Coach’s Name: Alena Zoloto
Athlete’s Name: Marissa Pfeffer
Sport: Artistic Gymnastics
Location: Hamilton, ON
What does your coach do that makes him/her a great coach?
Alena is a coach on a whole other level. She brings the ‘Russian Style’ coaching to life and is widely known for it. She knows when to push the kids to their full potential and make it fun while doing so.
What lesson(s) has your coach instilled in you?
Alena has taught me everything I know as an athlete and as a coach myself. She is my coach, my mentor, and my friend, and I couldn’t ask for anything better.]
Pick 3 words that describe your coach. Explain why you chose each word.
Strict: because sometimes you need that voice in your head to tell you to smarten up, and sometimes that voice has a Russian accent.
Fair: there is not a moment I have ever seen where she has picked favorites on any level. Tough but fair goes above and beyond with Alena.
Loyalty: no matter who you are, if someone is talking negative about one of her athletes, employees, or parents, she will stand up for them and make sure people know not to disrespect anyone in her studio.
What is an important skill your coach has that makes them a good coach?
Alena is able to draw a line between being a friend as a coach and being a friend on a personal level. Especially when teaching older classes, she is able to relate to them and understand what is going on in their lives, but not cross any lines into favoritism, or misguided judgement.
Why do you want to say “thanks, coach”?
I want to say a big ‘thank you’ to Alena for everything she has provided for me. She has given me so many opportunities for me to learn and gain experience by going to coaching conferences and training seminars to further my own coaching techniques. Thank you, Alena!