Hi Becky, how long have you been with us and what made you choose to do a Sports Coaching Apprenticeship with us?

I joined Elite Youth Sports at the end of June, and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my experience so far! Prior to this, I worked as a prison officer, where I was always on my feet and running around. However, I felt the need to transition into a role that could leverage my prior experience and qualifications, whilst incorporating my passion for sports. When I came across the Sports Coaching Apprenticeship opportunity, I applied straight away as it looked absolutely ideal for me.

Do you have any previous experience with Sports Coaching?

During secondary school, I completed GCSE PE, followed by a BTEC Sports qualification in sixth form. Additionally, I undertook a sports leadership course in secondary school and later returned there to work as a PE Technician.

Before joining Elite, I took on the role of a football coach for my local girls’ team, Wallingford and Crowmarsh Ladies. During my time as a football coach, I earned certifications in introduction to coaching football, emergency first aid in football and an FA DBS. Looking ahead, I plan to apply for my UEFA C license once applications reopen. I have a passion for football and I’m proud to be an FA qualified coach.

What’s the workload like for the level 4 Apprenticeship?

I consider myself fortunate to be doing the level 4 apprenticeship with Elite Youth Sports. I really enjoy the course and have zoom meetings weekly with my tutor. During these meetings we discuss the assigned tasks and generally assess my progress. Each assignment comes with its own deadline and although the timeframes vary, only one assignment is set at a time. This ensures a manageable workload, preventing any overwhelming situations, and maintains a consistent and smooth flow of tasks.

What skills or areas do you want to develop during this apprenticeship?

Throughout my apprenticeship, I aim to expand my understanding of other sports that I’m not as familiar with. While football remains my primary focus, I consistently seek opportunities to learn about different types of sports, discovering new drills and techniques every day.

Despite having two left feet, I have found joy in teaching dance this term and have noticed an improvement not only in the children I teach, but in myself as well. Embracing the challenge, I’ve been able to acquire a wealth of new knowledge and skills in the process, bettering myself with each lesson.

How do you encourage and support the children you teach day to day?

As a primary school sports coach, my approach to encouraging and supporting the children I teach is centered around fostering a positive and inclusive environment that nurtures both physical and personal development. I actively employ positive reinforcement techniques to acknowledge and create individual team achievements. I make a concerted effort to try and understand each child’s unique abilities, interests and challenges. This allows me to provide personalised feedback and guidance to create an environment where every child feels valued and supported.

What are some words of wisdom you would give to a new Sports Coaching Apprentice just starting out?

For a Sports Coaching Apprentice embarking on their journey, my advice would be to maintain self-belief and confidence. Stay open to continuous learning, as there’s truth in the saying “you learn something new every day”.