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Advance Your Coaching Knowledge with These Useful Online Courses

BY Phil White

Ask yourself: “How can I become a better coach?” To excel in the industry, maintaining the latest knowledge, skills and technologies is a good practice for your business.

Legendary Indiana University basketball coach Bobby Knight once said that “A coach should never be afraid to ask questions of anyone he could learn from.” This encapsulates the growth mindset approach, curiosity and humility of every instructor who understands that no matter how many years of experience they have under their belt. There’s always more to learn and new people to teach it. There are a lot of excellent in-person education programs that can help you advance your coaching craft. Still, in this article, we’ll focus on some online offerings that allow you to learn remotely at your own pace from domain experts in many facets of human performance. These courses will empower you to meet your clients’ needs better, improve your value proposition, and make you a more well-rounded coach.


Many nutrition courses these days focus on a particular diet, such as paleo or keto. In contrast, Precision Nutrition takes a more wide-ranging approach to eating for optimal performance and health. One of the foundational pillars of this system is behavior change, which will empower you to unite sound principles from dieticians and nutritionists with practical ways for your athletes to replace poor eating habits with positive ones. If you want to progress beyond Level 1 certification, Level 2 offers 20 weeks of mentoring as you become a Master Health Coach and proven strategies to build nutrition coaching into your business model. The company also offers a Sleep, Stress Management, and Recovery course to help you remove lifestyle obstacles that might be holding your clients back.

Movement Quality

The intake process is one of the most crucial components of onboarding any new client. You don’t only need to get to know the athlete and explore their training history but also to understand what they’re currently capable of and not. Even someone with a high training age can have serious gaps in their movement literacy that can predispose them to injury and hamper their training progress. The Functional Movement Screen from FMS is the gold standard for coaches, sports teams, and military units who want to assess movement quality and capacity accurately. The FMS Level 1 online course will allow you to do likewise to help improve your athletes’ competence with the seven fundamental movements, tailor their training, and reduce their chances of getting hurt.

Sports Psychology

A few courses in the TrainingPeaks University platform focus on slivers of sports psychology. And while there are many mindset and mental training coaches plying their trade, to learn sound fundamentals, you’d be best off to seek out education from a bona fide sports psychologist. One of the best is Dr. Michael Gervais, who has consulted with Olympians, pro sports teams and large companies. Gervais teamed up with Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll on the Compete to Create curriculum. Their introductory course, Finding Your Best, provides 18 tried and tested principles — including grit, focus and trust — that will help develop athletes’ mental game and your own over eight weeks. One of the best features of this program is getting one-on-one, personalized feedback from Gervais and the other high-performance instructors.

Strength Training

The kettlebell is arguably the most versatile strength training tool there is — yes, we hear you, barbell advocates. It’s also very compact, allowing it to fit in any home, garage gym, or even in the corner of an office or living room. StrongFirst offers comprehensive resources that will empower you to instruct your clients in kettlebell training. If you want to become a certified instructor, you should pursue the SFG I certification, which has constantly improved in the 20+ years since it was first offered. In the meantime, the online StrongFirst Kettlebell Fundamentals course will help you master the swing, get-up, goblet squat, press, and other movements so that you can safely and effectively teach them to your clients. You’ll also learn some basic yet highly effective programs to help your athletes get stronger and more powerful in just a couple of short weekly sessions. In addition, StrongFirst provides similar video-based courses for barbell and bodyweight training.


It’s all very well to increase your clients’ speed, power, strength and endurance. But if they can’t move well and sustainably, you’re layering these physical qualities on a shaky foundation that will eventually crack. Dr. Kelly Starrett’s system can equip you with the techniques necessary to build a more robust platform on sound mechanics and movement principles, even if you’re not a PT or AT. The 77 short videos that comprise the Ready State Movement & Mobility 101 course make the content easy to digest, no matter how busy your schedule is. While many of the techniques focus on helping your athletes improve their mobility and stability, you’ll also discover how to help them sequence their movements, identify and fix technique errors, and rehab injured clients.


One of the challenges in the increasingly crowded endurance coaching field is developing expertise while getting noticed by potential new clients. TrainingPeaks Accreditation can help you accomplish both simultaneously. To reach Level 1, simply complete the TrainingPeaks Essentials and Introduction to Sports Psychology courses via TrainingPeaks University and submit an application. You can then continue your education journey by meeting the additional requirements for Level 2 accreditation. This accreditation will help you get a better grasp of the business side and exercise physiology and biomechanics that inform the creation of effective training programs and workouts. Plus, with Level 2, you can apply to be part of the Coach Match program that pairs athletes directly with athletes looking for coaching. Other TrainingPeaks University courses allow you to dive deeper into elements like power training, heart rate variability and hydration.

Coaching Guide Image Of Noah With A Client At A Table.

How to Be a Successful Endurance Coach

Learn from this guide to help you each step of the way as you build and grow your coaching business.

About Phil White
Phil White is an Emmy-nominated writer and the co-author of The 17 Hour Fast with Dr. Frank Merritt, Waterman 2.0 with Kelly Starrettand Unplugged with Andy Galpin and Brian Mackenzie. Learn more at www.philwhitebooks.com and follow Phil on Instagram @philwhitebooks.