Professional Development through Basketball Coaching

Basketball Coaching is one of the most rewarding roles a person can hold. There are many different facets of the role and when basketball coaching these are sometimes not always easily seen. One of these positives of being involved in the craft of basketball coaching is the ability for professional development to be undertaken. While the vast majority of basketball coaches are volunteers, this does not mean that good quality professional development cannot be undertaken or experienced resulting in the development of core skills that are easily transferable to many different professionals and situations.


Developing the confidence to talk in front of people is just one of the benefits of basketball coaching (Photo Source: Mister Leung)
Developing the confidence to talk in front of people is just one of the benefits of basketball coaching (Photo Source: Mister Leung)

One of the more obvious avenues for professional development when basketball coaching is accessing the variety of basketball specific courses. These courses come in a wide variety of shapes and with basketball being a global sport there are an ever growing list of different course to choose from. Some course are of a formal, and others, informal nature. To get the most out of basketball coaching it is suggested to coaches to try the sports specific introductory courses first and then as a coaches knowledge and skills increase look towards more formal training through Colleges and Universities.


When starting out in basketball coaching a skill which is constantly being challenged is critical thinking. It is true that no one single coaching style is perfect or completely right. Even the most experienced coaches are constantly tearing down and rebuilding their craft to try and find that extract inch of improved performance. The constantly seeking of knowledge demanded when basketball coaching by its nature exposes a coach to many different pieces of information will force a coach to develop their own philosophy and style of coaching. This process of development will be based around critical thinking. What worked? What didn’t? Why didn’t it work? How can it be improved? These are all questions commonly asked by a coach when reflecting on how to improve what they are doing.


There are a number of transferable skills which can be developed while basketball coaching which for many people will help in their day to day jobs. One of the more obvious skills is the ability to speak in front of people. Public speaking and talking to groups always ranks as one of the most daunting tasks people fear within their jobs. Basketball coaching really helps overcome this fear as it provides opportunity to talk in front of a group of individuals, and if taking part in camp environments this audience number can swell significantly.


Another core skill that is often overlooked in the range of talents needed, and therefore developed when basketball coaching is answering questions. The ability to field and respond to questions is a highly valued skill. The gift of being able to “think on ones feet” can be very highly sought after in sales, education and management roles or fields. When basketball coaching young or old there will always be questions because coaching is a human process and so people will always ask to clarify and seek further input for guidance.


In conclusion there are many different opportunities for professional development when basketball coaching. By thinking about the core skills needed by a coach in delivering a training session or game coaching, an individual can identify a range of professional development opportunities easily accessible to make a difference to their career. These skills can be included on a person’s Resume and highlighted when addressing selection criteria.

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Coach Riches has been working within the sport, business and education industries for many years. During this time he has built an extensive number of formal and informal qualifications. A firm believer in training and development designed to help people reach their full potential, relevant o their needs and functional to their industry environment.

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