Female coach spotlight: Kerry Norfolk (Norwich City)

October 23, 2021 | by Matt Halfpenny


Eastern Counties coach Kerry Norfolk is determined to set up a female regional squad in the area after coming onto the Female Coach Development Programme – and knows the importance of keeping it simple.


How did you first get into boxing?

I had a previously participated in kickboxing for several years and then, due to a knee injury, I moved over to boxing. I found the ‘art’ of boxing fascinating and undoubtedly one of the toughest sports in the world.

I found the technique, physical capacity – strength/power, co-ordination and endurance – discipline and the strength of mind needed to succeed highly motivating. As a female, it has given me the confidence to know that I can take care of myself, as boxing can effective in real life self-defence situations.

How pleased are you to be involved in a programme that is actively bidding to push women and girls’ boxing forwards?

I felt very proud to be accepted on the development programme. It has been a humbling experience to be one of the final 10 coaches to be chosen.

It is really exciting not just for my coaching development, but for all females that want to become involved in boxing. Norwich City are proud to have 25 females registered with England Boxing; hopefully we will have 10 carded female boxers by the end of the season.

What do you hope to get out of FCDP that can improve you as a coach?

Having created a personal development plan, I have been able to identify areas that I would like to improve on, such as creating individual and class plans for national level boxers, improved higher level pad work skills and starting a female squad in the Eastern Counties.

I have already utilised the knowledge of my mentor Rachel Bower and it has been really helpful being about to bounce ideas with her. Her advice and comments have been thought-provoking.

How much will attending the course help when you return to your club environments?

Being able to write collaborative, robust development plans with boxers will be a big plus to take back. This will enable goals to be agreed within their plans and evidence progress over review periods.

Using a collaborative approach will enable boxers to take ownership of their plans too, with the hope that the individually tailored plans will support boxers to progress in their divisions with a goal to be offered a place on the England Boxing Talent Pathway.

On a wider trajectory, I am hoping that the FCDP will enable myself and fellow cohort member Donna Harvey-Arnell (Ipswich) to start an Eastern Counties Female Development Squad.

On a personal level, the course will develop my own coaching style and knowledge.

Who are your biggest boxing inspirations?

I can still remember watching Carl Froch in his early professional career – this ignited an element of excitement and passion for the sport.

More recently, following Katie Taylor’s journey from amateur boxing to dominating on the professional field on the world stage. In my view, she is one of the most inspiring athletes in the world.

Coaching wise, it would undoubtedly be our former head coach (at Norwich City) Tom McAllister, who has a unique way of being able to make the biggest difference to a boxer whether in training or competition by giving the most simplest instruction. As Amanda Coulson stated “keep it super simple” (KISS), and I try to adopt this approach in my coaching.