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UK Coaching opens FREE online mental health training for the nation’s coaches

May 18th 2020
Vicky Sartain

UK Coaching has today (18 May) announced that its Mental Health Awareness for Sport and Physical Activity online course will be offered free of charge until 31 August 2020.

UK Coaching has marked Mental Health Awareness Week (18-24 May) by joining forces with its awarding organisation 1st4sport, and partners Mind, the mental health charity, and Sport England to give the nation’s coaches a boost during these difficult times. Coaches can now access the Mental Health for Sport and Physical Activity online course for free!

Everyone who delivers coaching in a club, leisure centre or any other community sports and physical activity setting – such as coaches, fitness instructors, personal trainers, activators, sports administrators, or front of house staff or volunteers – will benefit from Mental Health for Sport and Physical Activity.  The online course is recognised to provide learners with 3 CPD (Continuing Professional Development) points as awarded by the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (CIMSPA).

Usually £18, the course is accessible via the organisation’s learning and development platform, ukcoaching.org and will remain free of charge until 31 August 2020. It’s a great opportunity for three million coaches to upskill their mental health literacy during Covid-19.

Coaches across the UK will be able to increase their knowledge of mental health, and confidence when applying the learning into their coaching practice.

Specifically, learners will be able to:

  • Welcome and support people living with mental health problems in their sport and physical activity sessions
  • Increase their knowledge of mental health problems
  • Apply the learning in their coaching practice
  • Make their club or organisation more inclusive

UK Coaching’s Director of Coaching Emma Atkins, said: “This year’s theme for Mental Health Awareness Week is kindness, and we wanted to honour that by coming together with our partners Mind and Sport England to take the financial burden of an essential piece of coach learning and development away from coaches.

“During this time, we are seeing more coaches using online learning, and this course is one that we know coaches enjoy and benefit from putting what they have learnt into practice. This is vital as we return to play over the coming months. Coaches are key conduits in helping communities to thrive and prosper. We will need them now more than ever before to help us get back running, mentally, as well as physically.”

Mind’s Head of Physical Activity Hayley Jarvis, said: “We’re really proud to be announcing this news during such a significant awareness week and at a time when more people than ever are in need of support for their mental health. We know that physical activity can play a vital role in improving and maintaining mental health, but that many people with mental health problems face additional barriers to getting active, whether inside or outdoors.

“Coaches and coaching organisations are in a fantastic position to make a real difference to the lives of people with mental health problems, so we are delighted that this online course is now freely available for the whole coaching community.”

Sport England’s Coaching Development Manager Sion Kitson, added:  “Considering the challenges we are all facing, it was right for us to come together to support coaches by removing the financial obstacle of accessing this essential course. Despite the lockdown, coaches have worked doubly hard to find amazing ways to keep people active. Hopefully, this small gesture will go a long way towards continuing their professional development.”

So don’t forget to sign up to UK Coaching’s free online Mental Health Awareness for Sport and Activity course before the offer ends on 31 August 2020.

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