Top Filipino figure skater Michael Martinez taught the basics of his sport to children during his three-day skating camp at the SM Mall of Asia outdoor Ice Skating rink in Pasay City beginning Wednesday.
“I always told them to believe in yourself and do not be afraid because if I can do it, the gold medalist can do it, then anybody can do it,” the 2015 Asian Trophy champion told The Manila Times.
“Most of the time I get along and crack jokes with the kids, so they can enjoy while learning,” Martinez added.
Martinez, assisted by several coaches, led 24 participants with ages 6 to 18 years old, in on-ice training sessions.
“We taught them how to warm-up, to stretch properly, proper stroke, on how to use your edges, proper pushes, bending of knees and proper use of jumps.”
“We are happy that the kids can cope up easily. They are fast learners,” said Martinez.
Martinez explained that the latter part of the camp is devoted to teaching budding skaters how to achieve higher jumps, spins, as well as the more difficult edges.
As a culmination activity, Martinez along with the 2015 Philippine National Figure Skating champions will stage an Ice Show on Saturday at the SM Megamall ice rink.
Martinez was the first figure skater from the tropics to qualify for the Olympics and the only one to represent the Philippines in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, where he finished 19th overall.
After the initial camp, the 19-year old Martinez will conduct another workshop in SM Seaside City Cebu on July 1.
He will then head back to the United States to prepare for the Asian Trophy in August that will be held in Manila.