Sport Development – Coaching

Policy Section:                    Board of Directors
Policy Subsection:            Sport Development
Policy Title:                           Coaching

Policy Statement

Swimming Canada holds Coaches active in affiliated clubs and at sanctioned competitions to the highest educational, personal and professional standards. An inclusive body of coaches in Swimming Canada has a positive impact on the personal and athletic development of swimmers in all disciplines and at all levels of performance.


Swimming Canada believes that the demography of the coaches in affiliated clubs reflects the demographics of the swimming registrants in Canada. It is important to ensure that the development of coaches, at all levels of leadership, is inclusive.

Swimming Canada believes that coaches have a profound impact on the development of swimmers in all disciplines and at all levels of performance. As such, the coach has a “duty of care” responsibility for both personal and athletic development of their swimmers.   Because of this role it is imperative that good coaching fosters a safe and positive training and competitive environment for swimmers throughout their involvement in the sport. Responsible coaching maximizes the benefits to swimmers while minimizing any potential or inherent risks. This is accomplished by coaches who are well prepared and current.

Coach behaviours and responsibilities in affiliated clubs and competitions, and the coach role in swimmer development are guided by a Swimming Canada Coaching Code of Conduct.


Working in conjunction with partner organizations, Swimming Canada researches and defines acceptable coaching behaviours and ensures that coaches adhere to standards and parameters that focus on technical competence, professionalism, the safety of and development of swimmers. This includes, but is not limited to,

  • the promotion of coaching as an inclusive profession
  • the development and oversight of a Coaching Code of Conduct that addresses:
    o     the qualified coach’s responsibility for matters concerning coaching, training and the development of swimmers, and
    o     the coach’s role and responsibility in helping each person (athlete, official, parent, etc.) reach their potential in our sport.
    o     the application of appropriate penalties for Coaches not adhering to the Swimming Canada Coaching Code of Conduct,
  • the development and support for an inclusive, multi-faceted approach to coach and coaching development that includes:
    o     Certification
    o     Mentoring
    o     Relevant experience
    o     Relevant academic study
    o     Professional development

Swimming Canada works with the Coaching Association of Canada (CAC), Coaches of Canada, the Canadian Swimming Coaches and Teachers Association (CSCTA), and the Provincial Member organizations in the design and provision of coaching development opportunities.

Body Action
Board – Sport Development Committee

1.   Ensure that all policies of the Board related to coaching are aligned with the long-term athlete development strategy

2.   Conduct an evaluation of the progress of the strategic milestones/goals/programs in coaching.



1.   Delegates the coaching initiatives to an appropriate Operational structure;

2.  Communicates a strong position concerning the role and effective implementation of standards in coaching in the long-term development of swimmers;

3.  Develops a registry, reporting and evaluation system that regularly monitors the effectiveness of national and international development of coaches;

4.  Develops and continually evolves the overall communication and consultation strategy to lead change among the clubs, Provincial Section Members and Swimming Canada concerning the coaching initiatives.


As a Member of Swimming Canada, a Provincial Section is integral to the delivery and operations of coaching development, responsibilities and behaviours. Through the operational mandate of the CAC, a Provincial Section is required to provide coaching certification services as are developed, directed and mandated by Swimming Canada and the CAC.

Review and Approval

Approved:              September 18, 2015