Assistant Coaching

Forums General General Assistant Coaching

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    • #12530
      Colbybr
      Member

      I am posting here for advice. I graduated as a D3 swimmer (you can guess which school from my name) and I have held a lifelong desire to be a swim coach. I am finding it maddeningly difficult to get involved with any college coaching. I would appreciate any advice from people on the forums in relation to the best way to get a foot in the door. If I cannot get a paid assistantship should I just offer my services out as a volunteer just to form a relationship. I would appreciate any proactive steps I could take towards this goal. Thank you.

    • #37618
      lirpa
      Member

      Volunteering isn’t a bad idea. I’d say no matter what, make sure you are coaching swimming at some level all the time: club, high school, summer league. By this you will gain experience, build your resume, and most importantly, meet a bunch of people in the coaching community. Try to work some camps as a counselor this summer, again, a great way to meet coaches.

      The tough part of this is, you will be making very little money in the meantime. Try to do this as you get a master’s degree, that is a big resume booster and you can live off loans and financial aid.

      It also helps if you are a female or a minority, so try to be one of those. Just kidding, of course.

    • #37619
      Colbybr
      Member

      Yeah luckily money is not too much of a concern for a while. I am definitely looking into that. Does it matter much what you pursue a graduate degree in or just that you have one?

    • #37620

      If you just want to get your foot in the door, volunteering is a great way to get started. Not many people turn down free help – certainly not at the D3 level. If you can get a master’s somewhere and volunteer in your spare time, that can be a start. What the masters is, really doesn’t matter much. My advice would be to try to get some experience recruiting as well as some time on deck. Recruiting experience and being able to talk about recruiting while in an interview will separate you from most candidates. Good luck.

    • #37621
      N Dynamite
      Member

      @Colbybr wrote:

      Does it matter much what you pursue a graduate degree in or just that you have one?

      I would think it depends on the level you’re trying to get in at (D1, 2, or 3). Since you mentioned D3 you should probably get something related to phys ed since you’ll most likely be asked to teach something if it’s a full time position. I dout there are many full time D3 coaches out there that don’t teach. There are a lot of GA positions out there – Westminster College just posted one on this site recently.

    • #37622
      JHU84
      Member

      you might also try some age group coaching and then move to the college ranks – There is a shortage of good assistant age group coaches down here.

    • #37623
      Colbybr
      Member

      Napoleon and JHU, thanks for the input.

      I was a history major in college. Currently I teach at a boarding school and coach swimming there as well. I am considering going for a masters in history simply because it would make the most sense with what I studied in college.

      As for age group coaching, I have heard that it is not much of an assett in terms of getting involved in college swimming.

      I would love to hear from anyone and everyone on this topic

    • #37624
      swim5599
      Member

      Well I am in the same position that you are in. If I could do it all over again I would have gone to get my masters at a place that needed at GA. That is the ideal way to get in. I was lucky enough to be an assistant for 3 years, but it has been tough ever since. I wish you the best of luck.

    • #37625
      Colbybr
      Member

      So I decided i am definitely moving to philadelphia. Does anyone know any college coaches in that area that they can recommend?

    • #37626
      h2ocoach13
      Member

      Philadelphia – PENN is a great place to start. With your NESCAC pedigree, Ivy is a great course to take. Excedptional students, strong swimmers, and no scholarships as distractions. You might contact Coach Schnurr and see what he might be able to do.

      Otherwise, a GA is the way to go . . . solid coaching experience in all facets of the field, free masters, and small stipend, a good start. Sport Pscyh or other areas of PE are probably best, but the MS is most important.

      Next, send out a resume to all reputable camps that you may be willing to travel to. You pick up some knowledge (other coach’s tricks), but mostly, you meet other coaches, which can help to know later on. Tip: bigger camps higher more REAL coaches. Smaller camps use more swimmers. Also, travelling is good, but if you stick closer to the geographic area that you are interested in the most, you are more likely to make local connections.

      In my opinion, a lowly college job is a better start than a higher-up club job, b/c of recruiting and administrative (budget, travel, equipment, & RECRUITING #1).

      Best of luck. Let us know when you get hired.

    • #37627
      Colbybr
      Member

      Thanks h2ocoach! I will definitely take your advice to heart. I am looking into the situation right now

    • #37628

      @h2ocoach13 wrote:

      Next, send out a resume to all reputable camps that you may be willing to travel to. You pick up some knowledge (other coach’s tricks), but mostly, you meet other coaches, which can help to know later on. Tip: bigger camps higher more REAL coaches. Smaller camps use more swimmers. Also, travelling is good, but if you stick closer to the geographic area that you are interested in the most, you are more likely to make local connections..

      This works well. I did the LongHorn swim camp back in 2001 and the staff that we had there, many of them have good coaching positions. Jason Mahowald (Univ. South Dakato), Colleen Murphy (Was the Truman St. Head coach, won 3 straight DII women nationals), Joel White (last time I checked he was the assistant coach at Notre Dame for women), and others who have been coaches. Look for the Standford camp and Indiana camps. Most of the top ones will pay atleast a part of you travel expenses and the pay is not to bad for the short time you are there.

      I would get as much deck time as possible. You might start off as an age-group coach, but learning to teach and getting references are important. You could volunteer with the senior swimmers to learn and get experience. Many of the college coaches I know have experience with age-group swimmers. Also, look for high school programs looking for coaches, you could get an assitant position or head coach position. Any head coaching position. You can make the jump from High School to college, (Lea Mauer- Standford- correct me if I am wrong on the name), Denise Dale (Minnesota). Again, deck time, in any capacity is important. It shows a passion for the sport and for coaching.

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