National Development Programme for Coaching Excellence

National Development Programme for Coaching Excellence

Aimed at coaches who sustain and grow participation in equestrian sports

The National Development Programme for Coaching Excellence is aimed at coaches working with adult and young people who participate in equestrian sport for competitive recreation motives. Coaches wanting to join this programme will be ambitious in improving their own performance and will already have success in getting more people participating in equestrian sport and retaining them in the sport by creating enjoyable coaching environments. This is a cross discipline programme involving; British Showjumping, British Dressage, British Eventing, The Pony Club, British Horse Society, RDA and Endurance GB.

Aims of the programme

To recognise the importance of  high performing coaches working with riders at grass roots  level

  • To recognise the importance of  high performing coaches working with riders at a recreational level
  • To use research and case studies from within and outside of equestrian sport to inform coaching practice
  • To support coaches to reflect and review their own performance and set personal development plans
  • To develop coaches with expertise that can influence coaching programmes that improve rider experiences.

What the programme will involve

  • An eight month programme with eight contact days
  • A mix of seminar and practical workshops
  • A group of up to 20 coaches to be involved from across a range of equestrian disciplines.
  • Starting in Autumn 2019
  • The cost for the programme is £500.of this cost 50% is paid through Sport England funding and 50% self-funded. This is paid in 2 installments
  • All places will be allocated following an interview process

Programme Content

The programme content is partly prescribed and partly guided by the wants and needs of the coaches involved. The following is a flavour of the type of content this programme delivers:

  • Use of video apps to support learning and plan coaching programmes
  • Motivation and positive behaviour change
  • Identifying coaching excellence;
  • Developing coaching excellence
  • Contemporary coaching tools and models
  • Performing under pressure, emotional resilience and mental toughness
  • Building self awareness in the coach; self-reflection and video analysis of own coaching
  • Developing a deeper understanding of personal values and philosophy  
  • Input from a highly regarded ‘participation’ coach from another sport
  • Developing a personal brand
  • Effective use of social media

While there is a spine to the learning programme coaches will be encouraged to shape the programme of delivery to fit with specific needs of the group.

This is a certificated programme of learning externally endorsed.

Who should apply?

  • Any coach who wants to improve their own performance and is particularly interested in supporting recreational competitors.
  • Coaches should already hold a BSCC Level 3 qualification (or equivalent)
  • Coaches who already demonstrate a degree of the high performing criteria listed below.


  • Ability to think innovatively and put ideas into action
  • Able to build strong relationships with riders and between riders
  • Able to establish and maintain a positive environment for riders
  • Aid the development of riders on an individual basis and are perceptive to their needs and wants
  • Build and sustain riders love of the sport and their involvement
  • Establish and maintain a culture of enjoyment
  • Show a commitment to on-going learning and personal development
  • Act as an ambassador for the sport and positively influence the development of programmes to improve rider and driver experiences
  • Understand participant pathways into and across equestrian sports.

What coaches have said about the programme

This course has helped me to take care of myself as a person and professional, re-adjust my work-life balance so I am able to give my best to the people I coach.' 

'The diversity of coaches on the programme was really helpful in helping to get a broad perspective on coaching, the time taken out to reflect and consider my future as a coach has been invaluable.” 

“The rapport and support from the group has been an essential part of the learning programme.”

How to apply

Applications for 2019/20 are now closed.
Interviews: wb 26th August 2019 & wb 2nd September 2019
Workshop days: 21st & 22nd October 2019,
                           10th & 11th December 2019
                            11th & 12th February 2020
                            21st & 22nd April 2020

Application to this programme is via the application form here. Please look closely at the criteria for the high-performing grassroots coach so that you are able to show how you currently demonstrate some of these.

For any enquiries please contact: