How you can get into coaching

“I’m not directly involved in athletics or running right now. But I would love to help out with coaching in a club.”

That’s great to hear. Head on over to our Clubfinder to look for clubs near you, most will be delighted to hear from enthusiastic types just like you.

Have a chat to a few clubs, see which suits you best, get yourself booked on to a course and get involved.

“I just want to get cracking, get a qualification and get involved. Can you tell me how?”

Wow, it’s brilliant to hear that you’re eager. You can book yourself straight on a course to get your qualification. Once you have done that you can either find a local athletics or running club where you can contribute or, depending on what you want to do, you could set up your own RunTogether group.

“I’m connected to a club at the moment, and would like to give coaching a go.”

We’re very much liking the sound of that, and we’re confident the club will too. They’re likely to be very happy for you to take a course, get qualified and be involved in their coaching activities.

Many clubs offer practical help for people taking their first steps into coaching, and this can include subsidising or paying course fees.

Which qualification should I take?

Coaching Assistant

Ideal for becoming involved in coaching track and field athletics, including endurance events on the track.*

The Coaching Assistant qualification provides you with an introduction to coaching athletics via a range of run, jump and throwing skills and activities. When you have completed the course and received your Coaching Assistant licence you will be assisting in the delivery of athletics coaching sessions under the supervision of a qualified Coach. For participants under 18 years of age, this will mean ‘direct’ supervision, whereas for 18 years + this will be ‘indirect’ supervision.

Leadership in Running Fitness

Ideal for leading groups of recreational or beginner runners, including as part of an affiliated running or athletics club, or as part of a RunTogether Group.*

The Leadership in Running Fitness course is designed to prepare you to provide a safe and enjoyable running experience for young people over 12 years of age and adults of any ability, size or shape. This qualification will provide you with insurance to lead a group within the limits of the course content.

Are there other options?

Leading Athletics

This workshop is ideal for anyone wishing to lead athletic activities in support of a Coaching Assistant or Athletics Coach in an athletics or running club.

While not a formal qualification, the Leading Athletics workshop is aimed at individuals who are interested in an introduction to the skills needed in leading athletics activities for young athletes.

*Remember – to have a valid licence you will also need a DBS check. We’ve got an online process in place to make that as simple as possible – click here to find out more

The difference between clubs and groups

England Athletics has more than 1300 affiliated clubs (as well as 320 other affiliated organisations) covering track and field, road running, fell, hill, trail and cross country. There are a very wide range of clubs including many which have activities focused on recreational runners.

By being affiliated to England Athletics clubs enjoy benefits including club insurance, coach development opportunities, volunteer training, being able to compete in competitions under UKA rules and welfare support.

As well as these affiliated clubs we also have RunTogether groups which provide recreational group-based running opportunity with over 75,000 members. These are led by qualified leaders, sometimes as part of an affiliated club, and you can click here to find out more about setting up a RunTogether Group.