Re: Teaching Aikido - Require Coaching Course?
Generally speaking, in response to Carsten and Andrew, the courses/modules to which Andrew refers are not necessarily sport-specific. An example would be the "Task 1 - Training Energy Systems" module, which described basic muscle physiology, how the energy systems (aerobic, anaerobic lactic, anaerobic alactic) blended through a continuum of effort levels and effort durations, periodised through the year (or several years) to provide peak performance. Each sport/activity will have different physiological requirements along the endurance spectrum - power lifters don't need to be able to go for 2 hours 8 minutes, while an international marathoner does. So coaches attending the module would develop their own training program, submit it to their national sport body for evaluation by experts in the sport, and to the presenter of the module for his evaluation from the perspective of the presenter - i.e., is this coach's program scientifically valid?
The 20 (or more, now) tasks involve several areas - endurance, strength, nutrition, "cross" training, biomechanics, "plan, implement, and evaluate a training camp" (and a competitive tour). long term athlete development, understanding the national sport system, leadership, sport psychology for the athlete, sport psychology for the coach, and then a few sport-specific modules.
At the "Level 4-5" coaching expertise level, you could almost say that the coach is equivalent to "shidoin" for his or her sport. Possibly even a "shihan," in a competitive sport, where people win (or not) by as little as 1/100 or 1/1000 of a second, banging on the edges of human capability.
As with any qualification system, though, going through the courses/modules and getting a "level" designation in either the old or new system at the NCCP doesn't necessarily imply that you're a good coach - just as an expert athlete doesn't necessarily make an expert coach - someone who has a 5th dan in Aikido doesn't necessarily know how to teach it, but if he or she attended some coach-training, he or she might understand better how other people learn things, and become a better Aikido instructor.
Clear as mud?