A BROMSGROVE fitness coach has been named ‘Online Coach of the Year’ at a prestigious national awards evening.
Ian Northcott BEM took the title last week at the UK Coaching Awards.
Ian began coaching after retiring as a West Midlands Police officer in 2015.
He had noticed there was not enough exciting exercise sessions for older adults so started the Mercian Nordic Walking – most of his clients were 55 or older. The oldest was 78.
He took his coaching online during the pandemic and found participants loved it far more than he expected. He now runs a whole range of online classes and, once the nation returned to exercising outside, he decided to run both online and in person sessions.
On his latest award he said: “It felt amazing and humbling to be recognised – we there were some very impressive candidates in the field.
“The two who made the final would have also been worthy winners.”
Ian fought off competition from more than 100 nominees to make the shortlist.
When he was in the police force, he had lots of dealings with homeless people in Birmingham city centre and started the ‘Socks and Chocs’ charity to – as the name suggests – provided those living on the streets with items, including socks and chocolates.
The charity was recognised with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service (QAVS) in 2017 and, two years before, Ian received his British Empire Medal for the way he had helped the homeless.
A video of him, when he borrowed a busker’s guitar on New Street, and belted out Oasis’ Wonderwall, went viral on YouTube and led to him being known as the ‘Busking Bobby’.