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Sports Coaching Jobs Advice

Sports Coaching Jobs

Sports coaching is an interesting job that offers loads of opportunities for you to give back to your community and push people to reach their ultimate sports and fitness goals, so we understand why you might be considering it as a career path.  The Fitness Associates provides a job platform for sports coaching jobs in the UK, as well as practical career advice to guide through finding and securing your perfect role. We pride ourselves on bringing you a wide range of exciting roles with the most reliable and enthusiastic employers, offering you the career satisfaction you are craving.

How can I become a sports coach?

As with most careers in the fitness industry, there are a couple of different ways that you can begin your career in sports coaching. Ultimately, you will need a coaching qualification that is recognised by the national governing body for your sport, but we do note that some employers require higher qualifications. Here is a breakdown:

Minimum requirements:

  • A sports coaching qualification – you can obtain this directly through your national governing body or through a college or university course that includes coaching as part of the curriculum. If you choose the second option, make sure the course you choose is recognised!
  • A Disclosure and Barring Service check – this is a criminal records check that is usually required, particularly if you are working with children, or in healthcare.

Additional requirements:

  • As we mentioned, some employers may require higher qualifications for their roles. This could include:
    • a foundation degree in sports coaching and development;
    • a higher national diploma (through a further education college), specialising in sports and exercise science; or
    • a Bachelor degree in coaching, sports science, sports studies, physical education or another related field.


  • You could also commence your sports coaching career through an apprenticeship, which will allow you to bring in an income and get applied experience in the industry, while you are studying.

Regardless of your chosen path to gaining sports coaching qualifications, we recommend you do some volunteer work as an assistant coach for a while before you get started. This will allow you to try it out before you commit to several years of study.  

I am already a sports coach, but I need a change.

We get it. Sometimes a change is just what you need to reinvigorate your passion for your career. But before you catapult yourself into the job boards, think about these questions:  

  • Are you looking for a role as an employee of a school, community group or club, or are you more interested in working with people involved in competitive sport?
  • What type of clients do you want to work with?
  • Are there any specialisations you would like to explore?
  • What are your financial expectations? Do these fit with the type of clients and specialisations you have in mind?

Once you have the answers to these questions, use them to tailor your CV and covering letter to make sure you are targeting the right organisations and opportunities. This will ensure that you are working towards your ideal role, rather than just being tempted by the next job you see advertised.

What can I expect, working as a sports coach?

A good sports coach finds the balance between designing challenging activities and keeping programs fun and engaging.  Here are a few things you can expect as a sports coach:

  • Physical and mental challenges – In sports coaching, you need to work with your clients on mental challenges as well as their physical performance. For this reason, it is important to include mindset work in your coaching practice.
  • Long hours – Expect to be working long hours, particularly if you are coaching competitive sports people. Your clients’ training will increase in the lead up to competitions and you will need to be available to support and travel with them as required. If coaching in schools or community groups, you may be expected to attend training outside of school hours.
  • Getting organised – As a sports coach, you need to be super organised. You’ll be designing activities, challenges and training plans, but you also need to track your clients’ progress and results and be able to tweak your coaching methods to produce better outcomes. Doing the paperwork is just as significant as the face-to-face elements.

Interested in finding out more about the sports coaching jobs available in your area? Click here to check out our job search function!