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Coaching pathways

Coach pathways

Find out all the information you need to know about Yachting New Zealand's coaching pathway and courses. 

YNZ pathway diagram

Whether you're a volunteer looking to upskill or have your mind set on coaching for a career, we can provide the opportunities and pathways available to get you there.


Learn to sail coach

Expires: Every four years
Cost: $125 

All levels of the learn to sail coach are covered and certified in the learn to sail coach course (i.e there are not separate courses for the different levels). Click here to see the course outline here.

Buddy learn to sail coach

A buddy learn to sail coach has attended a learn to sail coach course but is under the age of 15 so, legally, is not allowed to drive a powerboat alone. Buddy coaches are advised to help out learn to sail coaches and master learn to sail coaches to gain knowledge and skills required under supervision. Once a buddy coach has turned 15, they may apply to become an assistant learn to sail coach.

Assistant learn to sail coach  

An assistant learn to sail coach has attended a learn to sail coach course but has not completed all criteria in order to become a qualified learn to sail coach or is under the age of 18. Assistant coaches may assist with teaching the Yachting New Zealand learn to sail (dinghy) programme, however, they must be teaching in conjunction with a qualified learn to sail coach.

Learn to sail coach

A learn to sail coach is a competent coach who has been trained and assessed to teach up to level 2 sailing…. fast! of the Yachting New Zealand learn to sail (dinghy) programme. The learn to sail coach qualification is gained by completing and passing a two-and-a-half day course delivered by Yachting New Zealand’s accredited coach developers. Participants are assessed on their sailing skills, teaching skills, and powerboat handling. Click here for the course outline.

Head learn to sail coach

A head learn to sail coach is a competent coach who has been a learn to sail coach for at least four years and has experience in organising Yachting New Zealand learn to sail programmes. They should be able to mentor buddy and assistant coaches within their club. The head learn to sail coach qualification is gained by completing a revalidation form when their learn to sail coach qualification is up for renewal after four years, or whenever the coach would like to apply for the qualification after at least four years. Click here to find the revalidation form.


Keelboat coach

Expires: Every four years
Cost: $180

A keelboat coach is a competent and experienced keelboat, multihull or trailer yacht coach who has been trained and assessed in the teaching of sailing to groups. A keelboat coach will be graded level 1, 2 or 3 and can teach to that level of the learn to sail keelboat programme. This is a two-and-a-half day course. Click here for  the course outline.


Race coach

Expires: Every four years
Cost: $175

This course targets coaches who are coaching learn to race sailors through to sailors of a top regional level. This course will be of a major benefit to all club’s, advancing their sailors out of learning how to sail to learning how to race and race competently. If you are the coach of green fleet sailors, this course is for you. Click here for the course outline


Regatta coach

Expires: Every four years

Please note, this programme is under review and details will be out in 2018 as to the new structure and modules that will be covered.


Performance coach

Expires: Every eight years

Please note, this programme is under review and details will be out in 2018 as to the new structure, and modules that will be covered.


Olympic coach

Expires: When you stop coaching
Cost: Free

Olympic coaches are elite-level coaches who are coaching sailors to an Olympic level. This qualification is awarded to a coach who has a vast amount of experience and success at world class events and demonstrates mentoring and leadership abilities.

Training required: Be on the carded coach scheme or similar, which involves seeking professional development in areas which the coach deems necessary at that level. Coached to success at world class events. 

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