If you want to become a better swim coach, we’ve got your back. Here are a few characteristics that separate the best from the rest!
Be Meticulous and Organized
When you teach swimming, there’s a lot of ground to cover. Especially if you work with many students of different ages and abilities. But what do most of these students have in common? Coaches that have helped them get to where they are by instilling the importance of practice, clear goals, and attention to detail. And this isn’t done through telling, it’s done through showing.
A swim coach who turns up to practice unprepared and without a goal for their students isn’t the best role model. It can look like you don’t care, and your class is likely to follow your example. Students thrive when their coach shows up prepared and takes their development seriously. So plan not only sessions weeks ahead but sessions around the allotted timeframe, pool size, equipment, and the areas of improvement for your swimmers.
Working on your communication skills is essential to teaching swimming to a range of ages and abilities. You need to be able to describe techniques to your students so that they’ll be able to understand even if they’ve never tried them before. There’s a temptation to look like the biggest swimming expert by using complex phrases, but talking in plain English will get the best out of your swimmers.
Being a great motivator is also part of your communication skills. Don’t be a swim coach who simply instructs rather than leads. Barking out orders to your swimmers can be disheartening and is unlikely to make them feel empowered. Your students should feel like everything they do in the pool has a distinct and clear benefit. Reinforce this by providing praise and encouragement.
Teach and Inspire Beyond the Pool
The best swim coaches know that a child or teen’s success is beyond what happens at the meet. Inspire your team to be better people after they leave competitions with pep talks on leadership, work ethic, academic success, or being a better person. Swimming can teach a lot of life lessons, so utilize that. Connecting your team to something beyond the sport of swimming helps them see the bigger picture as well as connect the swimmers to each other. This will inspire each swimmer to perform their best not just for themselves, but for the entire team.
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Be Knowledgeable and Willing to Improve
To be the best, your students have to learn from the best. To be a better swim coach, you need to have an in-depth understanding of the sport as well as an unbridled level of passion. However, above all, you need to be determined to keep improving.
Taking a coach certification course is a great way to broaden your skillset. At Summer League Swimming, we provide a swimming coach certification that contains specific tips and techniques from leading researchers in the sport. Coaches who complete the course are immediately equipped with the tools needed to positively impact their swimmers.
Summer League Swimming is dedicated to helping create better swim coaches. This means offering training for coaches so they can enhance their skills and be the best possible version of themselves. No matter where you are in the United States, let us help you reach your full potential!