Assistant coach course

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Martial Arts Queensland Assistant Coaching 

The aim of this course is to teach you your role as an Assistant Coach on the mat at Martial Arts Queensland. 


What is an assistant coach? (AC)

An Assistant Coach (AC) allows the Coach (C) to concentrate on running the class by assuming specific responsibilities as delegated by the C. The AC will often work more closely with individual students than the C.   The AC will have the responsibility of helping students develop specific sets of skills. For example, the assistant coach may work with students on proper techniques for kicking, punching, doing push-ups and tying belts, bowing in and other martial arts fundamentals.


Why have an Assistant Coach? 

Our parents at MAQLD have praised our instructors for the level of service we provide our students.   The AC lifts the service levels by providing one-on-one instruction and will improve techniques, confidence and fundamentals for new students.   This should enhance retention as well as making the session more fun as the new student will learn new stuff along the way more effectively. The AC allows the C to be more focused and deliver the message and class more effectively.


What or who is your customer?

A customer (sometimes known as the student or their parents) is the recipient of our service.

In the world of customer service customers are categorised more often into two classes:

  • An external customer of an oorganisationis a customer who is not directly connected to that oorganisation At MAQLD it is both the customer and/or the parent/caregiver who pays for the service.
  • An internal customer is a customer who is directly connected to an oorganisation and is usually internal to the organization. Internal customers at MAQLD are the employees.

REMEMBER: We as an organization provide a service to our customers who intern expect a level of service.

OUR AIM:  to exceed our customer expectations by going over and above(create raving fans).

How Does an AC go over and above?

Always have a smile on your face, listen to the customer, provide a professional service, be aware of the customer needs.

Why do children do Martial Arts? 

  1. To have fun
  2. To make friends
  3. To increase confidence, self esteem, respect, fitness (this is what the parents want)
  4. To learn new skills
  5. To be challenged
  6. To feel good

Each of these objectives can be achieved if we remember that children sport is for the children and we must keep in mind their needs and abilities.


Duties of the Assistant Coach 

  1. Assist with having the class roll ready for the C.
  2. If requested by the C check why students not on the class list are in that class.
  3. Assume the coach’s role if they are indisposed.
  4. Assist individual students with technique.
  5. Have fun with the students. (not disturbing the class)
  6. Maintain order during coach’s explanations.
  7. Stay active on the mat or no chatting to other staff.
  8. Walk around helping kids with techniques while coach is indisposed.
  9. Advise the C if an injury has occurred to a student that the C may not be aware of.
  10. Greet the student and parents when they arrive and always have a smile on your face.

When on the mat your role is to be as active as possible with the students, you will move from student to students helping them with technique and motivating/praising them.


Praising Machine 

  1. Praise the student, use their name, and practice the coach’s alphabet.
  2. Praise, look them in the eyes and use name.
  3. Praise, look them in the eyes, use name and make contact.
  4. Use a different word, look them in the eyes, use name and make contact.


Praising Alphabet challenge 

  • Awesome, amazing, Astonishing
  • Brilliant, Beautiful
  • Cool, crazy
  • Dynamite, Devastating, Dazzling, Dame that was good

And so on you can come up with your own.

What to do when a student challenges your authority?

In some instances, students act rudely to test the instructor, to flex their own intellectual muscle, or to show off to classmates. This is most likely to happen if the instructor’s authority is in question, for example, if s/he is timid or does not seem in command. Some students may also seek to challenge the authority of (or outright bully) particular categories of instructors, for example young and timid instructors.   One technique to deal with this situation is to look at the student and ask in a strong voice, “What is wrong today”? “Why are you acting this way”?

AC must advise the C of unacceptable behaviour.


Teach by example

Attitude and etiquette are almost entirely taught by example, children develop their character by copying adults particularly the ones they admire and the coach is an important role model. You will always be under scrutiny by the parents and the adults on how you behave, enthusiastic coach enthusiastic students.


What Children want from AC is: 

  • Know there name
  • Care about them
  • Be patient
  • Be energetic
  • Be enthusiastic
  • Have good knowledge of the martial arts
  • Have a sense of humor
  • Engage with them
  • Help them and
  • Praise them (for technique or effort)
  • Show self confidence and control



From a timing perspective, it is a good idea to spend about 1-2 minutes per student if you can.   You should definitely work with new students in any class and this might include showing them how to do push-ups, sit-ups and/or fundamental techniques. Never over complicate techniques and remember to praise the students for their efforts when working with them. Concentrate on being positive and encourage the student.


Buddy System

If possible, connect a new student with a “buddy” in the class who can show basic techniques, motivate and encourage. Make sure the experienced student is OK with this and would be a good role model for new students. When pairing up students make sure that there is not a big size discrepancy. If the buddy student is a higher rank let the student know that they were selected because of their commitment dedication and ability to take on the challenge.


