Requirements: Most ice skating students are small children, so a coach needs to be patient to communicate with them. Every student learns at a different pace and coaches should be patient with slow learners. Coaches also need to be outgoing and friendly so they can communicate with parents, and tell them about their children's performance. Fluency in Cantonese, English and Putonghua is a definite advantage as there are an increasing number of westerners and mainlanders learning the sport. Qualifications: No specific academic qualifications are required. All coaches have to register with the Ice Skating Institute of Asia and attain freestyle level five or above, according to the institute's standards. Average salary: Coaches have no basic salary. They are paid according to the number of students they teach. Fresh coaches will not have a steady client base, so they will only make around HK$4,000 a month. It takes a few months to build up a client base. Experienced coaches with a steady number of clients usually make more than HK$20,000 a month. Work prospects: The main duty of an ice-skating coach is to plan lessons and then teach students. Each class lasts around 30 to 45 minutes. There are one-on-one lessons as well as group classes. There are usually between two and seven students in a group class, so the coach must carefully monitor students to prevent any accidents. Each student learns at a different pace, so the coach must cater to individual needs. Another important duty is helping students prepare for tournaments. The coach is responsible for finding a suitable piece of music and developing a routine. Coaching is a very physical job - a coach could be in skates and on their feet for many hours at a time. It's important they get enough sleep and drink lots of water. The skating school will help fresh coaches in signing students up. After a month or two, a coach will have his or her regular client base. It is important to develop a good relationship with clients to encourage them to continue learning. Coaches who are outgoing and caring tend to be more popular among students. Long-term prospects: There is not much of a career ladder. Coaches with more than 10 years experience are promoted to senior coaches. A coach's ultimate career goal is to help talented students become great skaters. Coaches generally retire at around 60 years old but some coaches choose to work into their 70s. Where to apply: Any of the city's ice-skating schools. A day in the life of an ice-skating coach A coach has no definite working hours or days. It all depends on what lessons clients book. During weekday mornings there are fewer bookings because most of our students are in school. At around 3pm or 4pm, it starts to get busier as clients come for lessons after school. Saturdays and Sundays are the busiest. Sometimes I have to teach students from 10am to 8pm with only a 30-minute break in between.