Unless you are into roller skating, you may never have heard of Logan skate coach Margaret Clough. Recently, Margaret won the Audi Centre Springwood City of Logan Sports Awards Sports Coach of the Year.
Coaches are often the unsung heroes in sport and almost always do great deeds while receiving little or no recognition for them. However in Margaret’s case, she was nominated and the rest was history.
Margaret, now 71, began skating when she was young and has built a real passion for all types of skating. Skating is a family sport for Margaret as she met her husband while skating and her children and grandchildren are all into the sport.
For over 25 years Margaret has been showing the ropes to girls and boys after being asked to coach during a lesson her daughter was taking. Starting her coaching on the bay side of Brisbane, most of the years Margaret has been working has been in Logan City.
Teaching several types of skating, including free skating and dance, Margaret has helped many young skaters prepare for and compete in the Artistic Skating World Championships (ASWC). This is an annual artistic roller skating competition sanctioned by the International Roller Sports Federation in which elite figure skaters compete for the title of World Champion.
It was 1996 when Margaret’s first skater entered into the ASWC but it was not the last. There have been many thought the years however this year Margaret assisted the Australian national team at the championships in France where her skater, Rachael Beck, competed.
Just prior to this, Margaret was in New Zealand assisting another one of her skaters in the Oceania championship.
Upon returning from France, the sports awards were being held and as Margaret was a nominee, she attended the event. Still jet lagged from the flight home, Margaret said she really wasn’t ready for the award.
“They were reading all the names out and then I heard mine as the winner,’ she said.
“The cameras and lights were on me and as I walked to the stage all I could think about when I saw the stairs was don’t fall over. I was still so jetlagged.”
Margaret is one of only two elite coaches in Queensland and working at Digi Roller Skating Rink at Hillcrest is a bonus for the city. The status of elite is not given out lightly. Skate Australia is the governing body who controls skating and it’s their decision on who is given elite status.
“It is something that you need to earn. You cannot do any courses to attain it,” said Margaret.
“I get to coach new coaches and help them get their hours needed so they can become coaches while also coaching up and coming skaters.
“It is the kids that keep bringing me back and it is something I really enjoy. I find that kids come for a birthday party and then get hooked.
“If a young skater wants to make it to the world championships they really need to start at primary school age. Anyone of any age and skill level can come and try skating at our star classes. It’s a great way to learn.”
Digi Roller Skating Rink is where you can find A1 Figure Skating Club where Margaret coaches and where you can go for a day of skating fun.