Premier Education

Do you need coaching qualifications to become a Premier Education sports coach?

If you’re someone who’s mad about sports and has an enthusiasm for spending time with kids and inspiring young minds, sports coaching could very well be the career for you.

With that goal in mind, you might be left wondering what steps you need to take to get there. What qualifications do you need, how to get them, and what you can do to set yourself on the path to making sports coaching a career?

The great thing about a career in professional coaching is that there’s no one hard and fast rule to getting into this rewarding vocation, as long as you have the motivation. It’s a path that’s as suitable for school leavers as it is for those already in a related position and looking to make a career pivot.

In this article we’re going to take a closer look at the different pathways you can take to becoming a sports coach, as well as the requirements needed to coach with us here at Premier Education.

A coaching qualification can open a lot of doors if you love sports.

Why consider coaching as a career option?

Considering a career in sports coaching is a dynamic and fulfilling alternative to the typical nine-to-five desk job. If you love staying active, effective coaching offers an engaging work environment where you can integrate fitness into your daily life, all while inspiring kids to find joy in sports and reach their full potential.

Who knows, maybe you’ll end up training the next generation of young Olympians! But no matter their level of expertise, watching your students progress and enjoy sport is incredibly rewarding.

What qualifications do I need to be a coach?

As a sports coach, there’s the opportunity to work with children at a variety of different levels and ages to help them achieve their full potential in sports – and have a great time doing it!

As mentioned, there’s no one set way to start a vocation in coaching, and depending on the type of sport and level of athlete you are working with, qualification requirements might change. That being said, there are a few must-have qualifications that you’ll need for the majority of coaching positions that will give you the education you need to get started.

The Level 2 coaching requirement

In the UK, all sports coaches are expected to hold a Level 2 Competency Based Delivery Qualification. This qualification is designed to prepare you to act as an independent coach of multi-skills and physical activity and will introduce you to the principles of both coaching fundamental movement skills and teaching sport-specific skills.

A level 2 UK coaching qualification is a great foundation to begin your coaching journey, as well as your career progression. It encourages the growth of the desirable skills needed for a sports coach such as leadership, since level 2 coaching courses will assess your ability to plan and organise your own sports sessions.

It also provides a platform to continue your studies to higher levels, while also giving a solid base of education if you’d rather get stuck in and make a start coaching.

Knowledge of young people is helpful in coaching.

Do I need a university degree?

The short answer is not necessarily… but it can help.

For plenty of institutions, a Level 2 coaching requirement is enough to get you started and is a great option for many people, especially if university just isn’t for you. But that isn’t to say that the right university degree won’t be valuable should you wish to embark on this as a long-term occupation.

If you want to bolster your CV and learn a bit more about the mechanics behind coaching, these university courses provide key transferable skills that can support you on your coaching journey:

  • Sports coaching and development
  • Sports and exercise science
  • Sports studies
  • Physical education

Premier Education coach requirements

If you’re still feeling a bit lost, here’s what you’d need to be a coach (or activity professional) here at Premier Education.

In addition to your Level 2 Competency Based Delivery Qualification you’ll also need qualifications and training in:

  • Safeguarding
  • Level 3 Paediatric First Aid with a minimum of 12 hours
  • Induction module 1
  • Prevent training
  • GDPR
  • Equality and diversity
  • COVID-19 awareness

As well as an in-date and valid DBS. For delivering specific sports, extra qualifications may be required such as a British Fencing Core Coach Award or British Gymnastics Activity Instructor qualifications.

Coaching courses and apprenticeships are a great starting point.

Coaching apprenticeships

Apprenticeships are a great way to gain the necessary qualifications you’ll need to become a successful sports coach while also learning best-practice first-hand. They typically take a minimum of 12 months to complete and offer a combination of on-the-job and often online training.

They can be particularly beneficial to school leavers wanting to get hands-on coaching experience while getting paid for their hard work. Coaching is an active job, and sometimes the best way to learn is simply by doing it.

Depending on the apprenticeship you’re looking to partake in, they usually require some GCSEs, including English and maths, or equivalent. For more advanced apprenticeships, you’ll likely need at least 5 GCSEs in grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths.

Premier Education has access to some of the best training programmes and apprenticeships in the country through the Educationwise Academy.

Coaching traineeships

If you don’t have the necessary experience or requirements needed for an apprenticeship, a traineeship could be a good alternative.

The best way to think of a traineeship is as preparation for the working world. They are usually shorter courses than a full apprenticeship and are designed to help you build vital coaching skills which you can use towards getting a job or apprenticeship afterwards.

To be eligible to start a government-funded traineeship, you must be aged between 16-18, be a UK or EEA Citizen or have a settled status with no restrictions, be unemployed, not hold a qualification above level 3 and not have undertaken a similar programme before. If that sounds like you, this could be your calling.

Effective coaching brings a lot of fun to the role.

What if I have no qualifications?

A qualification in coaching or an adjacent discipline will certainly give you a leg up and can open up a lot of opportunities when trying to find a coaching role. But it’s not the be-all and end-all.

Part of what makes a qualification valuable is the experience it usually requires to pass.

Find out more about the qualities needed to be a coach to make sure this vocation is for you!

Take on a volunteer role

If you’re concerned you might be lacking some of the necessary qualifications needed to go into professional coaching, volunteering is something to consider.

Talk to your local leisure or community centre, or speak with the organisers of a local sports club in your area. Volunteering in your spare time is a good way to get your foot in the door, enhance existing skills and give you a flavour of what professional coaching might be like.

For some, this volunteer work and the impact you can make on the lives of young people may be enough to fulfil your passion for sport and coaching. Even if it’s not a full-time career, these types of roles can be equally as fulfilling.

Or it might cement your determination to pursue the courses needed to turn coaching into a full-time career. Even better, it will give you experience working in the environment you’re aiming for, and is a great way to get some mentoring from experienced coaches, something that can be hugely beneficial for your career development.

We can support you if you want to get into coaching.

Focus on building your skillset

At the end of the day, coaching children is a dynamic role that takes more than a grade on a certificate. Many coaching positions will often require you to demonstrate the following skills, so building them up now will stand you in good stead when a coaching or learning opportunity arises.

  • Strong verbal communication skills, including the ability to speak with young children
  • Confidence in public speaking
  • Attention to detail, monitoring the progression of pupils in their chosen sport or activity
  • The ability to articulate a comprehensive understanding of chosen sports to help pupils develop their technique
  • Time management techniques both in preparing lessons and during them to get the most out of the session
  • A good understanding of equality and diversity to ensure kids from all backgrounds and circumstances feel involved
  • Confidence in being a role model and setting an example for the children in your care
  • Knowledge of IT resources is also a helpful skill to learn.

You can read more about what goes into effective coaching and the skills and characteristics you need in order to carry out both enjoyable and educational sessions in schools.

Start your coaching career with Premier Education

The UK Coaching website has lots of useful information about entering the profession. However, Premier Education can help you get into the profession no matter what stage you are at in your career.

Our activity professionals are the backbone of what we do. We’re dedicated to helping the next generation of developing coaches with our training programmes.

What’s more, we offer one of the largest coaching support networks available to all our activity professionals which sets us aside from other training companies and means you’re in good hands for the long haul.

Our activity professionals not only directly impact the next generation, but get to deliver varied and exciting programmes from national governing bodies such as the LTA and British Gymnastics.

From entry level to degree level and beyond, we have hundreds of roles available nationwide, with diverse opportunities to suit a range of employee needs. Want to coach? Well, you can get started now!

Become part of our dynamic team!