Sport, Fitness & Recreation

Sports Coach

Sports coaches teach amateur or professional athletes the skills they need to succeed at their chosen sport.

  • Entry-level education

    VET qualification

  • Job outlook

    1 2 3 4 5

What does a Sports Coach do?

Coaches teach amateur or professional athletes the skills they need to succeed at their chosen sport. They teach sports skills to individuals and teams of all ages and abilities.


Work activities

As a sports coach, you would:

  • provide training direction, encouragement, and motivation to prepare athletes for games, competitive events, or tours
  • plan, organise, and conduct practice sessions
  • explain and enforce safety rules and regulations
  • plan and direct physical conditioning programs that will enable athletes to achieve maximum performance
  • instruct individuals or groups in sports rules, game strategies, and performance principles, such as specific ways of moving the body, hands, or feet, to achieve desired results
  • analyse the progress of games or competitions and give instructions to players
  • carry out post-competition analysis of performance
  • travel with individuals and teams to competitions.

Key skills and interests

To become a sports coach, you would need:

  • a thorough understanding of and enthusiam for your sport
  • good communication skills
  • good interpersonal skills
  • the ability to motivate others
  • discipline and dedication
  • good physical fitness
  • preparedness to travel and to work on evenings and weekends.

Working hours and conditions

Working Hours

Coaches often work irregular hours, including evenings, weekends, and holidays. Full-time coaches usually work more than 40 hours a week for several months during the sports season.


Coaches travel frequently to sporting events. You are likely to need a current drivers' licence.


How to become an Sports Coach?

Entry Level Education

You can work as a sports coach without formal qualifications. Most sports have a coach qualification framework that is managed by the sport's state or national governing body.

Your employment prospects may be improved if you have a background in the specific sport and/or have tertiary qualifications in a sports-related area. You may like to consider a VET qualification in sport coaching or sport development, or a degree in exercise and sports science, sports management or human movement. To get into these courses you usually need to gain your senior secondary school certificate or equivalent. English, mathematics, biology, and health & physical edication would be appropriate subjects to study prior to university.

It is recommended that sports coaches become accredited. The National Coaching Accreditation Scheme (NCAS), coordinated by the Australian Sports Commission, offers education and a nationally recognised qualification to people coaching at all levels.


Job outlook

  • 1 2 3 4 5

Employment of sports coaches is projected to grow faster than the average for all occupations.

Rising participation in sport at high school and in the community generally, as well as the growing interest in professional sport, are likely to increase demand for coaches.


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