First Aid FAQs

First Aid Training for Coaches and Leaders FAQs

UKA has revised its policy on First Aid provision for coaches and leaders so that it is aligned with the HSE requirements under Civil Law and Duty of Care.  As a result, all UKA Licensed Coaches and Leaders must have a suitable level First Aid Training certificate, renewable every three years and linked with the DBS process.


Q – Why are coaches and leaders being asked to undertake First Aid training as part of their learning?

A – Athletics training involves activities which place increased strain on the body and involves equipment which can cause injury in certain circumstances. Despite practices such as risk assessment by venues and coaches or leaders, in addition to training guidance for coaches and qualifications detailing how to create session plans tailored to an athlete or runner, things can and do go wrong. Being prepared could make a difference to the outcome for any individual who sustains an injury when under your care as a coach or leader.


Q – What type of First Aid Training do leaders and coaches need to complete?

A – The level of First Aid training required will depend on the coaching or leading athletic activities the coaches undertake.  At the point of licensing or re-licensing, coaches should refer to the First Aid Guidance to determine which First Aid Training they need to complete:

Q – How can I access the course?

A – For coaches and leaders renewing their licence the course will be available within your Mandatory Training module. You will receive a link to this when you renew your licence. For learners entering the Coach Education Pathway (Leader in Running Fitness or Coaching Assistant), this First Aid course will be included within your qualification. Anyone else wishing to access the UKA First Aid Essentials Course can do so here.


Q – How long does the course take to complete?

A – The category A course is 3 modules in length. Each module takes between 30 – 45 minutes to complete. You can start and leave the course at any time, which means that you can manage completion around your own schedule.


Q – Is there a test at the end?

A -There is a short multiple-choice knowledge test at the end of each module. There is a requirement to get 70% of answers correct. If the coaches or leaders don’t achieve this, then they can have 6 attempts in total at no further charge.


Q – The coach or leader is having trouble accessing the course.

A – Booking information and trouble-shooting guides are available on our course booking pages. If they still can’t access the course, please contact


Q – What if the coaches only coach at a venue where there are always trained First Aiders present?

A – Immediate First Aid can prevent a bad situation from getting worse. Coaches or leaders are best placed to initiate First Aid directly while further support is immediately sought from the trained personnel at the venue.


Q – Do coaches have to do the UK Athletics recommended module?

A – No, if they have a valid First Aid Training certificate already, or wish to do an alternative course*, then they can email a copy of the certificate to with their name and urn at the point of re-licencing.

*Please refer to section 5.1 of the First Aid Training for leaders and coaches policy, for guidance on determining and selecting suitable courses.


Q – If an existing First Aid Certificate is not accepted by UKA, can a coach or leader appeal this decision?

A – Coaches and Leaders who wish to dispute a decision, should appeal by email to within 14 days of receiving the decision, stating on what grounds they wish to appeal.  The original email, with copies of the original certificate, should be included within the appeal.  The Health & Safety Team will review the initial decision, grounds for rejection and your appeal grounds and respond with a final decision within 14 days.


Q – What about a new coach who has registered for a coaching course on Athletics Hub, that includes First Aid Training, but they already have a valid First Aid qualification. Do they have to do the First Aid module associated with the coaching course?

A – No they don’t have to do the module however, we strongly recommend that all leaders and coaches who have access to the module complete it. Refreshing their knowledge could make a difference to an injured athlete/individual in their care.


Q – What about an existing coach who has registered for their mandatory training module on Athletics Hub, that includes First Aid Training, but already has a valid First Aid qualification. Do they have to do the First Aid course  associated with the coaching course?

A – No they do not have to do the online First Aid course. The individual will need to email a copy of their certificate to UKA at the point of re-licencing. However, we strongly recommend that all Leaders and Coaches who have access to the module, complete it. Refreshing their knowledge could make a difference to an injured athlete in their care.


Q – Why do Coaches and Leaders in category B and C have to find their own courses?

A – The HSE no longer endorse First Aid Providers, but rather guide choice as to suitable First Aid Training syllabus content for different scenarios. UKA have adopted this as a Quality Assurance Standard.

We are currently in dialogue with First Aid providers and discussing opportunities relating to Category B and Category C training and are sure that by working collaboratively across the sport (with the HCAFs) this will identify any potential funding schemes that may be available to support clubs, groups and leaders accordingly, where these categories are identified as required by risk assessment.


