only one club can register her as a homeclub member. The $31 Skate Canada fee has to be paid just once - but section levies and other club fees would be included in each membership or club that she registers for ice with.

    If pet_lover48 has no real loyalty to her small club, other than it is in her hometown, and the larger club is more welcoming and provides her with a better environment, then there is no real reason to stay with the original homeclub

    While many star skaters have retained their original homeclub, many more have changed clubs because of the advantages of representing a larger club. Since I don't get the impression that pet_lover48 is another Jeffrey Buttle - then I would advise switching to the club that makes her feel the most comfortable and welcoming.
     
  18. withrespect

    withrespect New Member

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    Yup I'm pretty familiar with the system. I think you misunderstood what I said. Pet can in fact join as many clubs as she wants too but she must declare ONE as her home club. :hat1:
     
  19. pet_lover48

    pet_lover48 New Member

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    Hi! Thanks for all the replies everyone! :D

    Yes, I can only join 1 club and I think I'm probably going to join the new club. That's what I would like to do, except my parents (especially my Dad, who's really into my skating - goes to every practise.) He sort of wants me to stay with the old club, but I'm trying to convince him to have me change to the new club.

    I like it better there and feel like I am more of a part of that club. (I think I'm probably even going to do their show this year too.)

    Anyways, we'll most likely be making the final decision this weekend, as we have to let the clubs know, so one can and one won't register me with Skate canada before Sept. 1.
    So, any last suggestions/comments you have before we make the final decision, let me know. :)
    Thanks,
    Pet_lover48
     
  20. pet_lover48

    pet_lover48 New Member

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    Hi! Well we finalized the decision today - we changed to the new club. :D

    Thanks for all the comments/suggestions. They were really appreciated! :)
    Thanks again,
    Pet_lover48