New coaching framework

  • Dec 15,2021

Netball NI have identified the need for a new coaching framework to improve netball coaching within Northern Ireland, ultimately to raise participation numbers and achieve higher performance levels.   The framework will address the importance of ‘good coaching’ across Netball NI’s Participation Pathways and Segments, with learning content tailored to the segment population, moving away from the existing ‘one size fits all’ approach.


The first stage in the development of the new coaching framework was to understand our participants: their age/stage of development, their context and motivations to take part in netball.  This led to the creation of a diagram to show the existing participation pathways and segments in Northern Ireland and then defining the coaching segments where coaches operate.


The new coaching framework will:

  • Align the new qualifications and blended learning opportunities to netball coaching roles and varying coaching expertise operating from foundation to high performance.
  • Include new qualifications and a suite of continuous learning opportunities after certification with content that links closely to the capabilities of participants from foundation through to high performance.
  • Standardise the deployment and employment of coaches by introducing minimum standards which reflect the need to keep updated on coaching practice and important issues in sport and sports coaching.
  • Demonstrate the equal importance of each coaching context by recognising that expert coaches do and should operate in all segments.
  • Recognise and reward coaches through a new coach accreditation scheme.

The development of the new coaching framework was led by Netball NI's Head of Workforce over a twelve month process.  Consultation was held with a range of coaching and coach education experts from Sport Northern Ireland, the School of Sport at Ulster University and Steve McQuaid who previously worked as Head of Coaching at UK Coaching (formerly sports coach UK).  Just recently, the framework has been discussed with the new Coaches and Officials Working Group, this followed ratification from the Board of Netball NI.

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