Q- I coach / lead ………………………… Can you tell me if/ what………?

A –

The environment a Coach / Leader delivers training activities in and the populations they coach, have too many in the moment variables for us to advise from a distance. The Code of Practice and Training Guidance are designed to help you make informed choices.


Q – The First Aid Training Module is also available as a standalone resource. Why is this?

A – For many of the reasons mentioned above and others which can be found by following the link below, UKA feel it is important that the reach of this heavily subsidised course extends beyond just licenced leaders and coaches and therefore have made this course accessible for others involved in the sport in any capacity that may have an interest in developing their capabilities as a First Aider.


First Aid Saves Lives – Ten Powerful Reasons to Learn First Aid


Q – The UK Athletics First Aid awareness course costs less than others on the market. Why is this?

 A – UKA have chosen to develop and host our own online course (endorsed by RoSPA), so that we can offer savings on equivalent courses available on the open market.


Q – Are our training sessions uninsured if we don’t have a first aider present at every one?

 A – It is important to distinguish between insurance and good practice. UKA is in the fortunate position to be able to provide Coaches and Leaders with very extensive insurance cover. Good practice is for activities being carried out to be risk assessed and reasonable provisions put in place to reduce risks to an acceptable level . Having first aiders at a session would be considered “reasonable” for the level of risk for training sessions. Reasonable approaches are highly likely to be insured. For this reason, we have made first aid training a mandatory requirement linked with Coach licensing.

Training sessions may be insured without a first aider present, but this would be as a result of other decisions and actions, which UKA do not assess as part of the licensing scheme, being reasonable. Therefore, we can’t be absolute for or against whether insurance would respond unless our guidance is followed.


QIt is going to take us several months to arrange for all our run leaders and coaches to gain their First Aid qualification. Can we provide anyone attending our sessions with a disclaimer until we can guarantee that all sessions will meet the UKA standards?

A – It is for this reason that UKA and the HCAFs made the decision to phase this requirement over a 3 year period and align it with Coach and Leader Licence renewal. However, it is worth noting that if more than one run leader leads a running group in category B for example, then as long as one has category B level training, then the other can opt for category A as a minimum. As stated above, leaders and coaches should adopt good practice at all times and Risk Assess the environments in which they will be operating.


Q – Will we need to stop our training sessions until we can guarantee that we have appropriately trained First Aiders present at every session?

A – No you won’t. The addition of the First Aid requirement is to add to the already good practice happening in clubs across the UK, further safeguarding those involved in the sport ensuring it remains a fun and safe sport to participate in.


Q – Please can you tell me what an emergency response is?

A – ‘Emergency response’ refers to actions taken to save lives and prevent further deterioration in physical and mental well-being.


Q – What if a Coach or Leader for health reasons is unable to carry out first aid. Do they still need to do the training?

 A – Yes they do. The requirement is linked to the Coach Licence scheme and awareness with first aid strategies can be communicated by the coach or leader to others in the event of an incident.


Q – I coach my group remotely, do I still need to do the training?

A – Yes you do. The requirement is linked to the Coach Licence scheme. Your role as a coach includes provision for the welfare of the athlete for sessions you prescribe, whether you are in attendance or not. NB Code of Practice and Supervision of Training Guidance.


Q – Do we now have to carry a more comprehensive First Aid kit?

A – First Aid Kit Guidance for Coaches and Clubs is on the UKA Health & Safety website pages.


Q – Can I do my First Aid training before my Licence expires

A – It is good practice to be First Aid Trained. As long as your certificate is dated within 3 years at the point of Licence renewal, it will be accepted. How that can be processed will be communicated in your re-licencing email.


Q – What is category B and C?

A – Category B is eFAW+sports, Category C ie Outdoor First Aid Training (typically 2 days).


Q – Does the insurance provided to Jog Leaders following completing the Leadership in Running Fitness course, cover someone providing first aid?

A- UK Athletics insurance does cover a coach or leader for first aid that is incidental to a coached or led session. If you are providing first aid cover specifically, i.e. that is your role, then separate insurance would be required.


Q – I have heard that being a certified first aider leaves you open to legal action?

A – This is not the case. Being a certified first aider is actually more likely to be beneficial if someone was to try and raise a negligence claim.