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Sporting Workforce

Sporting Workforce

At WSA we believe the people that make sport happen are vital. The value of our sporting workforce is priceless. Coaches, officials, club volunteers, mentors, teachers, parents, managers, sport scientists and many more, are all part of the rich sporting workforce tapestry, without whom sport simply would not happen. At WSA we champion a lot of great projects to help support the diverse variety of roles within the sporting workforce:

Minimum Standards of Deployment

The Minimum Standards of Deployment (MSD) guide has been compiled by the Welsh Sports Association (WSA) in consultation with Sport Wales, and the numerous National Governing Bodies (NGBs) for sport in Wales. Each have a vested interest in developing sports participation throughout the country to create a healthier more vibrant Wales.

In doing so, they are all working toward the common aspiration that “Every Child is Hooked on Sport for Life”. Each organisation aims to provide opportunities in the community, and aligned support to those talented performers with the ability to compete, and succeed on a global stage, crafting a “Nation of Champions”.
With recognised sporting success on a world stage it will help us all to support, galvanise and “Unite a Proud Sporting Nation”.

The quick reference guide for the MSD has been created to allow all partners of sport across the various sectors in Wales, to have a simple to access point of reference, to make informed choices about making use of the services that sports coaches could provide in their environments.

Information contained within the guide includes the recommended qualifications and experience a suitable “lead” coach should possess, and additional consideration that the deployment partner should make when engaging such coaches, ensuring opportunity and provision is maximised and recruitment processes are streamlined, enabling “Every Person to Play Their Part”.

For further information, please download a copy of the MSD guide using the link below:

Coaching Cymru

Coaching Cymru is a partnership between the Welsh Sports Association, Local Authorities and National Governing Bodies to ensure that all coaches in Wales are fully supported in their progression as deliverers within Welsh Sport.

There are approximately 45,000 active coaches in Wales, around 20% of whom drop-out of sport every year, mainly because they don’t feel supported in their work; this is what Coaching Cymru is directly addressing. The WSA has identified that the progression of sport needs coaches who enter the system in Wales to find their job fulfilling, feel supported and remain in their chosen sport on a long term basis. The project, which has successfully completed its pilot phase is currently funded by Sport Wales and includes an online National Portal for coaches to use, as an independent learning and development resource.

If you are a Coach in Wales but aren’t yet registered with us, please follow the below link to join the online community and keep up-to-date on all the latest news and events:

Online Modules for Coaches

As well as the informal learning hosted on the Coaching Cymru Portal, we have also partnered with Coachwise to host three formal online Coach Development Modules.

These include:

How to Coach: Plan, Do, Review

  • A great introduction to the coaching process for new coaches or as a refresher for existing coaches.

Inspiring Positive Behaviour in Sport

  • Practical advice on how to inspire positive behaviour from participants within your sessions and how to ensure a rewarding experience for all.

Renewal: Safeguarding and Protecting Children in Sport

  • WSA are the hosts in Wales for the Online Renewal of the sportscoachUK/NSPCC/CPSU Safeguarding and Protecting Children in Sport workshop.
  • Initially coaches and volunteers must attend a three-hour classroom version of this workshop.
  • Once three years has passed an individual can take a renewal online instead of having to go to another classroom workshop.
  • The renewal is completed via our online portal and contains an additional two informative sections on how to create positive sports parents and how to ensure safe communication with “Digital Kids”.

All three modules are available to purchase from our online learning store here:

Workforce Planning

Here at WSA, we help sporting organisations develop the right people with the right skills to grow their organisation and achieve its targets. We use a four stage process that can help any organisation:

  • First understand their customer base – who their participants are
  • The numbers and skill levels of the workforce they currently have
  • The numbers and skill level of the workforce they will need
  • Once all that evidence is gathered we then devise an action plan to recruit and train people into the areas of need or to develop any additional identified skills.

We have performed this process with high degrees of success, on numerous occasions, with National Governing Bodies, local authorities, sports clubs and specific projects.

WSA members are entitled to a free consultation with our workforce planning specialist. To book one in, contact us on 02920 334970.

Welsh Coaching Network

The Welsh Coaching Network (WCN) provides a “think tank” forum for the WSA to assemble a network of sports related delegates, to discuss current successes, challenges and developments in the world of Sports Coaching across Wales.

The continuum for the topics of discussion range from shared best practice within qualification administration to opportunities for collaborative cost effective practice amongst NGBs and sports partnerships, through to the future of coaching in sport and engaging with fresh and innovative new ventures to engage with present and future generations.

Chaired by the WSA, the Welsh Coaching Network meets four times a year; three times in Wales utilising iconic sporting or cultural venues and a fourth assembly at the Sports Coach UK Coaching Summit, held annually around the UK. Attendees are representative of the leads for Coaching Development from sport’s National Governing Bodies (NGBs) of Wales, Local Authority Sports Development Units and key sports development partners such as universities, private sports providers and business consultants specialising in enhancing sporting provision.

Being representative of the coaching community of Wales, the WCN is guided by the demands of the sector. As such, delegates are invited to speak, present, interact and facilitate during the meetings to ensure that tangible outcomes are aligned with the needs of the sporting fraternity.

To join the WCN, and for more great benefits for your sporting organisation, sign up to be a member of WSA today.

If you are looking for a presentation from a previous meeting, within the last 18 months, you’ll find it right here.

Student Placement Programme

We are now entering the second year of our student placement deployment programme. The WSA partners with National Governing Bodies to help them understand their paid workforce needs and identify any particular roles or functions that need to be filled. We are then able to place students from one of our partner education institutes to bring a specialised set of skills including: Event Management, Tourism, Software Development, Business Management and many more areas.

Students gain experience within the sports sector and collect hours towards their employability module. NGBs are able to host a skilled student for up to 20 days with very little cost to them as a company.

This programme will be expanded over the next few years to provide more opportunities for students from a wider range of fields. We also hope to be able to accommodate dissertations and masters projects that will provide a more sustainable service to the NGB.

For further information regarding Project Support Officers, please contact us on: 02920 334970.

Useful Links

The Welsh Sports Association is constantly seeking to build new relationships with organisations that will benefit the sports sector. Here you will find details of a selection of other organisations that service the sporting workforce in Wales.

Child Protection in Sport Unit

The CPSU offer specific training for key individuals that play an important role in safeguarding, as well as playing a vital role in helping organisations towards the achievement of the safeguarding standards. This technical advice service is here to ensure best practice in this vital area across the sports sector. For more information and advice please contact Laura Whapham at

Club Solutions

The Sport Wales Club Solutions website provides club volunteers with a learning tool and access to guidance to deal with issues they may be facing in their club.

Fields in Trust

We protect vital open spaces all across the UK. From sports pitches to children’s playgrounds, bicycle trails to country parks we make sure that all kinds of outdoor spaces are safeguarded forever.


The StreetGames charity was set up by half a dozen organizers of neighbourhood sports projects. In 2005 they came together to make sport more widely available for disadvantaged young people and to maximize the power of sport to change young lives and to change disadvantaged communities.


Vi-Ability provides opportunities for people of all ages to develop skills by offering training, work experience and qualifications in commercial sports management. In doing this they also help to sustain thriving community sports clubs around the UK.