The primary job of a sports instructor or coach is to provide training to the athletes. He/she will be assisting them in skills development and will ensure fitness and outstanding performance during peak times like tournaments, competitions, trials, qualifying events and matches.
There is a very subtle difference between a sports instructor and a sports coach and they are often used interchangeably, to define the position. However, the basic variance between the two is summed up in the following statement. While the former provides practical and theoretical instructions in a particular sport or help the athletes in maintaining their general fitness and health, the latter identifies and nurtures talented athletes.
The prospective employers for this profession include professional, semi-professional and amateur sports clubs, universities and colleges, sports development organizations, local authorities, fitness centers and gyms, sports administration bodies and so on.
The competitive sport has an industry worldwide, providing excellent employment opportunities. Several reputed coaches have established records of grooming the potential winners and winning trophies and competitions.
There are professional coaches who have developed their expertise in fields like, football, cricket, athletics, tennis and other popular sports. Their income is often equivalent to the players whom they train. They also enjoy the competence of choosing a workplace of their choice across the globe.
A sports instructor or a coach is responsible for gauging the performance of his athletes under his expert direction. He will also analyze the weaknesses or flaws of the opponents of his team or player. It will be his responsibility to develop tactics and the training activities.
He will also be developing new skills of his athletes and will prepare them mentally for participating in the competitions. He also needs to make liaison with the other sports professionals to ensure that the players attain optimal fitness when required.
The earnings of a sports instructor or coach vary considerably based on the sport he is involved with and the team or player being coached. For instance, a coach of the Wimbledon champion will command a vastly bigger amount compared to the swimming instructor of the tadpole class in a municipal pool.
The job of a sports coach is not a typical 9 to 5, Monday to Friday work. According to the standard norms, they start out early in the morning, especially during the ‘playing season’. The training sessions often start at 6, or even earlier in the morning and go on till around 10 am.
Many a times, additional sessions are held for training the athletes and they are generally held in the evenings, between 3 and 6 pm. Generally, competitions and matches are scheduled during the weekends, in the evenings to get the maximum viewership.
Traveling is a part of the sports instructor’s or coach’s job. He needs to travel outside his hometown or often his state or country to train and guide the team at the venue, where the sport will take place. International travel happens mainly during major tournaments and events.
As mentioned, there are several job opportunities in this field – high schools, athletic leagues, adult education programs, health clubs, private industry etc. Those having the most experience, education and training will be eligible for the best employment opportunities in the market. If you have the requisite skills, expertise and the dedication, it is an avenue worth exploring!