Coaching in Scotland 2017

Coaching in Scotland 2017

This report represents the findings from the largest survey of coaches in Scotland (540 coaches), conducted across multiple sports. This research is led by UK Coaching.

The survey results provide valuable evidence for Sports Councils, Governing Bodies of Sport and other organisations who are developing workforce strategies or planning support services for our coaches.

Key findings:

Who responded to the survey:

  • 58% of coaches in the survey were male and 40% were female.
  • 13% were disabled and 97% were white.
  • Two-thirds of the coaches were aged over 35.


  • Just under three-quarters of coaches in Scotland will volunteer some their time to coach.
  • Around half of volunteers coach for three hours or less per week with the most common answer given by volunteers being two hours per week (27%).

The entry into coaching

  • Traditionally research has suggested two entry stages into coaching at 16-24 and 35-44. These are also the key ages in Scotland.
  • The most common reason for starting to coach was a love of the sport and wanting to share this with others (71%). 24% of coaches started coaching through their children and 20% wanted to start a career in coaching.

Benefits of being a coach

  • Coaches in Scotland were almost unanimous that being a coach makes them feel proud to help others and make a positive contribution to their community.

Related documents

Date published: 20 June 2017
Date updated: 19 October 2020


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