Fear is a dangerous motivator 

Authoritarian coaches are rarely a successful child coach, fear only works at elite levels. For the average 7 year old a threatening situation will stop him so much it will be impossible for him to confidently attempt a new task. Teach children enthusiasm for learning new tasks and you will develop their skills in an unthreatening, successful environment.


Set your own standards 

The most important way to tech attitude is by example, bow when leaving the mat, thank students who help, congratulate students when they succeed and make sure other students see you doing this.


Blue Card

A blue card is a card issued by the Public Safety Business Agency and indicates that a person is eligible to work with children and young people in Queensland. A Blue card is a legal requirement to ensure the safety of children and young adults.

Health and Safety 

Health and Safety is the responsibility of both the AC and C. The C takes overall responsibility, however if the AC is aware of an issue that would create an unsafe environment he has an obligation to bring it to the attention of the C, Manager or Academy Director.


How to be a Good Uke 

An Uke is a receiver of technique. As an AC it is imperative to have the same understanding as the C when it comes to demonstrations and drills. This will ensure that the customer/student gets to see the technique done in a professional manner and injuries do not occur.


Communication announcements and flyers 

If flyers are being handed out in class the C will explain what the flyer is about while the AC walks between the ranks handing it out to each student.

AC’s need to understand the content of the flyers, this will enable them to answer any questions relating to the flyer/communication. When an AC is not sure about the content of a flyer or communication they are to clarify with the C.

Instruction of Techniques 

An AC has a responsibility to assist students with their techniques, however if a student has a question regarding techniques that is challenging the AC needs to readdress the question to the C. If the C is busy with another group ask the students to continue training and advise them that you will get the C to come across and discuss it further.


NB:      Do not coach techniques to students above your Rank


Social Styles


SOCIAL STYLE is the most effective communication skill which improves effectiveness in leadership, management of students and fellow employees. With Social Styles you can learn to predict the behaviour of others and then adjust yours accordingly to be more effective.


Analyse patterns and characteristics

Determine the style of others

Assess your own style

Plan to accommodate others needs

Treat others as they want to be treated




Individuals are all different, but can be put in four groups namely:


DRIVER           or Eagle


AMIABLE         or Dove

EXPRESSIVE    or Peacock




Styles may be very strong in one area or a combination of two styles. An idea of behaviour and a brief description of each style would be:


Driver or Eagle                      THE CONTROL SPECIALIST



  • Is obsessed by a compulsion to perform.
  • Has a passion for knowledge and is constantly searching to answer the ”why s” of life.
  • Works at a fast and decisive pace (idleness drives them crazy.
  • Likes to be in charge, seek productivity, and dislike loss of control.
  • Measures their personal worth by how much they do.
  • Wants you in turn to get to the point, because they are irritated by inefficiency and indecision.
  • Has the ability to deal with tough interactions without becoming upset by criticism or personal rejection.
  • Their main priority is the task in hand, and the results achieved.
  • Under pressure, they will assert themselves strongly and dictate the way things will be.




Expressive or Peacock                    THE SOCIAL SPECIALIST


  • Is friendly and easy-going
  • Works at a fast and spontaneous pace
  • Struggles with commitment and follow-through
  • Tries to create an atmosphere that encourages flexibility
  • Achieves acceptance through sociability and creating a stimulating environment
  • wants to be admired and seeks recognition; dislikes being ignored
  • measures their personal worth by the amount of recognition and acknowledgement (or complaints) they receive
  • They like to try the new and different; to live for the here and now
  • They have happy spirits and can endure hardships and trials easier than other social style





  • Works well with others and promotes harmony
  • Prefers to maintain relationships and avoid confrontation
  • Is a good listener and is sensitive to others feelings
  • Is a strong and loyal team player
  • Prefers an atmosphere that encourages close relationships
  • Achieves acceptance through conformity and loyalty
  • Likes to have direction and want to be appreciated
  • Works at a slow and easy pace, which tends to lend an air of relaxation to others in the group
  • They seek deep meaning in relationships and experiences
  • Can sometimes create tension for others because o f their personal insistence on doing things in a slow-paced, warm and friendly, responsible but non-aggressive way





  • Is more formal and conservative
  • Has a strong sense of duty and obligation
  • Is steadfast, reliable, and dependable
  • Has a forceful work ethic, with a measured and systematic pace
  • Prefers an atmosphere that encourages careful preparation
  • Achieves recognition through being correct, logical and thorough
  • Is a natural giver
  • Often takes on too much responsibility and tend to be worriers
  • Does not like unpredictability and surprises
  • Their main priority is the job at hand and the process to achieve it
  • Under pressure, an Analytical will withdraw into their own world and avoid contact with the causes of their stress.

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