If you want an athletic/coach career, you better start early. Athletes are both born and made in our highly competitive and sports crazy society. Most athletes begin their playing careers early – long before they reach high school. But can you have an athletic/coach career is you aren’t a top athlete?
Athletes Becoming Coaches
Many athletes turn to an athletic coaching career once their playing days are over. No matter when you reach your level of incompetence…most athletes don’t make it to the professional ranks…you can begin coaching when you hang up your sneakers or spikes or helmets.
Many athletes turn to an athletic/coach career because the sport is what they know and what they love. This is just another example of individuals creating a career out of their passion. Though many coaches begin their careers with extremely low pay (or, in some cases, no pay), they are doing what they love.
Many of these athletes become coaches even though they were not top athletes. Many professional coaches in football or basketball or baseball played at very small colleges, yet have made their way to the ranks of professional coaches. It is difficult for someone who only played high school sports to become a pro coach, but they can certainly become high school or even college coaches.
Having a Athletic/Coach Career Without Being a Top Athlete
Let’s say you were only good enough for high school sports, or perhaps you were good enough for some level of college sports but just didn’t have the time to spend. College sports require a incredible level of time commitment these days – much more than they did 30 or 40 years ago. Many people don’t want or can’t commit to all that time. They may need the time to study or to work to pay for college. How do you become an athletic coach if this describes you?
Jobs For Athletic Coaches
According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, coaches and scouts held approximately 243,000 jobs in 2010. Most of these coaches work for educational institutions – high schools and colleges. A small percentage work for professional teams and community organizations. The Bureau of Labor Statistics also estimates that jobs for coaches will increase more rapidly than the average for all occupations through 2022.
What Do You Need to Have an Athletic/Coach Career?
High school coaches are often teachers and this requires you to have a bachelor’s degree and a teaching credential. Coaches who work for colleges also need a bachelor’s degree and sometimes a higher level degree. Some of the best degrees for college coaches include:
- Exercise and sports science
- Physical education
- Sports medicine
- Sports management
Coaches, especially those who work for public educations, often need certification. This may require CPR training and perhaps course work and training in sports safety and fundamentals.
Beyond the actual training and educational requirements, coaches need to be leaders who can have a positive influence on the players they coach. Whether you are coaching a third-grade basketball team or a Division I college baseball team, you need to be a positive leader for everyone on the team.
Coaches Usually Start at the Bottom
Unless you are someone with a name or a retired superstar, you will most likely begin your coaching career as an assistant coach. This is where you learn the fundamentals of real-life coaching and you show everyone involved your extraordinary work ethic. Those who absorb the most information, work the hardest, and develop the best leadership skills, will have a successful athletic/coach career.
Writing Team, Coaches Training Blog Community