Coaching Education

National Coaching Accreditation Scheme (NCAS)

Rowing Australia has recently completed a review of the structure, content and delivery of its coach education program with the ultimate aim of improving the National Coach Accreditation Scheme. As part of the review the previous coaching levels 1, 2, 3 and 4 have been renamed to provide guidelines for coaches to best decide which coaching level is most appropriate for them and their crews. The table below provides an overview of the coaching levels under the old NCAS program and the levels and course aims to which they relate under the revised NCAS.

Visit Rowing Australia's Learning Portal to register for Level 1, 2 and Coastal Rowing Education courses. 

Old Level

New Level


Level 1

Learn to Row Coach

The Learn to Row Coach is aimed at the novice coach. It is anticipated the Learn to Row coach will have minimal background in rowing and will coach predominantly up to junior high school level or those in their first season of rowing. Examples of this type of coach are teachers and parents with non-rowing backgrounds and current rowing club members helping at the grassroots level. This program trains coaches who will coach beginners of all ages, teaching fundamentals and introducing non-rowers to the sport. These coaches will be provided with the compliance training, interpersonal skills and low level technical development skills to deal with the groups they train.

Level 2

Club/School Coach

The Club/ School Coach is aimed at senior school and club coaches. This program trains coaches who already have some experience in the sport and aims to provide the coach with the knowledge and skills to develop athletes to their potential. They will have enough knowledge to develop an annual program, rig boats appropriately and develop younger athletes. Club/School coaches will provide coaching to the majority of athletes and will be required to tutor rowers of all ages and physical capacities. These coaches will have a basic sports science knowledge.

Level 3

Performance Coach

The Performance Coach is aimed at coaches intending to work with State level teams, junior National teams and School head coaches. This program aims to develop the coach’s concepts of applied sports science, program management skills and the ability to develop less experienced coaches within their network. These coaches also have potential to develop workshops and information sessions which are important for coach development of all levels.

Level 4

High Performance Coach

The High Performance Coach is an advanced accreditation level.  It is aimed at ‘professional’ head coaches working within high performance clubs and National Training Centre networks who are dealing with elite athletes. The High Performance Coach aims to train the coach to apply their coaching skills in a holistic manner, and work with a team of sports science experts to assist the athlete to achieve excellence. The High Performance Coach will focus on the role of the coach as a program manager, and will rely on expert coaches practising in the field to mentor High Performance Coach candidates.

In addition to renaming the levels of the NCAS, Rowing Australia has refined the
pre requisites for each level to ensure that the most appropriate and informative rowing specific program is delivered during the face to face courses. The first Learn to Row course was delivered recently and will be followed by the Club/School Coach and Performance Coach courses early in the New Year.  Pre-requisites for the Learn to Row course are outlined in the table below and will be followed by additional information for each of the other coaching course levels closer to their delivery.

Accreditation level


Learn to Row Coach

  • At least 16 years of age
  • Beginning Coaching General Principles (ASC course)
  • Terminology worksheet

It is a pre-requisite that coaches wishing to enroll in a Learn to Row course complete the Australian Sports Commission Beginning Coaching General Principles modules which are available either online for free ( or face to face via local State and Territory Sport and Recreation Departments. Please note that the Beginning Coaching General Principles course is free if accessed online but may incur a charge if obtained face-to-face.

Ron Batt
National Coach Education & Development Officer 
Rowing Australia
ph Direct (02) 6214 7528
fax          (02) 6256 5955