Hillary CommissionCoaches Count
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New Zealand 2000
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kids with coach
photo courtesy of Peter Bush

Coaching - No Exceptions

As the only female player in the NZ Wheel Blacks rugby team, Atopa travels to Hamilton from Rotorua to take part in her sport. The rest of the time she travels around the Rotorua district, speaking to teenagers. "I love volunteering my time speaking about the values, benefits and barriers of participating in sport. I won't let anything stand in the way of my sport - and my disability doesn't stop me from living my life, playing my sport and being my own person."

Atapo Naera te Houkotuku, Te Arawa/Rangiti (MDC Sports Awards 1999 national winner)
Atapo Naera Te Houkotuku

By June 2000 we will see:

  • 20 major sport organisations achieve their player-to-coach/leader ratio
  • Accredited coach programmes in 35 national sport bodies
  • National strategy for development and support of officials
Coaching is vital to sport. Sport is all about seeking success and enjoyment through improved skills and strategies. Coaching is our first priority in developing sport. The Commission supports coaching at every level - from helping a child pass a ball, to shaving 100th of a second off an Olympic swimmer's time.

All levels of coaching are important, but the huge majority of our 300,000 coaches in New Zealand are unpaid. Their efforts often produce champions, and always produce pleasure. The people who work behind the scenes - the coaches, officials, volunteers and administrators - make sport happen. Without these dedicated volunteers sport would not hold such a key part in our lifestyle and culture.

National and Regional Coach Development

Better Coaching for Everyone
Coaching is about skills. Ideally all coaches should receive training on the technical aspect of their sport and how to communicate - especially with young people. Coaches who are trained are more likely to see a career path in coaching, and ultimately reach the top of their sport.

The Commission supports coach training in a wide variety of leadership, outdoor and active-leisure organisations. We work closely with them to support development in all areas, but particularly coaching.

The Commission provided $5.6 million to national sports and active leisure organisations in 1998/99 - part of which was invested to boost their coaching programmes. Most sports now have strategies to improve coaching at every level, and we provide the financial support and advice they need. Coaching New Zealand (CNZ) has now become part of the Hillary Commission's operation and provides the coach training materials. Coaching NZ's world-class coach education system offers courses and qualifications for the enthusiast up to the professional.

Coaching is being strengthened nationwide. The number of accredited coaches increased by 26% in 1999. Coaches accredited to Level 1 and 2 increased by 665 over last year to 3,179. Of the sports club projects we fund just over a third were supported to train coaches through the Community Sport Fund.

Coaches Count Campaign - Thanks Coach!

More Coaches for all sports
There is a shortage of good coaches. Many people, particularly young people, want to be challenged and to excel. Most sports suffer from a shortage of coaches who can achieve this, which presents a major challenge to sport and the Commission. Without good coaching young people won't all get a sporting chance.

Around 10% of New Zealand adults are involved in some sort of coaching - it is an enormously popular activity. Coaching is rewarding and a source of pride, but it is also a vital service. Through Coaches Count we have promoted the positive side of coaching, to get more people involved.

The number of coaches trained in 1998/99 grew as a result of the Commission's Coaches Count campaign. Independent research on our television advertising shows that it is effective, with 87% of the target audience aware of the promotion. For the third year in a row sport-specific coaching resources have been produced for 11 summer and nine winter sports.

Running Sport

Volunteers - the Lifeblood of Sport
Many thousands of coaches, managers and officials dedicate their time for others every day - on a voluntary basis. While the numbers are there - more than 340,000 people volunteer for sport - sports clubs and schools always welcome more help. The Commission aims to help further by offering training in club management.

People who give their time to run sports clubs and school teams deserve support. Trained volunteers improve the way local sport is run. They therefore also improve the ability of clubs to gain and retain members - and build community support. The Running Sport resources give helpful step-by-step information on good administration, publicity and financial management, and running successful events. Sports trusts organise many Running Sport seminars every year.

2,410 modules of the Running Sport resource were distributed to clubs through sports trusts and 13 national sports bodies. A stage-two Running Sport resource is under development, aimed at quality management in sports organisations.


Improving the Quality of Sport
The quality of a sports experience determines whether people will stay with the game - as players, officials or spectators. The experience of each participant can be improved by ensuring the organisation provides a high standard of service.

A new quality standard was introduced in October 1998 to recognise and reward national organisations meeting demanding criteria for the quality of their service to members and participants.

Two national sports bodies - Hockey NZ and Women's Golf NZ - have been awarded the SportsMark. These two bodies are showing the way by demonstrating a best-practice approach to their sport leadership, management and development. The Commission congratulates them for their desire to continuously improve. Thirty other sports have shown a commitment to quality service by registering in the accreditation programme. Each governing body can pinpoint areas of need and measure its performance against best international practice. Eventually SportsMark will determine the nature of any strategic support we offer a national organisation.

Promoting the Maori Dimension

Maori excel in sport and participate more than non-Maori. This enthusiasm is part of our national sport scene, and can help to improve the health of Maori.

We have encouraged national sports bodies to develop strategies that take advantage of the full potential of their Maori members - as players, coaches, umpires and administrators. The philosophy underpinning this is Omangia Te Oma Roa (Run the Long Journey/ Participate for Life) which sees participation in physical leisure as a journey along which one travels for life. According to the philosophy physical leisure is an effective medium for reaching Maori and promoting and involving Maori in the development of strategies to achieve Maori wellness.

The Taskforce on Maori Sport, Fitness and Leisure published its report which was distributed widely. This has led to new strategies for Maori. These strategies include:

  • adopting a holistic approach to whanau, wairua, tinana and hinengaro, and respecting tikanga Maori
  • acknowledging and supporting initiatives that are unique to Maori
  • helping organisations develop their relationships with iwi.

The Commission has undertaken to increase the responsiveness of national sports bodies, regional sports trusts and local authorities to meet the sporting needs of Maori. Sports trusts in Waitakere, Wanganui, Manawatu, Hawkes Bay, Wellington, Canterbury, Otago and Southland have begun this exciting process. The national bodies for netball, basketball, tennis, hockey, scouting, rugby union and league have also pioneered the way into formal links with iwi. Taupo District Council has developed a relationship with Ngati Tuwharetoa aimed at developing sports opportunities locally.

Winning Women

Special Focus on Women and Girls
While recent years have witnessed a growth in the number of girls playing sport at school, New Zealand still needs more young women playing and leading sport at all levels.

Encouraging more women into sport and supporting those who already hold leading roles is a priority for the Hillary Commission. The Winning Women programme aims to advance women's sport, and contribute to world strategies through the International Women in Sport Working Group

The SportsMark quality accreditation programme includes minimum standards for women and girls in sport. Thirty national sports organisations are working towards this accreditation.

A report on women in coaching will be used to develop strategies in this important area in the future.



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The Hillary Commission for Sport, Fitness and Leisure
Te Komihana Haakinakina a Hillary
Our programmes are funded by the NZ Lottery Grants Board