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USSA announces coaches education certification system

Wed, Sep  24, 2008 - By US Ski Team

USSA Coaches Education Certification
Level 100

  • Invigorate your team by learning more about cross country ski racing.
  • Provide an environment in which your athletes can maximize their talent.
  • Help raise the level of skiing in the U.S. to medal-winning heights.

Effective October 2008, the USSA will launch the first level of a multi-level cross country-specific  Coaches Education Certification System. The curriculum is based on up-to-date practices used by the U.S. Ski Team in the quest for Olympic medals. The course materials come directly from the Team’s coaches and several of their key partners. Instructors will be trained and certified by the U.S. Ski Team. The rollout of the certification system will occur throughout the next several seasons, and once completely launched, course content will continue to evolve with the sport.

Level 100 Certification Checklist:

  • Participate in a U.S. Ski Team-approved technique clinic (see schedule below). If you’ve participated in a U.S. Ski Team clinic within the past two years this category is satisfied.
  • Purchase Level 100 course manual and Microsoft Excel training planning document ($110) and take free on-line test. The manual and Excel document will be available for download online at mid-October
  • Complete Basic Coaching Principles certification (National Federation of State High School Associations— , American Sport Education Program— , or other). Proof must be sent to USSA Sport Education.
  • Furnish current proof of first aid / CPR certification to USSA Sport Education

To maintain a current status with Level 100, a coach must provide the USSA with proof of continuing education every two years. This can be in the form of taking another course, technique clinic, education conference, etc. To be certified, a coach must hold a valid USSA coaching license. The certification level will be indicated on the membership card.

Level 100 Technique Clinic Dates:

Oct. 12, 2-4 p.m., Lake Placid, N.Y. at the USOTC
Cl and FR on rollerskis, with U.S. Ski Team Staff. Contact Janice Sibilia: to reserve a spot.

Oct. 18, 9-noon, Gear West, Long Lake, MN
Cl and FR on rollerskis, w/ CXC coach Bryan Fish. Contact Brodie: to reserve a spot.

Oct. 25, Time TBA, Mora, MN following MNHS coaches meeting
Cl and FR rollerskis, w/USST coach Matt Whitcomb

Dec. 5-7, Stowe, VT, as part of NENSA’s Gaining Ground Clinic
skis or rollerskis, w/NENSA’s Janice Sibilia. Contact to reserve a spot.

Jan. 4, Anchorage, A.K., U.S. Nationals, 2 p.m. at Kincaid Park
Cl and FR on skis. U.S. Ski Team staff. Contact to reserve a spot.


Why Do We Need a Sport-Specific Education System?

The U.S. Ski Team wants to win Olympic medals and recognizes the critical role of educated coaches in this dream. Until now, cross country has not required sport-specific education to become a high-level ski coach. This causes programs to inefficiently pour time and resources into the development of their own coaches, athletes, and overall program success. The USSA Nordic Coaches Education program will assist clubs in the development of their own coaches and will do so consistently with the educational standards of the U.S. Ski Team.

The U.S. Ski Team will begin to require Level 100 certification on the resume for coaches to attend trips like World Juniors and J1 Scandinavian Championships. Ultimately, the goal is for regions, clubs, teams and employers of public and private high schools to require certification for employment. An educated coach is a better coach, and coaches that are participating in a curriculum based on the best practices from throughout the sport science world will ensure that the U.S. Ski Team reaches the goals of winning at all levels.

To avoid printing and shipping costs, the U.S. Ski Team will sell its manual online in PDF format allowing staff to efficiently keep the manual updated with the latest knowledge and theory. Level 100 certified coaches will be notified when changes are made. Questions?

The ball is rolling, but the hill is steep.
We need more pushers.
Educate yourself in Level 100 for the benefit of your athletes.