The ARA announced it this week.
The two year accelerated Apprenticeship Programme will build on the knowledge and experience gained to create a bespoke development pathway towards coaching excellence for each participant, based on the needs of each coach and their sport.
Tim Foster and Nick Strange were in the first intake of the earlier Elite Coach programme – Nick still coached U23s in the GB System but Tim is head coach of Switzerland – and so lost to the UK, hopefully temporarily.
The 12 Apprentices will benefit from ‘on the job’ training by working alongside a ‘Master Coach’ from within their sport while also having access to a Mentor. This will be complimented by a workshop programme, delivered by experts in coaching, non-technical coaching skills, sport science and sports medicine.
Rowperfect salutes the addition of mentoring to the programme, because that can be a great way to help put theory into practical training. You might want to consider adding this to your club coaching programme.
But the mentor must be a fabulous teacher in their own right and with the right balance of vision and humility such that they can step back and let the trainee make mistakes and deliver programmes in their own manner. The trust of the senior coach to let the trainee into their personal knowledge-store of experience is vital. Feeling unthreatened by the advances of a younger coach is also important otherwise the senior coach will stop or slow their participation and gift of knowledge.
Mark Earnshaw's Master Coach Mentor, Jurgen Grobler, is yet to be confirmed in this role.