Empire’s Strength & Conditioning Qualification

21st September 2021

In May 2021, Bob Smith from Gloucestershire Cricket Club delivered a 6-week Strength and Conditioning (S&C) course to 10 young people. The course aimed to further support the young people who had either finished their 20-week Training with Champions programme or those nearing completion.

Bob used his expertise in S&C to coach the young people in how to complete complex exercises and how to coach the techniques themselves. In the process, Bob also weaved in personal development points which were used in the exercise process but are also transferable to life outside of coaching. The group started off as 10 but naturally a couple dropped off and 7 young people completed the course.

The young people who were invited to the group sessions were selected as they have previously expressed an interest in a future career in sports.

The course began with Bob coaching the young people through the exercises, allowing them to understand the processes, and then he taught the young people how to coach them. Coaching was new skill for most of these young people, and to be given 6-weeks to understand the coaching process, key coaching points and the ability to understand how to set up an effective circuit, was going to be an ambitious task.

For he final week of the course, staff from Gloucestershire Cricket visited the gym. Acting as athletes they were coached through a S&C circuit by the young people. Having the young people coach external athletes and not their peers was a real test for them but was great for their development.

Theo who attended the course is currently out of education as is approaching the end of school life, with the aim of attending college to take his A-levels. Theo has been out of a group environment for a year and has not mixed in large groups with other people in this time. These sessions involved paired and group work which was a great experience for Theo before he starts college in September, where he will be expected to complete group work again. The course included personal development points such as how to greet and communicate effectively with an athlete you would be coaching. Whilst not attending school Theo missed the opportunity to practice these key life skills – the course provided an opportunity to grow in confidence ahead of the new academic year.

‘Bob has helped me gain a better understanding of how to coach someone effectively and I enjoy coming here. The coaches are very helpful in helping me achieve the best version of me’. 

Theo

Lewis has been engaging well with his boxing sessions, attending for 4 hours a week. Lewis expressed his interest in sport, staying healthy and being active. Lewis said he struggles with a classroom environment and finds this environment tough to learn in. We felt inviting Lewis to this course would benefit him through working in a group setting, learning new skills which he could take into a future career and showing him that he can succeed at what he sets out to do. Lewis was not too sure whether this course would be beneficial to him but pushed himself and came along to give it a go nonetheless. Attending the course to learn in his own spare time was already a huge progression on Lewis’s part. Lewis thrived in this environment and was really keen to learn from Bob.

‘ Lewis was great, always willing to learn and listen. When he coaches he takes care with his instructions and has a great attitude’.

Bob, Strength & Conditioning Coach

Missy, 16, has been engaging well with her EFC sessions and has signed up to study the BTEC level 3 Sport and Fitness course through EFC and Bristol Rovers. Missy was referred to EFC to help with the challenges of growing up. Since completing the 20 week programme, her positive attitude towards the programme drove her to the S&C programme. This group setting was perfect for Missy to engage with others, further improving her communication. Missy was shy at first and struggled to mingle with the rest of the group. Bob was very positive and encouraging with Missy which she reacted well to. As the weeks went on Missy was visibly more confident with her coaching and communicating with the other young people.

Since the sessions, Missy has since started her BTEC Sports Coaching qualification with EFC. Missy had the confidence to apply for the course on her own and was not put off by the fear of failure – a great attribute which she developed at EFC. Missy has shown great maturity to have the ability to complete the application process with little support. Since attending EFC, Missy has gained 2 qualifications, a job and now started further education.

On completion of the course, the young people gained the Empire Fighting Chance Strength & Conditioning AQA award. As well as learning life skills and a practical knowledge of the subject, this qualification will look great on the CV’s of young people and will hopefully give them further drive to achieve more qualifications.