Workforce & Training FAQ's

Workforce & Training

QWhy are Swim England looking to change the coaching qualifications and what effect will it have?

A – Swim England has a long tradition of providing quality training for coaches working in all aquatic disciplines within our sport. In 2007 the decision was made to adopt the common coaching units that were developed for use across all sports. Feedback has shown that not all of these were appropriate for the requirements of coaching within our sector. This has led to a concern that we are no longer providing relevant and consistent training for coaches at all levels across all aquatic disciplines, despite the best efforts of skilled tutors. 

Swim England has made the decision, along with the backing from those working at the elite end of the sport, to move to an independent system of certification. These will be known as ASA Coaching Certificates which clearly indicate the level the coach should be operating at ie Assistant Coach, Club Coach, Senior Coach etc. These new coaching certificates will be designed by Swim England as the national governing body for swimming, and developed to meet the needs of the sport by coaching experts, working in partnership with educational specialists. The aim will be to ensure the coaching courses have sufficient time and content to develop skilled coaches at all levels, with the ultimate goal of increasing the number of athletes capable of winning medals on the world stage.

The Institute of Swimming (IoS), as a wholly owned subsidiary of Swim England, will deliver the courses using the expertise of an updated tutor workforce supported, where appropriate, by our elite coaches and talent team to ensure a consistent approach to the ongoing education and development of our coaching workforce. These new certificates will replace the existing qualifications starting with coaching swimming taking effect from 1 October 2016. This will be followed by coaching diving, synchronised swimming and water polo from 1 January 2017.

The IoS have now given a further update and included all of the information, as well as some frequently asked questions, in the Coaching FAQ's document.

1.       As a coach will this mean I will have to take another course?
No any previous qualifications will remain valid.


2.       Why is the IoS the only organisation able to deliver the course? 
The IoS is a wholly owned subsidiary company of the ASA. The ASA has chosen to keep delivery of the new endorsed certificates within the organisation.


3.       As a learner will these new certificates cost more to complete? 
We don’t anticipate any increase in costs. If anything, we hope to see a decrease. We will have a better understanding once the writing of the new certificates is complete.


4.       Will the new certificates still take the same time to complete?
We will be able to provide more detail around this in the next couple of months. We don’t anticipate an increase in delivery time, if possible we will seek a reduction. We will also work to ensure a blended (face-to-face and online learning) option is created and provided by the IoS.


5.       I need a coaching course before 1 October 2016, can I still access one?
Yes, the current qualifications will continue to be available until the replacement certificates commence delivery. Therefore the current Coaching Swimming qualification will be available until 30 September 2016 and current Discipline qualifications will be available until 31 December 2016.


6.       As a current coaching tutor for the ASA will I need to remain licensed to tutor these new coaching certificates? 
Yes all tutors involved in the delivery and assessment of these new coaching certificates will be required to hold an ASA tutor/assessor licence.



Q What is the recommended ratios for teaching/coaching sessions in the pool in order to ensure a safe environment?

APlease refer to the ‘Safe Supervision’ document, put together by tSwim England and other leading organisations in the sport.