Coach and Support staff primarily enter the Academy Coach Development Pathway from a community club or representative coaching background. Coach and Support staff will often have been identified through their own sport’s development pathways as a coach with potential in a range of areas.
Depending on what level of coaching qualification a coach holds, or the requirement of the Academy program at that time, a coach may enter the Academy Coach Pathway at the most appropriate level.
The Academy Coach Pathway essentially allows coaches a multi-year progression through the Academy, from a trainee coach, through to the opportunity to undertake a Head Coaching role; whilst remaining active within their own club or representative program.
Each sport program carries with it an additional coach development and succession plan to ensure the ongoing development and progression of coach and support staff. And the SWSAS Sport Program Framework itself contains specific outcomes targeted to the coach and support staff who implement it.
A large number of coaching staff however, will remain within the Academy framework for a significant number of years, with many progressing through from Apprentice and Trainee coaches, to Assistant and eventually Head coaching staff.
This pathway encourages coaches at all levels within the Academy to participate within the areas of coach succession, program planning and implementation processes involved within a high-performance sport program environment.
The Academy environment encourages a higher level of coach and athlete relationship and mentorship through shared experiences with fellow coaching staff during the program. It is through these shared experiences that each coach is expected to place a significant value in their own experience and growth as a coach in an effort to provide significant impact into the life and sporting potential of each athlete they coach.
Coaching staff may eventually exit the Academy program, where it is hoped that they will gain selection as either a State or National level pathway coach within their sport, or at the very least, return to their local club, representative program, or community environment.
And having gained additional knowledge and skills ready to coach at a higher level and provide these skills to athletes and fellow coaching staff within their home organisation.
Whilst being an Academy Coach has a large expectation and responsibility, there are a number of benefits of being an Academy coach and support staff which includes;
- Opportunity to develop and train to a state-level skill
- Coach within a high-quality development without the focus or pressures of winning
- Influence and develop athletes who want to gain experience at a high level in their own individual development
- Work with talent-identified athletes (and coaches) within a recognised high-performance sporting pathway
- Access a high-quality coaching network and identified coach development pathway
- Build and enhance own coaching network
- Access to the Academy Lifecycle and Program Framework, including targets and performance outcomes for athletes and coaching staff