Tag Archives: UK Coaching

New toolkit to help gyms make sport accessible!

photo banner of accessible signs and a person being guided in a gym - text says Free training portal open to all leisure providers

FREE training portal open to all leisure providers!

UK Coaching urges gyms and sports providers to make their facilities more accessible to visually impaired people and has just launched free training to show them how to do just that.

The new toolkit, Inclusive facilities: Supporting people with a visual impairment, created in partnership with Thomas Pocklington Trust, contains videos and resources leisure operators can use to train staff.

Kelly Rodrigues from UK Coaching said: “Small adjustments can make a huge difference for people with a visual impairment to access leisure facilities and sports and become more active. These can be as simple as a member of staff approaching a visually impaired person and introducing themselves.

“We are asking leisure operators to encourage all their staff – from the front desk to their personal trainers – to get engaged with this training programme and make sport accessible in their venues.”

Martin Symcox, Sports Development Lead at Thomas Pocklington Trust, said: “One of the greatest barriers to blind and partially sighted people participating in sport is confidence and we know disabled people are twice as likely to be inactive*, compared to non-disabled people.

“Knowing that a leisure or sport provider understands their needs, helps increase confidence and makes visually impaired people more likely to choose that place to do exercise.”

The toolkit is a free resource open to all leisure providers and contains:

  • What is a visual impairment?
  • What makes an accessible environment?
  • Guiding and communicating
  • The benefits of an accessible environment

Better Energise Leisure Centre in York has worked with visually impaired people and trained its team in how to make its facilities more inclusive.

Kelly, Energise Gym Instructor, said: “Prior to having the training, a visually impaired person coming into the centre, I probably would have been a little bit nervous about asking how they wanted to be supported.  Fitness should be inclusive. We should be welcoming everybody, regardless of their ability.”

Sidney Tambin is severely sight impaired and regularly visits the gym, said: “If a venue is accessible it can really boost a visually impaired person’s self confidence.”

Martin added: “The changes to the environment and procedures are often simple and inexpensive to implement and could actually be of financial benefit as more visually impaired people choose that facility to spend their money.  We will be looking for examples of good practice across the country and will be sharing these with the sight loss community.  So, we urge operators to take a look at the toolkit and train their teams.”



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eLearning testing for screen reader with UK Coaching

eLearning testing for screen reader with UK Coaching

eLearning testing for screen reader with UK Coaching

UK Coaching is currently building an eLearning course (with three modules) aimed at people who want to get into coaching and start out as an assistant coach.

We are building the course to be compatible with screen readers and a range of accessible features.

As such, we are looking for a maximum of 3 people to test the product at the stage, and who would be willing to provide feedback.

If you would like to have a chat about this, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.


Kelly Rodrigues
Development Lead Officer Learning Architecture
T: 0113 2907624 (2227) | M: 07974942692
KRodrigues@ukcoaching.org | www.ukcoaching.org



Inspirational People Make a Difference

Inspirational People Make a Difference coaching is changing

original article on www.ukcoaching.org

We have all had inspirational people in our lives, whether it was our parents, siblings, or perhaps a teacher from school. Someone who understood you, knew how to motivate and support you, perhaps towards a goal they helped you identify.

To be able to replicate that same effect for everyone, every time would be an interesting opportunity right?

Understanding Purpose

UK Coaching adopted a broadening definition of coaching that extends our coaching family; one that embraces all roles with the intention to improve participants’ experience of sport and physical activity.

Whatever the roles we identify with: Champions, Leaders, Activators Coaches or Instructors; they are all coaching! Beyond this name the focus is, and should be firmly fixed on the purpose that role holds. This is the basic principle behind our approach to identify effective coaching behaviours, and develop a tool called the Coaching Behaviour Framework.

Coaching Is Changing

Creating new behaviours has been proven to be more effective when supported by other people, whether that’s family, friends, peers or professionals. If we are to create a more active nation, then having passionate, supported and inspired people coaching – in the right way, place, and time – is critical to realising this.

Coaching is changing, and we need to do the same by creating a service that meets the needs and motivations of participants; making engagement with sport and physical activity desirable and sticky.

In a world where fast and effective service is essential – when coaching is identified as part of the solution – this service needs to be simple to engage with if it is to be effective. Making it Easy Attractive Social and Timely.

Furthermore that offer needs to be developed quickly to meet market needs, at the time it’s required, and more importantly any offer needs to be scalable if we are to create the change we want to see.

Tomorrows World Today

Having the right people in the right place and time is essential. Great coaching improves a person’s experience of sport and physical activity. It has the power to change people’s lives!

Our future of coaching envisages people who can resonate with their audience and are able to meet the motivations of their participants. Creating an experience that inspires them to create and maintain a more active lifestyle, and supporting them to develop a positive relationship with sport and physical activity.

The Coaching Behaviours Framework does this by using the insight you hold to develop a Coaching Persona.

Coaching Personas

We have likened it to completing a jigsaw puzzle. The four corners that make up the beginning of a picture are:

People: having clarity on who you are seeking to engage is important; the framework aims to help map this effectively.
Purpose: understanding why you are using coaching to engage with a specific market is essential to creating a context to work from.
Place: adding considerations for the setting allows for additional needs to be considered with regards to specific skills or knowledge for an environment.
Practice: essentially what vehicle are you using to deliver your coaching. For example are you coaching through cricket, football or Zumba.
Considering these four corners the framework starts to build the persona based on the purpose identified for the coaching roles eg gngaging inactive people.

The Persona then considers three main characteristics and how they interconnect:

  1. Attributes
  2. Knowledge
  3. Behaviours

More than this framework aims to provide a guide to creating and developing learning and development pathway for the workforce in order to meet the characteristics identified within the coaching persona, as developed using insight from the audience you are aiming to engage through coaching.

An example of how these three elements interconnect is shown below:

Safety: “makes me feel safe and gives me confidence”

  • Attributes: Safety conscious/risk tolerant
  • Knowledge: Understanding of risk assessment processes. Experience of delivering the activities.
  • Behaviours: Creates and maintains a safe environment for their participants whilst managing both perceived and actual risks throughout the session.

The Coaching Behaviours Framework is designed to help complete the puzzle of identifying effective coaching behaviours.

This marks a step forward from the coach and participant modelling processes by taking this information to produce a meaningful set of coaching behaviours that depict “what effective looks like” for your coaches – aka a persona.

A coaching persona could be liken to person specification for a job however this isn’t a specific role. By prioritising the attributes of the person coaching in relation to their purpose, where are they able to identify what the right person for the right place and time could look like.

UK Coaching have developed four priority areas to develop personas within, they are;

  1. Engaging the Active
  2. Working with Children
  3. Maintaining an Active Lifestyle
  4. Developing Talent (first selective environment)

Next Steps

In order to establish the foundations for any proposed use of the coaching behaviours framework we are keen to work with partners to increase the depth of knowledge and to ensure that it is context specific. If you would be interested in working with us to progress this, please register your interest with the following contacts:

Home Countries
Peter Ezard

County Sports Partnerships
Dedicated Mail Box

Governing Bodies
Dedicated Mail Box

Higher Education Institutions
Vicky Putson

Core Cities / Local Partners/ Training Providers
Sian Foley

Craig Blain, Development Lead Officer: Physical Activity, UK Coaching