Level 1 Community Athletics Coach Resources

This page contains course materials relevant to coaches who have completed or are enrolled in the Level 1 Community Athletics Coach course. Coaches are strongly encouraged to bookmark this page as it will be periodically updated to ensure that you have access to the latest content to develop and consolidate your knowledge. 

Course checklist

Before the Course

On the Day of the Course

After the Course


key course resources

Lecture Slides

The Level 1 Community Athletics Coach lecture slides are available to download by clicking here. You are encouraged to have this document available to you on the day of the course to allow you to make notes and follow along with the material. 

Course Book

The Level 1 Community Athletics Coach Participant's Manual is designed to provide an overview of the fundamentals of Athletics coaching. It introduces techniques to deliver engaging and safe sessions that introduce the fundamental movement patterns of run, jump, and throw to beginner athletes. 

Participants are required to either print or save the manual to their personal device and have access to it on the day of their course. Upon completion of the course participants are encouraged to refer back to their manual regularly to supplement their learning. 


pre-course work

Click here to register for your Online Learning Modules (Includes Pre-Course work and Learning Material)

Prior to attending your Level 1 Community Athletics Coach course, you are required to complete two online courses available through your Online Learning Portal.

required tasks to be completed

  • Community Coaching General Principles course


You are no longer required to print out your certificates once these are completed.

POST-course work

After completion of your practical course, you are required to create and submit two (2) session plans through your Online Learning Portal.  Instructions, including your prescribed scenarios, and additional resources to help you design your session plans are available through the Learning Portal.

required tasks to be completed

  • session planning assignment


Click here to begin. 


The following session plans have been submitted by coaches who have successfully completed their Level 1 Community Athletics Coach accreditation and agreed to share their session plans. 

These scenarios are the intellectual property of their designers and shared with their permission. 

Scenario 2 by Dragan Music

Scenario 2 by Vanessa Busby

Email if you require any assistance completing your pre- or post- course assessment tasks.



REQUIRED reading

1) Bingisser, M. (2019). Thoughts on Progressing the Athlete, HMMR Media.
”Don’t ever forget why kids start playing sports, and why they stop. As coaches, this should be the starting point for us when designing a training session.

2) Richardson, B. (2018). Putting Theory into Practice: Using Games-Based Activities to Achieve Psychosocial Outcomes, Connected Coaches.
What is psychosocial coaching and what are the benefits for participants? This blog explains the theory before showcasing what psychosocial coaching looks like in practice.

3) Riewald, S. (2003). Strategies to Prevent Dropout from Youth Athletics, IAAF New Studies in Athletics, 18(3), 21-26.
This article examines the factors that contribute to continued participation and dropout from youth athletics and discusses eight strategies that can be implemented by a coach to prevent dropout. These include emphasising skill development and personal improvement, a great focus on team events such as relays in youth athletics, effectively incorporating fun into the training environment and including lots of variety in the training program. 

4) Merkel, D. (2013). Youth Sport: Positive and Negative Impact on Young Athletes, Journal of Sports Medicine, 4, 151-160.
Merkel studies the issues and risks of youth sport and asserts "that an emphasis on fun, while establishing a balance between physical fitness, psychological well-being and lifelong lessons for a health and active lifestyle are paramount for success." Merkel also provides important strategies for reducing the risk of injury of young athletes and preventing dropout from sport in teenagers. 

5) Kirkland, A. (2016). More Than Just Training: The Coach/Athlete Relationship, Trainingpeaks
..."Coaching is not just about designing an annual training plan or prescribing an individual session. It’s about building successful coach/athlete relationships, and that takes hard work. For such relationships to work requires mutually compatible philosophies and an ability to get inside of the head of the athlete. This way we can work out what they want and more importantly what they need. ‘Want’ and ‘need’ are not the same thing."

6) ASCA (2017). Resistance Training for Children and Youths: A Position Stand, Australian Strength and Conditioning Association.
"The purpose of the Position Stand is to develop a document that provides for as much clarity and guidance as possible to assist coaches in designing resistance training programs for children and youth at various stages throughout  their development. Hence this document develops several age-related sample programs, proposes age and function specific progressions in training, and describes the actual first hand experiences of highly trained  athletes who  have performed intense resistance training during their youth."

7) Frisch, J. (2019). How to Create a Warm-Up Inspired by Phsyical Education, Simplifaster.

The warm-up period is the perfect opportunity to start to introduce and teach many athletic skills. I believe the warm-up is the most important part of a training session in a youth athletic development training program.”

