[Skip to content]

Search our Site
  • Instagram Icon
  • RSS Icon
  • Twitter Icon
  • Facebook Icon
  • YouTube Icon
UK Athletics

athlete to coach programme 

Athlete to Coach

Course Name: Athlete to Coach
Qualification obtained after attending course: Athletics Coach
Environment: On-Track
Age Requirement: 18
Assessment: Yes
Pre-requisites: Must have competed as a senior representing Great Britain and Northern Ireland (including event specific at GB&NI level), or competed as a senior for your Home Country
Once qualified will I require supervision: No
Looking ahead what’s next: Event Group Qualifications
Alternatives: CiRF (Coach in Running Fitness) - if you wish to coach purely in an off-track environment
Lunch: Not included. (We cannot guarantee that all venues have refreshment facilities so please bring lunch and a drink with you).


The British Athletics Athlete to Coach Programme is a bespoke programme, which aims to provide athletes transitioning into coaching with the competencies required to be licenced as a British Athletics Coach.

During years of competing, international athletes can acquire technical and tactical knowledge with respect to themselves and their event. The challenge for transitioning athletes is how to transfer and deliver this knowledge and experiences in a way that is meaningful to others.

As such this 5-day programme is designed to challenge the learner to shift their thinking from that of an elite athlete to one of a coach. The content will be delivered by a team of experienced Coach Education Tutors and Ex-International Athletes (who have already completed this transition). It will be delivered in classroom and practical settings with coaches expected to practice and reflect on content covered between the timetabled days with the support of a qualified coach. 
Day 5 of the programme will be an assessment day. On this day, the developing coach will be observed by a UKA assessor against the competence criteria required to be a UKA Licenced Athletics Coach.

Role AC

Athletics Coaches have many different roles.

• To identify, plan for and continually evaluate the development needs of athletes.
• To supervise Coaching Assistants or Leaders in the delivery of whole sessions or part of sessions.
• To manage the safety and welfare of those under your supervision.
• When qualified and licensed, the Athletics Coach ideally will be operating in a team environment with a range of Coaching Assistants and other coaches in the planning and delivery of these programmes.

British Athletics and the Home Country Athletics Associations promote a culture of coaching co-operation and collaboration by providing further opportunities for formal learning and coach development. The Athletics Coach programme is a formal step towards becoming licensed as a Coach, however, this is only the first step of the coach development journey.

Right person

Athletes who can evidence:
• A commitment to coaching.
• Must have competed as a senior representing Great Britain and Northern Ireland (including event specific at GB&NI level), or competed as a senior for your Home Country.
Equality, Diversity and Inclusion:


The Equality Act 2010 defines a disabled person as someone who has a physical or mental impairment that has a substantial and long-term negative affect on their ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities and we are committed to eliminating discrimination and encouraging diversity and inclusion within our sport. To ensure the coach qualification process provides equality and fairness it is important that:
• We understand the nature of candidates’ disability, so the course tutor is aware and can make reasonable adjustments ahead of the course being undertake


• We support candidates with early interventions where candidates may not be engaging within the course.
Candidates must engage in tasks and activities throughout the course and demonstrate improvement following any discussions with course staff. Candidates not engaging within all aspects of the course are at risk of not gaining the qualification at the end of the process.


DBS & Safeguarding:
For a coaching license to be processed, coaches are required to complete the UKA Safeguarding training module online and have a current police record check, DBS. Checks are not transferable between sports and other organisations therefore UKA must have a new check made. The DBS itself is free for club volunteers. For details on how to arrange a DBS check, please click here.

Topics 1

• Technical Knowledge across all the track and field event groups to Foundation Level as a minimum.
• Factors Influencing Performance.
• Energy Systems and Training Principles.
• Athlete Centred Coaching.
• The Athlete Development Model and Pathway.
• How people learn.
• Skill Development.
• Athlete Profiling.
• Short and Medium-term planning.
• Coaching Process Skills.
• The Role and Responsibilities of a Coach

Resources 1

Access to the Athletics Coach supporting resources is available through your My Learning once you have booked on your course. While some of these resources are not freely available online, they include:

• Pre-Course Welcome Pack
• On Course Workbook
• Mesocycle Template
• Assessment Guidance for Candidates
• Course PPT presentation
• Health and Safety Powerpoint
• On Track 4 Cards
• On Course Technical Video footage
• Assessment exemplars and blank assignment templates

Resources are available in enlarged print. Please contact your Home Country Education Coordinator for further details.

Book Now

The cost of the 5-day programme is £665.

To apply, please return you application form and cheque (made payable to UK Athletics) to
Kylie Ferguson at:

UK Athletics
UK Athletics House
Alexander Stadium
Perry Barr
B42 2BE

Funding Options

1) Split payments over four months – cheques to be posted in advance dated as below. Please email kferguson@uka.org.uk for more information.

2)British Athletics Supporters Club Bursary. You can apply for a £250 bursary towards the course here.

3) Contacting your local club for support. Clubs receive grants to put coaches through courses.

4) If you are a current WCP athlete (funding level A, B, C) you can access the UK Sport Personal Development Award or if you have recently come off the WCP (funding level A, B, C) you can access the UK Sport Personal Development Award within 6 months of leaving the programme.*

*UK Sport are currently only allowing applications for online courses during this period of lockdown (Covid-19).