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How to become a Para Coach

(April 01, 2012)

To improve the quality of training and regulate health and safety within Para-Equestrian (PE) dressage the British Dressage (BD) Para Committee have devised the Para Coaches Pathway. By following this pathway, coaches will be identified on the BD Database which will enable PE riders to locate coaches within their regions. Riders will have peace of mind that these coaches will be following a set pathway that focuses on Continued Professional Development on Para matters and runs in-line with the able-bodied coaches’ requirements for BD Database.


In order to be listed as a Para Coach the following requirements need to be met:


 18 years old or more.

 To be listed on the current BD Trainers Database, means having an up-to-date first aid certificate, freelance trainers’ public liability insurance, a child awareness certificate and to be a member of British Dressage.

 Prepared to make time to attend 2 BEF Para Squad Days in the first year - thereafter as CPD must attend a National Training day every two years in order to remain listed on the Database.

 Potential coaches must either be listed on British Dressage as being a group 4 rider or above and/or be training riders at Elementary Dressage at Regional level or above. Those already coaching Para dressage riders at Regional level may also apply along with those with BHSII (or above) and RDA Coaches approved by the RDA Dressage Committee.

At the last BD Para Committee meeting it was agreed that RDA Senior Coaches and RDA Fellows did not have to be approved by the RDA Dressage Committee but automatically qualify and are encouraged to enrol on the pathway.


 The Para Coaches Pathway would lead to being listed on a separate Para Coaches list on the website - this list isn’t endorsed or accredited.


The Para Coaches Convention will be held at Moulton College on April 28th 2012. The day is open to all interested in developing their skills and knowledge in Para Coaching.


Guest speakers include the leading clinical psychologist, Dr Jonathan Katz. Jonathan is currently a freelance Consultant Psychologist providing psychology support to elite able-bodied and disabled athletes. Jonathan was the Great Britain Head Quarters Psychologist for ParalympicsGB at the Athens 2004 and Beijing 2008 Summer Paralympic Games and lead Psychologist for the Turin 2006 Winter Paralympic Games. His support provision included a range of psychological issues from performance sport psychology to clinical sport psychology. He will deliver sessions to help when coaching riders with cognitive impairment as a result of their disability or as a result of an acquired brain injury. Further sessions will be taken by the World Class Programme para-equestrian physiotherapist, Helen Mathie. Helen will work with Russell Guire from Centaur Biomechanics to identify how rider analysis software can be usefully used to help improve a rider’s core strength and symmetry. Practical sessions will be taken by the World Class coaching team and will cover the training and preparation of horses for para-equestrian competition by the able bodied rider and helping a rider to goal set with effective questioning.


Tickets for the day cost £10 and more details can be obtained from Amy Cullen at British Dressage: [email protected]

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