Accomplished boxer Kieran McMaster has made a massive impact in his sport and also his community. As a young coach who works tirelessly to help the next generation of boxers in his community, he had his dedication recognised by being named the sportscotland Young Coach of the Year in 2019.
In his role as a sports mentor with East Ayrshire Council and a coach at North West Amateur Boxing Club, he has worked with young people from throughout the area of all ages and abilities.
We caught up with Kieran as part of the 2020 #COVChampions campaign to look back over his sporting life.
Can you remember your own first involvement in sport?
My first involvement in sport began through football, I played with my local team Stewarton Annick from as early as seven years old. I loved it, playing with friends, fresh air, running as fast as I could. I have some amazing memories from my time in football.
Where did your journey into the world of boxing begin?
I started boxing at 10 years old, I went to a boxing fitness class on a Saturday morning in hopes of improving my fitness as well as my physicality. I took to boxing very well. Balance, timing and focus are some of the things you need to succeed. I had these qualities from an early age. I was very teachable, I believe this is what makes my journey a successful one!
How did you feel when you discovered you had won a COV Award?
When I found out I had won the COV Award I couldn’t believe it. I have worked so hard in my role as a sports mentor for young people. All of my time and effort goes into the kids I work with. I just expect everyone else is as committed and driven to the improvement of children’s health and well-being as I am. Turns out I may have been going the extra mile. Receiving the COV Award really showed me the importance of my role and the significant difference I have been making within East Ayrshire.
Has being successful in winning a COV Award changed your sporting life in any way?
After winning the COV Award my confidence in my programme is sky high. I believe in my methods and techniques more now than ever before. This year has been a tough one, opportunities have been few and far between, however, during these difficult times I have been able to continue my work with young people, the importance of my input has not been lost and I continue to do my best for every individual I work with!
Would you encourage more people to take up a sport?
I would encourage absolutely everyone to take up sport. I am a big preacher of physical and mental well-being and the importance of staying fit and active. Sport and exercise is absolutely vital to having a happy, healthy and balanced lifestyle. Exercise will change lives for the better, if anyone is struggling with mental health, sleeping, addiction, anger or even just fitness. GET INVOLVED. TODAY. Sport will change your life, for the better!
Introducing COV Champions
We couldn’t let the current restrictions stop us from recognising the great work that coaches, officials and volunteers have done over the past year, and that’s why we are committed to celebrating as many COV Champions as we can. Maybe you know someone who has gone above and beyond to help keep people connected to sport in these challenging times?
To do this, please get involved in the #COVChampions campaign. Tell us all about the outstanding achievements by coaches, officials and volunteers you have seen this year. They can be any age, from any sport, or in any local area.
Perhaps someone close to you has kept you active during the pandemic? Or promoted an inclusive and welcoming sporting environment? Let us know!
How to get involved
The campaign will be active throughout November with the hashtag #COVChampions and getting involved is easy. Just follow the steps below:
- Choose a coach, official or volunteer that you feel deserves a little recognition for their work this year
- On social media, tell us about their work and why it has been important to you or others
- Remember to include a photo or a link for more information where possible
- Don’t forget to use the hashtag #COVChampions and tag @sportscotland.
Find out more
Discover more about boxing on SportFirst.