Best Careers for Teachers: Compensation and Types of Coaching (page 4)
The job outlook for coaches is just slightly above the national average for other jobs. The average yearly income for coaches is $26,950, although it is typically a bit higher if coupled with teaching other classes. Keep in mind that schools are only one place to coach. You might check into local fitness and recreation centers, community parks, and community organizations like the Y for potential jobs.
Being a coach is a wonderful way to blend guiding children and playing sports. However, there are some important drawbacks to consider. You will frequently put in amazingly long hours, especially during the season during which your sport is busy competing. It typically involves a fair amount of travel, which can mean time away from your family. It takes an ongoing dedication and passion that can be quite tiring, both physically and mentally.
Beyond the Field
Take time to do some brainstorming outside the box when it comes to coaching. Not all coaches teach athletics. There are a number of other types of coaches and each one involves the same basic talent: the ability to direct, instruct, and train an individual or team/group with the goal of developing and improving on a skill. For many people, coaching has become a very lucrative job, as the overhead and training is limited
What coaching jobs exist that don't involve keeping score? There are life coaches (What's missing in my life and how can I find it?); career coaches (Where do I go from here with these skills?); health coaches (Can I eat better and/or exercise more effectively?); date/relationship coaches (Where do I meet that special someone?); and childbirth coaches (When do I need to breathe and how fast?). Let's take a brief look at each one.
This field has seen tremendous growth in recent years. The International Coach Federation has more than 12,000 members worldwide, double what it had only five years earlier. The idea of life coaching got its start in the executive world (leadership and management training) and expanded from there. Virtually everyone has goals in life—things they want to accomplish but need extra or expert support and guidance to attain. That is where the life coach comes in. He or she is there to help you quit smoking or start exercising, improve your marriage or decrease your unnecessary stress. Currently, there is no required education or training program to complete for this job. It is not regulated by any agency. Some organizations offer a type of certification, but it is not necessary to have to hang out a life coach shingle with your name on it. To see a listing of current life coaches, check out http://www.lifecoach.com/.
- "If you are frustrated with an aspect of your life, not sure how to stop making the same choices you keep making, or just want to have more happiness, peace of mind, and passion—life coaching can do that for you."
— Rhonda Briitten, founder of the Fearless Living Institute
Just like its name implies, a career coach is someone who helps others discover the best possible profession they are suited for and then get jobs in those markets. They ask questions, provide tips and resources, and help network in order to see their clients get just the right jobs. Typical responsibilities of this type of coach include assessing your behavior, creating an action plan, eliminating distractions, providing guidance, and teaching helpful information on creating resumes, doing interviews, and marketing yourself. Look into this profession through http://www.careercoachinstitute.com/.
As the focus on becoming a healthier nation grows, so does this field. A health coach traditionally focuses on helping a person improve his diet and/or fitness, while others emphasize helping people with specific conditions or illnesses to live longer and better. This type of coach may give advice on vitamin supplementation, ways to reduce stress, or how to stop smoking. To find out more about the field, check out http://www.healthcoachtraining.com/.
- "We have business coaches, dietitians, accountants, but we don't have an expert for our love life? It doesn't make sense. It is really the single most important aspect in our life."
— Lisa Clampitt, founder of the Matchmaking Institute, New York
Are you a great matchmaker? You might want to look into becoming a dating coach. This type of coach focuses on helping clients meet and attract compatible mates, whether for the short term or for a long-term relationship. The job may include lessons in everything from effective flirting to fashion faux pas. Typically, dating coaches do not arrange dates, but instead guide clients to making their own. You can see more about the profession at http://www.datingcoach.net.
Do you love being around moms and babies? This may be a great avenue to pursue. (Please note that many labor/childbirth coaches are also known as doulas.) This type of coach is trained to assist women before, during, and after labor and delivery. Many doulas help with the non-medical aspects of prenatal care, answering questions, easing fears, and helping parents develop a birth plan. They often teach mothers-to-be how to breathe during the birthing process and may teach classes on various methods such as Lamaze or Bradley techniques. During labor itself, doulas typically assist with breathing through contractions. Some are trained in using homeopathy or other alternative health care with laboring women. Doulas may provide massage and, in home birth cases, help manage other children—and confused husbands. After the baby is born, some childbirth coaches stay in the hospital or home to help establish breast-feeding, instruct new parents on how to hold and care for their new child, and generally make sure the new family is secure. Doulas are not usually paid by the hour but in a lump sum that can run hundreds to thousands of dollars, depending on the area, the extent of the services, and the time involved. Training is not required but is often requested by clients; programs can be found online and through local childbirth organizations. Check out http://www.dona.org/mothers/index.php for more information.
Coaching—on and off the field—means a great deal of time and dedication on your part. Not only do you have to be skilled in whatever topic it might be, but you also have to have personal passion to help another person achieve his or her goals. Your hours will most likely not be very predictable and your paycheck might fluctuate greatly from week to week, depending on how many clients you have. You may find yourself being a combination of therapist and coach at the same time, and it can be draining and demanding. On the other hand, if you see someone blossom and achieve something new—from a personal best score to the perfect job—and know that you were a big part of that achievement, it's a feeling you will never forget. Getting paid for it just makes it that much better.
Interested in this field? Consider these questions and think about how the answers might affect this career choice:
- What sports do you know extremely well? Are you familiar with the elements of teamwork?
- What is your fitness level? Can you keep up in the classes you would teach?
- Are you willing to coach individual teams after school and on weekends?
- What sports have you personally played in your life? Have you been on a team?
- What are your philosophies on competition?
- Have you had any additional courses in sports psychology, physiology, kinesiology, nutrition and fitness, physical education, or sports medicine? If not, would you be willing to take some or all of these courses?
- Do you want to be a sports coach or does some other type of coaching appeal to you? If so, what kind and where can you find additional information about it?
- What are your theories or ideas on disciplining your team members?
- What types of motivation techniques would you use with your athletes?
Further Resources to Investigate
American Coaching Association
- 2141 Birch Drive
- Lafayette Hills, PA 19444
International Coach Federation
- 2365 Harrodsburg Road, Suite A325
- Lexington, KY 40504
The National High School Coaches Association
- 3276 Nazareth Road
- Easton, PA 18045
National Association of Sports Officials
- 2017 Lathrop Avenue
- Racine, WI 53405
About becoming a Life Coach
Brown-Volkman, Deborah. Four Steps to Building a Profitable Coaching Practice: A Complete Marketing Resource for Coaches (iUniverse, 2003).
Flaherty, James. Coaching: Evoking Excellence in Others (Butterworth-Heinemann, 2005).
Sabock, Ralph. Coaching: A Realistic Perspective (Rowman and Littlefield Publishers, 2008).
Stanton, Carol and Katy Dockril. Life Coach in a Box: A Motivational Kit for Making the Most out of Life (Chronicle Books, 2006).
Williams, Patrick and Diane Menendez. Becoming a Professional Life Coach: Lessons from the Institute of Life Coach Training (W.W. Norton and Co., 2007).
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