8) Frisch, J (2019). A Return to Play: Movement Training for Young Athletes, Simplifaster.
Aspiring athletes between the ages of 5 and 12 need to be exposed to and perfect a wide variety of movement challenges in order to develop effective coordination and movement skills. Proper coordination and mobility—and the joy in executing these in a free-flowing, creative environment—set the foundation for learning more complex sports skills later on.” This article includes videos of recommended movement activities to develop coordination and motor skills in young athletes using a fun, games-based approach.

Five top tips for coaching kids

When coaching kids for the first time, it is not uncommon to lack direction. It is a period when coaching beliefs, standards and philosophies are only starting to be established. To fast-track this process, Darren Wensor from coachingyoungathletes.com shares five of the top things that he learnt during his coaching journey.

Click here to read. 

The developing athlete

Champion hurdler, National Junior Coach and Coach Education Facilitator Lyn Foreman shares her philosophy for identifying junior talent and coaching the developing athlete. Click here to read.

Fundamental Movement Skills in Children and Adolescents

"The mastery of fundamental movement skills (FMS) has been purported as contributing to children’s physical, cognitive and social development and is thought to provide the foundation for an active lifestyle. Commonly developed in childhood and subsequently refined into context- and sport-specific skills, they include locomotor (e.g. running and hopping), manipulative or object control (e.g. catching and throwing) and stability (e.g. balancing and twisting) skills. The rationale for promoting the development of FMS in childhood relies on the existence of evidence on the current or future benefits associated with the acquisition of FMS proficiency." 

Click here to read more.

Developing Young Talent

This report summarises the main discussion points of Youth Development expert Wolfgang Killen at an IAAF Conference in Daegu, South Korea in 2016. Click here to read. 

Recommended online course

As athletics coaches, you are expected to be leaders within your community and ensure that your club has a positive attitude that supports the participation and improvement of all athletes, officials and fellow coaches. The PBTR - Let Kids be Kids online course is a great resource for learning effective practices in creating a positive club environment to best support the development of our young athletes. 

Click here to enrol in the online module. 

Global Drug Reference Online

This is a searchable database that provides information about the prohibited status of medications and/or the active ingredient based on the current World Anti-Doping Agency Prohibited List. It is expected that all Accredited Athletics Coaches understand how to access and use this resource.

Click here to access the Global Drug Reference Online Tool.

recommended equipment

Click here for a list of recommended equipment for Level 1 and IAAF Kids' Athletics coaches delivering run, jump, and throw sessions to young athletes.

online rules and officiating courses

All Accredited Athletics Coaches are able to enrol in the online officiating courses free of charge to develop or extend their knowledge of the rules of track and field. 

You are able to enrol in your chosen Level 1 Officiating courses through your Online Learning Portal

These are optional modules and are not required to gain your Level 1 Community Athletics Coach accreditation.


additional resources

The following articles are designed to extend your knowledge and may be of interest to those coaching or intending to coach beginner athletes. More content is able to be found at the Accredited Athletics Coach Resource Database

Athletics Australia does not endorse any of these articles, rather we provide them for your consideration and hope that you will find them interesting, informative and insightful. Coaches are encouraged to apply their own critical judgement in assessing what is published. 


Bledsoe, J. (2017). The Responsibility and Privilege of Coaching Youth Sports, CoachUp. 

Richardson, B. (2015). The Importance of Making your Sessions Fun and Engaging for 5-12 Year Olds, Connected Coaches. 


All Level 1 Community Athletics Coaches are strongly encouraged to be in touch with a mentor to guide their development. Athletics Coaches with an active and financial accreditation are welcome to be in touch with a Coach Mentor who appears on the National Coach Mentor Database. You are able to access the database by clicking here.

Online Courses, Guides, and Lectures

Competing with Integrity - by the University of Technology, Sydney in conjunction with the IOC. This course explores the importance of competing with integrity and what steps can be taken to avoid unethical practices. (Free registration required).

Is it Wise to Specialize? - by John O'Sullivan. This manual explores the effects of early sports specialization on the athletic performance of children and sustainable alternatives to promote participation and long-term success of young athletes. 

Level 1 Anti-Doping Course - by the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority. This course provides the opportunity to develop knowledge of anti-doping. It comprises six modules and an assessment and will take approximately 70 minutes. 

Fundamental Motor Skills: A Manual for Classroom Teachers - by the Department of Education, Victoria. This manual provides an overview of the importance of the Fundamental Motor Skills for sporting success and a small assortment of recommended activities to develop the skills for Primary-aged children. 

Yulunga: Traditional Indigenous Games - by Ken Edwards and Troy Meston in conjunction with the Australian Sports Commission. This collection of activities is a selection of games and activities from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander societies all around Australia.  It provides an opportunity to learn about, appreciate and experience aspects of Indigenous culture.

Training Kit Ideas - A suggested training kit for Level 1 Community Athletics and IAAF Kids’ Athletics coaches.

Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles 

Berg, W. (1992). Variable Practice: A Strategy for the Optimization of Skill Learning in Youth Athletics, IAAF New Studies in Athletics, 7(3), 45-50. 

Carron, A., & Bennett, B. (1977). Compatibility in the Coach-Athlete Dyad, American Alliance for Health, Physical Education and Recreation, 48(4), 671-679. 

Riewald, S. (2003). Strategies to Prevent Dropout from Youth Athletics, IAAF New Studies in Athletics, 18(3), 21-26. 

Schiffer, J. (2008). Children and Youths in Athletics, IAAF New Studies in Athletics, 23(3), 7-18.  

Witard, O., McGlory, C., Hamilton, L., & Phillips, S. (2016). Growing Older with Health and Vitality: A Nexus of Physical Activity, Exercise, and Nutrition, Biogerontology, 1-18. 


International Olympic Committee (2016). Coaching the Next Generation of Speed Skaters - From Athlete to Coach with Gold Medalist Christine Nesbitt, IOC.

Sports Coach UK (2016). What Makes your Session Unmissable for Young People, SportscoachUKTV. - Access the accompanying guide here

Sports Coach UK (2016). What Motivates Young People to be Active?, SportscoachUKTV.  - Access the accompanying guide here

Sports Coach UK (2016). How do you Coach Young People when Life Changes, SportscoachUKTV. - Access the accompanying guide here

White, E. (2016). Including Students with Vision Impairments in Physical Education, Statewide Vision Resource Centre. 

Website Articles

Bowley, C. (2016). The Athletic Triangle: Coach-Parent-Athlete Triad, Connected Coaches. 

Carmichael, S. (2015). How to Coach, According to 5 Great Sports Coaches, Harvard Business Review.

Fox, F. (2016). I Want This Year to be One When Women in Sport Were Heard, Swoop. 

Ludwig, Z. (2016). 4 Ways Yelling at Referees is Hurting our Children, Switching the Field. 

Noonan, K. (2013). The Real Reason Why Our Kids Quit Sport, News Ltd. 

Encourage children to participate in a variety of different unstructured (i.e. deliberate play) and structured age-appropriate sport-related activities and settings to develop a wide range of athletic and social skills and attributes that will encourage sustained sport participation and enjoyment
— Bergeron et al, 2015

Coaching manuals

Strength and conditioning for Beginning Athletes

This conditioning circuit will assist in the development of young athlete's strength, power, muscular endurance, cardiovascular endurance, co-ordination and flexibility. 

Click here to download. 

IAAF Introduction to Coaching

A holistic coaching guide to introduce to the key aspects of coaching track and field.

Click here to read the IAAF's 'Introduction to Coaching' Manual.

Games for Young Athletes

Click here to view a selection of games suitable for young athletes to develop the fundamental movement skills of run, jump and throw. This booklet contains an explanation of each activity and the evidence supporting its use for young athletes. 

Sports CONNECT - Inclusion in Sport

Designed by the Australian Sports Commission, the Inclusion in Sport Manual serves as an important tool in supporting coaches to deliver inclusive sessions that are accessible to all athletes. All Level 2 Intermediate Club coaches are encouraged to save the Inclusion in Sport PDF to their personal device and reflect on the content regularly to ensure they are delivering inclusive sessions in a manner that allows athletes under their care to achieve their best. 

Click here to access the manual. 

Athletics play Manual

The Athletics Play manual provides coaches with a range of games and drills designed to develop the fundamental movement skills of beginner athletes. Activities are designed to be fun, inclusive, safe, and engaging for all primary-aged athletes. The manual can be accessed by clicking here.

Disability education program - activity manual

Click here to access Activity Cards from the Disability Education Program. This includes a collection of inclusive activities that can be used to improve the fundamental movement skills of young athletes. 

IAAF Kids’ Athletics Session Plans (suitable for k-6)

The IAAF Kids’ Athletics program is an eight week program to develop young athlete’s fundamental movement skills.

Beginner 8-Week Program (K-2)
Intermediate 8-Week Program (3-4)
Advanced 8-Week Program (5-6)

Playing for life resources

The Playing for Life website provides coaches with activity cards that support delivery a program that focuses on getting children active and fostering a lifelong passion for sport. Coaches are able to access the website by following this link

run, jump, throw drills

Running Action

Controlled Standing Long Jump - Step Split Stop
Horizontal Jump with Walk Up - Continuous Jumps
Jumping Side to Side - Running Long Jump
Leaping - Vertical Jump

Under Arm Throw - Push Pass - Overhand Throw
One Handed Put - Slinging

Team Games
Shuttle Relay - Low Hurdle Obstacle - Leaping Activity/Relay

Athletic fundamentals videos

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