Requirements for Coaching Certification

According to the USA Swimming rulebook, anyone who coaches athletes at a USA Swimming practice or competition, must be a coach member of USA Swimming and must have satisfactorily completed safety training, concussion training, anti-doping course, background check and athlete protection training required by USA Swimming as well as be at least 18 years of age. You are also required to complete the Foundations of Coaching 101  coaches' education course prior to receiving your coach membership. Then, prior to your second year of coaching, you must complete the Foundations of Coaching 201 AND the Rules & Regulations test. Read below for more information about these requirements or use this LINK.

USA Swimming recommends that a new coach register as a “coach member” prior to starting on the requirements. TIDE will submit this membership registration form on your behalf.


Background Check Requirement

All coaches are required to successfully complete a Background Check through the USA Swimming background check provider. 

  • Renewal: Every two years
  • Location: Outside provider. Click the link below to access
  • Results Submitted: Automatically reported into the USA Swimming database upon successful completion
  • Cost: $38
  • Time: A few minutes


Safety Requirements

Coach members must maintain certification in CPR and Safety Training for Swim Coaches.

  • Renewal: Every two years
  • Location: Outside provider. Click the link below for list of acceptable courses
  • Results Submitted: You must submit certifications to your LSC registrar
  • Cost: $15 for online course plus facility charges. Other course fees vary depending on where you obtain certification
  • Time: Safety Training Online Course is approximately 3 hours. Skills portions depends on instructor and course content.

Access Safety Requirements here. View related documents at the bottom of the page.


Athlete Protection Training*

USA Swimming is committed to raising awareness about athlete protection and prevention of abuse in sport.

  • Renewal: Every year
  • Location: USA Swimming website. Click the link below
  • Results Submitted: Automatically reported into the database upon successful completion
  • Cost: Free
  • Time: About 90 minutes

*If this is your first time taking training or if your APT has expired: You must take the Athlete Protection Training: Core Course. You can renew your Athlete protection training requirement by taking a Refresher Course, as early as 90 days prior and up to your expiration date. The refresher course takes approximately 15 minutes to complete.

 

Foundations of Coaching (FoC)

Foundations of Coaching 101 must be completed by all new coach members.
  • When taken: One time only, prior to initial coach membership
  • Location:  Outside provider. Click the link below to access
  • Results Submitted: Automatically reported into the USA Swimming database upon successful completion
  • Cost: $15
  • Time: Approximately 90 minutes
Foundations of Coaching 201 must be completed prior to registering for second year of coach membership.
  • When taken: One time only, prior to 2nd year of coach membership
  • Location:  Outside provider. Click the link below to access
  • Results Submitted: Automatically reported into the USA Swimming database upon successful completion
  • Cost: $25
  • Time: Approximately 5 hours


Rules & Regulations for Swim Coaches

Rules and Regulations for Swim Coaches is a 30 question online test based on the current USA Swimming Rulebook.

  • When taken: One time only, prior to 2nd year of coach membership
  • Location:  USA Swimming website. Click the link below to access
  • Results Submitted: Automatically reported into the USA Swimming database upon successful completion
  • Cost: Free
  • Time: Approximately 1 hour

To access the Rules & Regulations test click here.


USADA Coach's Advantage Tutorial

USADA Coach's Advantage Tutorial is provided by the United States Anti-Doping Agency and contains information for coaches of swimmers at all levels.

  • When taken: Every year
  • Location:  USA Swimming Learn. Click the link below to access
  • Results Submitted: Automatically reported into the USA Swimming database upon successful completion
  • Cost: Free
  • Time:20 minutes

To access the course, please visit www.usaswimming.org/learn

 

State of Virginia Mandated Reporter Training

The State of Virginia requires that "any athletic coach, director, or other person 18 years of age or older employed by or volunteering with a private sports organization or team" complete a free, online, training module: Mandated Reporters: Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect. The course is available online; you will be asked to answer questions as you progress through the course. You will need to score 90% to fulfill the requirement. The course presents material in this guide for Mandated Reporters.

Access the course (CWSE 5692)  here.