Most often children with diagnoses such as cerebral palsy, autism, Down’s syndrome, visual and hearing impairments, diabetes, heart disease come to classes. Adults with disabilities also become students. There are special rehabilitation programs after a stroke.
This is what says Olesya Alieva, Russian alpine skier, multiple champions of Russia, chief instructor of the Dream Skiing program, part of the Dream League project, engaged in sports rehabilitation and socialization of people with disabilities: “Downhill skiing demand from the body those movements that it practically does not perform in ordinary life. While mastering these movements, the brain forms new neural connections. If a person has lesions in the brain, neural connections can form around them. Sometimes, after the first lesson, the child suddenly starts holding a spoon or utters the first word. It’s incredible to realize that you’ve helped make such tremendous progress. “.
A similar effect is produced not only by alpine skiing but also by other sports: roller skating, football, basketball, tennis, curling. On the slope, court, playing field, or playground, children and adults with disabilities learn to be more independent and independent.
Like any other job, the profession of a sports instructor for people with disabilities has its advantages and difficulties. Some of them are:
- Ability to combine with study or other work, flexible schedule.
- Competitive salary.
- Regular sports, work in the fresh air.
- A rare specialty, the opportunity to become “one specialist in a million.”
- Work in the regions, the ability to work abroad.
- Communication with people.
- Great emotional return from customers.
- A sense of belonging to something important.
- Work happens physically difficult.
- Requires high emotional involvement.
- In the case of alpine skiing, work only a few months a year or with seasonal relocation.
To become a certified instructor, you need to have at least secondary vocational education and successfully pass the exam by taking specialized short-term courses. Information about them can be found on the Internet. The courses include theory and practice: they will tell you about how to work with people with disabilities, teach you how to handle special sports equipment.
The most difficult direction is alpine skiing instructor: only a person who is not only excellent skiing himself, but also has an instructor category C or higher can become one.
It is easier to become a roller-skating instructor – before the course, it is enough to complete a short preparatory program to learn how to confidently hold on roller skates. Such instructors can be, for example, teachers from inclusive schools or employees of medical centers where people with disabilities undergo rehabilitation.
Another option is a team sports instructor. This profession requires minimal physical training and is suitable for a wide range of people.
If you have physical education, psychological, pedagogical education – this will be of great help in your work and will give you career prospects.
The easiest way is to contact one of the sports centers that conduct programs for people with disabilities. There are such centers throughout Russia.
A sports instructor for people with disabilities is not just a rare profession, but a scarce one. According to Natalya Belogolovtseva, the creator of the Dream Skiing charity program for people with disabilities, there are no more than a thousand such certified instructors throughout Russia. That is, after completing the courses, you immediately become the specialist who is “torn off with your hands”.
In Moscow, a sports instructor working with people with disabilities can receive 1000-1200 per hour. The recommended working time is 4-5 hours a day. If there are a desire and opportunity, work can be combined with study or other work.
Natalya Belogolovtseva, founder of the Dream Ski program: “A person with a sports instructor certificate has many career paths. At some point, you can go into the field of teaching and become one of the chief instructors who train such specialists. If you have the appropriate education, you can pursue a career in inclusive schools, sports, and health centers. Private practice is possible.
Some trainers go into social entrepreneurship, especially in regions where there is a high demand for it. They open their own ski, rollerblading, sports centers. ”
And here’s what he thinks about the new profession recruiting expert Alena Vladimirskaya: “The fact that there are so few such specialists in Russia today can only be explained by the fact that people hardly know about this profession. I myself have not heard about her recently. But this is a good new direction for trainers and instructors who, say, were left without work due to the pandemic. It can also be paid attention to athletes who often end their sports careers very young – at 30, 40 years old.
There are few such specialists around the world, but for people with disabilities, unfortunately, there are many around the world. At the world level, there are sports programs, grants, developed countries are actively investing money.
And in Russia, there is interest in this area rises. The state helps, but, more importantly, big companies help, those for whom charity, among other things, is an important form of self-promotion. This may sound cynical, but it is actually good news, as it means that the industry is promising.
The world is becoming kinder, which means that in the coming years the entire sphere related to help, charity, and serving for the benefit of other people will develop. ”
Humanity is becoming more and more humanistic. At the same time, volunteering ceases to be a matter for rare altruists, companies and foundations struggle to ensure that activities for the benefit of other people are adequately paid. And also working with people with disabilities brings great moral satisfaction. It seems that it is easy to burn out on it, but in fact, it turns out the other way around.
Olesya Alieva, chief instructor of the “Dream Ski” program: “Anyone who starts working with people with disabilities for the first time is scared. There is a feeling that you can fail, make it worse, make a mistake. But, firstly, everything that is needed, you are taught in courses, there is practice, you come to the slope already prepared. And secondly, you start to notice progress almost immediately. There is a real feeling that your actions are improving someone’s life.
To work as an instructor, you do not need to have any it is with special dedication, this is not a work for wear, emotional burnout here does not happen more often, if not less often than in other professions. Because no matter how much you give, you get much more. ”.