- Help riders develop their cycling skills
- You'll need to be an excellent motivator and have great communication and tactical skills
- This work is often done part time alongside other roles, but there are some full time positions available
If you're working with young riders as a Cycling coach in schools and community groups, you could be planning fun, engaging coaching activities, sessions and programmes in a safe environment, helping riders to improve their riding technique, or working with riders, schools, community groups and sports organisations to promote the sport.
If you're working with riders involved in the competitive side of the sport, you could be working on developing more advanced riding techniques and tactics, designing training programmes, supporting riders at races and competitions, maintaining records of rider performance, advising on how lifestyle choices can affect performance, mentoring other coaches, working with experts including sports scientists, nutritionists, physiotherapists and programme managers, marketing and promoting your coaching services, if you're self-employed and combining your coaching with other work to earn money.
If you're working with young riders as a cycling coach in schools and community groups, you could be:
- Planning fun, engaging coaching activities, sessions and programmes in a safe environment
- Helping riders to improve their riding technique
- Working with riders, schools, community groups and sports organisations to promote the sport
If you're working with riders involved in the competitive side of the sport, you could be:
- Working on developing more advanced riding techniques and tactics
- Designing training programmes
- Supporting riders at races and competitions
- Maintaining records of rider performance
- Advising on how lifestyle choices can affect performance
- Mentoring other coaches
- Working with experts including sports scientists, nutritionists, physiotherapists and programme managers
- Marketing and promoting your coaching services, if you're self-employed
- Combining your coaching with other work to earn money
You'll often combine your coaching with other work. You might, for example, coach for two evenings during the week and attend events and races at the weekend. If you're a full-time coach you'll usually work very long and unsocial hours, especially at a higher level.
Competitions and matches can take place all over the UK and sometimes abroad, which could mean you spend some time away from home. You could work for British Cycling as a development coach, introducing people to cycling, or working on talent programmes to support cyclists. You could work as a coach for a local authority or organisation with an interest in sports development at places like BMX tracks, mountain bike trail centres or indoor cycling tracks.
This role would be ideal for someone with the ability to motivate others, excellent communication skills and the ability to adapt to different environments and ability groups.
You'll need to be a skilled cyclist with insurance, pass enhanced background checks, have a first-aid certificate and be over 18 years of age.
There is no set entry route to become a professional cycle coach but getting a foundation degree, higher national diploma or degree in a sports-related subject like sports science could give you an advantage. If you're a competitive cyclist, you could do a foundation degree in cycling performance through Writtle University College.
You can also work towards this role by starting with an intermediate apprenticeship as a community activator coach. This apprenticeship is recognised by the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (CIMSPA).
You can do training through a professional body like British Cycling, who offer qualifications in coaching. For example Level 1 Award in Coaching Cycling - beginner's qualification, Level 2 Certificate in Coaching Cycling - if you have some coaching experience and Level 3 Certificate in Coaching Cycling - if you want to work with individual riders and plan detailed training programmes. Bursaries or grants may be available to help you train as a cycling coach.
You can develop your coaching skills through volunteering. British Cycling has details on how you can get involved with your local club, coaching and cycling events. There are opportunities in road and track racing, BMX and mountain biking.
You could become a self-employed coach and design training programmes for amateur riders. You could also become a cycle trainer through the Bikeability scheme, teaching young people how to cycle safety on roads. If you work with young people, you could move into sports development or youth work.
With experience, you could transfer your skills and abilities to other areas of the sports industry.