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Our Research Conference

UK Coaching Research Series 2021

Since 2018, our research conference has brought coaches, coaching system professionals and policy makers, coach developers, researchers, academics, students and learning designers together to explore new research and insight and discuss applied practice across a variety of themes. 

This year, delegates joined us to explore our theme of Coaching for All through a series of free research webinars.

Our fantastic team of speakers spoke about their recent research projects, explored their findings and showed practical ways to apply their learning.

Further details about each of the research webinars can be found below with links to the sessions now available to view on demand for subscribers to the exclusive UK Coaching Club.

Webinar Sessions

This practical and interactive session focused on a disability awareness programme, which was developed to upskill and motivate coaches to commit to volunteering in disability sports. The programme also aimed to increase awareness and understanding of different impairments and help coaches to adapt activities. 

Session Objectives:

  • understand how potential barriers can affect participation within a session      
  • understand the importance of adapting activities for all and how this can vary with different impairments
  • learn how to adapt activities to make the session inclusive for all involved.

Who is it for?


  • coaches wishing to gain further insight (through a practical and interactive session) on adaptations to include everyone. 


Mark Bull, Shrewsbury Town in the Community

This session introduced the Sport for Confidence Model and illustrated the complex relationship between health conditions and physical activity. 

The experiences of an occupational therapist, a specialised sports coach and participant were drawn upon to explore co-production as a means to achieve inclusion in sport and physical activity.  

Session Objectives:

  • be introduced to the Sport for Confidence model and the co-production approach
  • explore the coach-occupational therapist relationships
  • gain an understanding of the lived experience of people with a health condition.

Who is it for?

  • coaches 
  • health care professionals
  • coaching system workforce and policy makers 
  • wider coaching workforce.


Liz Fletcher, Sport for Confidence; Liddie Bone, Disability Rights UK; Mark, Sport for Confidence participant; Tom, Sport for Confidence, specialist coach.

StreetGames shares the learning from their ‘test and learn’ project, which sought to reach, engage, activate and re-active teenagers from lower socio-economic groups during the 2020 Coronavirus pandemic.

Showcasing Totally Runable, Barnsley – who adapted to online engagement. This session shared the assumptions that were proved wrong, adaptions needed and how the programme succeeded by repeated evolution. 

Session Objectives:

  • understand the test and learn approach adopted by StreetGames 
  • explore adaptations for online delivery 
  • share experiences of online engagement.

Who is it for?

  • coaches and activators working with children and young people
  • community coaches and activators.


Ceris Anderson, Street Games and Natalie Jackson, Totally Runable.

England Boxing’s project found that coaches play a far more significant role in the lives of boxing club members. 

This session shared the insight and learning, explored the role of boxing coaches and provoked thinking around developing sporting habits in deprived areas. 

Session Objectives:

  • think about your own delivery and share practice 
  • gain practical ideas for working with deprived communities. 

Who is it for?

  • community coaches 
  • coaches working with children and young people 
  • wider coaching workforce.


Ron Tulley, England Boxing.

This session gave delegates a practical experience of simple tools to create a Thinking Environment® and coaching mindset. 

Drawing on resilience coaching projects undertaken with artists and sports activators from backgrounds under-represented in leadership, the session focused on how to increase connection, confidence and resilience wherever you wish participants to take charge of their performance/well-being goals.  

Session Objectives: 

  • understand the fundamentals of creating a Thinking Environment® and coaching mindset 
  • understand how to increase connection, confidence and resilience
  • understand and experience, in breakout rooms, a simple tool to help you apply your learning to your practice. 

Who is it for?

  • coaches working with individuals from under-represented groups or experiencing barriers
  • coaches looking to bring a one-to-one coaching mindset to team or group experiences 
  • coach developers. 


Steph Vidal Hall, Vidal-Hall Associates.

Resources from this sessions are currently in development and will be available soon

The Engaging with Ethnically Diverse Communities symposium focused on advancing the conversation on diversity within the sports coaching community. This session discussed research on inclusive/exclusive language and showcased three projects that aimed to advance diversity and create more inclusive learning environments. The speakers communicated the progress that has been made towards making sport an inclusive place for participants and coaches alike, but also highlighted the challenges and work to be done to achieve their final goal. 

Session Objectives:

  • consider language and terminology used 
  • reflect on the impact language has on others 
  • gain insight into the three projects 
    • ECB Cities Team – Dream Big Desi Women Volunteering Project
    • British Fencing and Maslaha – Muslim Girls Fence
    • Sporting Communities – Coach Development Project.

Who is it for?

  • coaches working with ethnically diverse populations 
  • coaching system workforce and policy makers 
  • wider coaching workforce
  • coach developers. 


Dr Beth Clarkson and Laura Grubb, University of Portsmouth

Rebecca Sawiuk, University of Hertfordshire

Virginia Bailey, British Fencing

Alaa Alsaraji, Maslaha

Justin Preston and Hina Mistry, England and Wales Cricket Board

Ben Rigby and Ed Chrayah, Sporting Communities

Coach Life: Coaching for All

We have produced a series of video case studies with coaches from diverse ethnic communities and lower socio-economic backgrounds to investigate the importance of embracing diversity at all levels of sport and to showcase the benefits that diversity can bring

Watch the Video Series

Applied Coaching Research Conference 2020 – Maximising Potential through Coaching 


On Wednesday, the 26 February 2020, we returned to Derby County Football Club for our third research conference.

The theme of the conference was Maximising Potential through Coaching, and our jam-packed programme of workshops, posters and 'Time for You' sessions helped delegates understand how coaching can be used to maximise the potential of people in sport and physical activity.

Research is essential to inform the ongoing development of coaching policy and practice. The aim of our research conference is to bridge the gap between research and practice by enabling researchers and practitioners to come together to learn, share and collaborate.

The keynote speakers were:

  • Donna Fraser, UK Athletics

  • Dr Steve Ingham, Supporting Champions

  • Edel Quin, University of Chichester and Safe in Dance International

See and hear what went on by checking out our Twitter wall below.

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