The re-designed Level 1 Award in Coaching Cycling qualification is now available to aspiring coaches. It is the first of a new style of delivery being implemented by British Cycling, called 'blended learning' – a combination of online learning and traditional face-to-face delivery methods.
This entry-level award is for people who are new to coaching and cycling, or those who are currently volunteering in their local cycling club and would like to get more involved.
The online component is delivered through British Cycling’s virtual learning environment, British Cycling Learning. This is followed by two tutor-led, face-to-face development and assessment days, which provide learners with the opportunity to put the knowledge into practice and get feedback on their coaching in an informal, enjoyable and supportive environment.
The certificate enables coaches to independently prepare for, deliver and review pre-prepared coaching sessions to groups of adults or children.
The course covers all of the basics of cycle coaching and qualifies coaches to deliver British Cycling Go-Ride Gears 1 and 2 activities in a variety of environments, including playing fields, tennis courts and car parks or even large indoor gymnasiums.
British Cycling’s Director of Coaching, Education and Development, John Mills, said: “The distinctly new feature of this award is the online component, which has been designed to allow aspiring coaches to learn at a time, location and pace that suits their own circumstances and existing knowledge. This is complemented by face-to-face days, where coaches receive support from tutors and their peers, and demonstrate what they have learnt.”
The online modules cover everything from coaching and reflection, to equipment and safe practice. Each module contains interactive and animated content, as well as videos and questions to engage the learners.
The course was piloted in September 2013 and had received excellent feedback from the 14 coaches from across the UK and Ireland who completed the qualification.
Emma Howarth is a volunteer at a Go-Ride club and attended the pilot course last year: “By taking the Level 1 course, it was a good introduction to coaching, having come from a non-cycling and non-coaching background.
"With the online components, I found it very useful to be able to go at my own pace, in my own time. I’ve been able to structure it around my family life and my work as well."
The course is run over two days, with about four weeks between day two and day two.