Coaching Principles course offers lessons in communication, character, and sportsmanship; classroom instruction enables in-person interaction

Author: Human Kinetics Coach Education Marketing


Are there coaches in your sport programs who could use improvement in the areas of sportsmanship, ethics, character, communication, or relationships?

Consider this example:

With the championship game on the line, your star player jaws with and then spits on an opponent. Your head coach and other players clearly see it, but the refs don’t catch it. Does the coach pull the player for disciplinary reasons and risk losing the game in the process? Or does he pretend like he didn’t see it and call the player’s number on the game’s final play?

How would you want your coach to respond? The answer will reveal what’s really important to you: sportsmanship, athlete development, team rules, accountability, and discipline—or winning at all costs.

This scenario and many others like it are contained in the course Coaching Principles, offered through Human Kinetics Coach Education. Accepted by more than 30 state high school associations and state departments of education as meeting coaching education and certification requirements, Coaching Principles will challenge your coaches to develop a coaching philosophy and examine their motivation for coaching—the drivers for just about every decision they make as coaches.

Based on the text Successful Coaching, the course also helps coaches enhance communication and motivational skills; become more effective teachers and trainers; and minimize risk. Coaching Principles covers the fundamentals of being a successful coach—on and off the field.

In addition, the Human Kinetics Coach Education course Sport First Aid is accepted by the majority of organizations as meeting requirements for first aid. Sport First Aid covers first-response protocols for more than 100 injuries and illnesses coaches can expect to encounter whether at practice or in games.

While many coaching courses are offered exclusively online, Coaching Principles and Sport First Aid are delivered as classroom courses as well. Classroom courses are taught by certified instructors who in most cases are high school athletic directors who oversee coaching education and certification in their districts. Instructors receive free training and are provided ancillaries (instructor guide and DVD) for conducting the course. Human Kinetics Coach Education’s nationwide network of Coaching Principles and Sport First Aid instructors has always been central to the program’s success; commitment to classroom instruction remains as strong today as it has ever been.

“For many high school athletic directors and coaches, an in-person coaching clinic, typically delivered in a weekend session, is the preferred place for learning,” says Jerry Reeder, assistant director, Human Kinetics Coach Education, and liaison to state high school associations and high schools. “The classroom environment affords participants the unique opportunity to interact with and ask questions of instructors, share experiences with fellow coaches, and build camaraderie,” continues Reeder. “Classroom instruction, in comparison to its online counterpart, also affords athletic directors the comfort of knowing when, where, what, and how coaches are taught. For these reasons, many athletic directors are going ‘old school’ and adopting or returning to classroom instruction.”

This is certainly the case in Pennsylvania, where a groundswell of training has been taking place over the past few years. A mandate instituted by the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association (PIAA) requires all coaches to gain certification by June 2018. In advance of the deadline, hundreds of proactive athletic directors in the state have become certified to teach classroom versions of Coaching Principles and Sport First Aid. Thousands of Pennsylvania coaches have already been trained through classroom instruction, and thousands more are poised to gain their certification in the coming school year.

Last fall, Michael Andolina was an athletic director who took the step to become a certified instructor and conduct a clinic to certify his coaches. The experience was a positive one for him and his coaches. “My coaches had several ‘aha’ moments, and the program really defined what high school athletics is all about,” said Andolina, who has since taken a new position as PE instructor. “It was a valuable professional development experience for my coaches, and we all took a lot away from the classes.”

An additional initiative in Pennsylvania, and duplicated in Missouri and Wisconsin, has Human Kinetics Coach Education partnering with the athletic trainers’ associations in those states to deliver the Sport First Aid course. Sharon Panske, athletic trainer from Richland Center, Wisconsin, became a certified Sport First Aid instructor as an opportunity to help coaches in her school district comply with the WIAA requirement.

“After my first clinic, coaches who were starting their seasons immediately saw benefit from the hands-on instruction provided in the course,” Panske says. “As the athletic trainer, I can rest easy knowing that if I can’t be at the game or at practice, coaches who’ve attended my clinics know what needs to be done in case of an injury.

“Athletic directors would be wise to encourage their athletic trainers to certify as Sport First Aid instructors and teach the course to coaches in need of certification,” states Panske.

Classroom instruction has never been more affordable than it is right now. Human Kinetics Coach Education has implemented free instructor training, bundled course discounts, and cooperative buying plans that substantially reduce the cost of educating coaches. Invest in your coaches and your kids—contact Jerry Reeder, assistant executive director, Human Kinetics Coach Education, and take advantage of this incredible offer on our courses. Call 800-747-5698, ext. 2325 or email today to learn more.

Of course we realize classroom instruction may not be conducive in every situation. Feel free to contact Jerry to discuss the many online course options for certification through Human Kinetics Coach Education.

Whether you're a high school athletic director or administrator, K-12 or college instructor, athletic trainer working with high school athletes, or administrator representing a national governing body or other sport organization, being a certified instructor will enable you to take control of your coaching education program and train your coaches in the classroom setting whenever and however you need to.