Team coaching




Team coaching

The adoption of team coaching goes hand in hand with increased specialisation,  for example;  few coaches are good at teaching everything; choreography, jumps, spins, skating skills, ice dance, pair skating.   The team coaching concept makes best use of each coaches talents,  for example the team may consist of a jump & spin coach, a choreographer and an ice dance coach.

Therefore if your club is going to embrace the team coaching model as the model of choice in the future it needs to :-

a.    Release a team coaching guideline to it’s coaches that outlines best practices for efficient team coaching.

b.    Attract and hire highly specialised coaches who embrace the team coaching model,  for example hire; strong jump coaches, spin coaches and choreographers.  


Example team coaching guideline

The first coach hired by the parent is by default the “base coach”,  all other coaches hired after shall be referred to in this document as “sub coaches”.

Only the base coach shall speak to the parent at length,  the sub coaches may only comment to the parent directly concerning the lessons that the sub coach is conducting with the student.

The sub coach shall NOT at any time:-

  1. Approach the skater or parent to arrange additional lessons.
  2. Approach the skater or parent to arrange entry in competitions.
  3. Arrange off ice classes directly with the skater or parent without prior approval from the base coach.
  4. Criticise or undermine the base coach in any way.
  5. Teach skills or disciples outside of their assignment,  for example if the base coach assigns the sub coach the role of spin coach,  the sub coach shall not start teaching jumps to the team coached student.
  6. Solicit the skater or parent to change base coach or change clubs.
  7. Give the skater gifts such as clothing / jackets or other gifts.
  8. Hug the skater excessively or try and build a closer relationship than is necessary in the sub coach role.

If the skater or parent approaches the sub coach with a request to change base coaches to that sub coach,  the sub coach shall refuse such a request and state that they are loyal to the base coach.

Structure;  generally no two coaches should be teaching the same discipline;  for example the base coach may teach pair skating, sub coach No.1 may teach choreography and stroking, sub coach No.2 may teach jumps and spins.   If more than one coach teaches the same disciple then the base coach shall decide and communicate to the sub coach what skills should be taught in each lesson.


Generally many coaches are reluctant to allow team coaching of their students (where they are the base coach),  this is because they are afraid of losing the student,  hence it is important that the sub coaches agree to the clause above where they will not accept the student to become the base coach of that student.  Sure parents won't like the clause but without it team coaching may not work.

It's important that base coaches and sub coaches know what is expected of them and what they can and cannot do,  it may be a benefit to put these in writing,  call it a contract if you will.


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This site was last updated 04/24/11