Six years ago Kat made the decision to turn her life around for the better. Before discovering boxing Kat weighed twenty five stone and struggled with mental health issues. She began by visiting the gym but felt like she needed something more.

Initially Kat was reluctant to join the group boxing sessions, so began by building confidence in one to one sessions. As her confidence grew she wanted to help others by sharing her own story and helping out at coaching sessions. She has now been involved in coaching for a year and gained her coaching qualifications six months ago.

Kat mainly works with young people aged ten to sixteen years old, which includes those who have been referred to the club by local agencies including the police.

To support all the young people at the club, but particularly the referred individuals, Kat explained how discipline plays a central role in every session.

Overcoming nerves and gaining confidence are the challenges Kat faces whilst coaching as although she now leads sessions the thought of standing in front of a group of young people is still daunting. She told us how seeing the young people benefit from the sessions helps to overcome the challenge. She also explained that the sessions allow her to give something back. Giving the young people the opportunity to learn new skills and develop respect for themselves and others.

Kat’s advice for others when it comes to coaching is that, “You can always learn even if you don’t think you’re good enough.” She explained that even if you do not feel confident enough to coach initially, leading sessions helps to develop key coaching skills.

She told us that, “You’ve got to give to get out of them.” Explaining that the young people she works with will only engage in sessions if you are willing to invest as much of your own time and effort as them. The relationship between coach and young person needs to be mutual, to ensure that respect is developed and benefits them both.