Women’s Coach Developement Programme spotlight: Vicki Baker (Peterborough Police Boxing Club)
June 18, 2022 | by Harry Judd
Peterborough Police Boxing Club’s Vicki Baker discusses how the Women Coach Development Programme will help empower her as a coach.
How did you first get involved in boxing?
In 2013, my husband decided he wanted to open a boxing club in Peterborough because there were no other amateur clubs in the area at that time. He had the greatest passion to give young people the support that he had as a young person and believed that a boxing club could have such a positive impact on young people in our community. Prior to this, he boxed and coached for Campol ABC but back then ‘Boxing wasn’t for girls’ in his opinion, so I had little boxing knowledge. All of a sudden, he needed my help, so I progressed from boxing tutor, to level 1 and now level 2. He was really keen to get female boxers in the gym, so I started off organising and assisting with a number of female boxing sessions. These were supported by Chantelle Cameron who was a great inspiration to the females.
How pleased are you to be involved in a programme that is actively bidding to push women’s and girls’ boxing?
Promoting female boxing has been on our agenda from day one so it’s really pleasing to see a wider approach to this and to make the sport more accessible for girls/women. I’ve coached female only sessions for a number of years and have a really successful women’s session each week, but female boxing is still highly underrepresented. Together we can make this programme a huge success.
What do you hope to get out of the WCDP that can improve you as coach?
The WCDP has already helped me to meet other female coaches and build my confidence in the sport. Having that network of other women with similar backgrounds and experiences provides a supportive network and is a real confidence boost. It’s not always easy to understand how females can feel in a male dominated sport, so having that support is key to building confidence and I’m sure a lot of lifelong friends will be formed. Most female coaches including myself just want to be treated equally. I am not just the wife, or the club administrator. I’m a coach in my own right and this course will empower me.
How much will attending the WCDP help you in your club environment?
Feeling that sense of belonging in the sport and having more confidence will help me to be the best coach that I can be. I also want to continue to be a mentor to other coaches in my gym and help them progress to their potential. It’s really rewarding when you get amazing feedback and see how you’ve helped to develop a young person into a great coach.
Who are your biggest boxing inspirations?
My biggest boxing inspiration is my husband Chris. He’s in this sport because he’s passionate about making a difference and helping young people to keep on the right path. Boxing is in his blood and he has a wealth of skills and knowledge he’s happy share. In fact, he genuinely is one of the most selfless people I know. Making champions is just a bonus to him. He’s certainly someone to be inspired by and has so much respect from people. If it wasn’t for him, I would never have got involved in boxing.