More Than a Coach
Coaches teach the skills, attitude, values and spirit that define a true athlete. They are role models and character-builders both on and off the field of play.
Special Olympics coaches go even further—they support athletes with intellectual disabilities to discover their own strengths and abilities. They encourage them and challenge them to build upon those strengths and improve every day.
As a Special Olympics coach, you bring enthusiasm, commitment and a positive attitude to each practice, event and competition. You will enrich the lives of your athletes in many life-changing ways. The skills and confidence that an athlete learns through sports have a long and lasting effect. They can help them succeed in school, get a job and find confidence in social situations and in life.
Coaches also get a lot in return. They get to know athletes who inspire—athletes who are brave and determined, despite the odds against them. Coaches become more than teachers, mentors and role models—they are seen as leaders in the community.
Special Olympics is committed to developing and supporting our coaches to be the best coach they can be. This benefits both coaches and their athletes. Our coaches strive to create a supportive, challenging and engaging learning environment for all athletes, regardless of their ability level. They encourage and challenge their athletes to develop their sport skills, techniques, extend their tactical awareness and improve their physical and mental fitness.
Our coach education programs and resources help our coaches to recognize each athlete’s potential—enabling them to provide the best environment to help each athlete reach—or exceed—their personal best.
We partner with sports organizations and federations to support our coaches to access the best coaching resources and knowledge.
Become a Coach
Who are our coaches? Could you be a Special Olympics coach?
Our coaches come from all walks of life. They are parents, siblings, friends, teachers, sport professionals and more. Whoever you are and whatever your experience, there are learning opportunities available for you. These courses can support you to make a meaningful and positive impact in the lives of people with ID as a coach or an assistant coach.
You will join a global community of over half a million coaches. Our coaches share a common passion and commitment to provide people with ID with the opportunity to develop as athletes and as people through the power of sport.
Start the process of becoming a Special Olympics coach by getting in touch with the Special Olympics office nearest you.
Online Learning Portal: Coach Education
Special Olympics Online Learning Portal hosts a range of free, interactive online learning courses designed especially to introduce aspiring Special Olympics coaches to the coaching world. Creating an account on the online learning portal is FREE and simple. In just a few minutes, you will have a library of learning at the click of a button. Follow the links below to learn how to create your account and what learning is available.