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12 Jul 2022 | 10:10

Nominations for the 25th UK Coaching Awards are open, including for the inspiring ‘Change a Life’ category which showcases how specific individuals have used sport and physical activity to improve the lives of under-represented or vulnerable individuals. 

In 2021 England Adaptive Para-Surf Manager, Andrew Joyce (pictured below), was named winner of the prestigious ‘sport for development’ award after he worked to ensure adaptive surfing was still possible despite the complications of the pandemic. Based in Dorset, he helped to arrange training sessions for small groups of adaptive surfers, and led the first Adaptive Surfing Roadshow in the UK, to allow more disabled people to try adaptive surfing for the first time. 

Also shortlisted were Joe Lockley, whose Bright Star Boxing Academy in Shropshire supports vulnerable local people, and multi-sport coach Rhona Wilson, from Cowdenbeath, whose coaching roles centre on working with young people who have barriers in their life which prevent them from reaching their full potential.


With 13 categories open, the awards – in their milestone 25th year – seek to reward the achievements of coaches who go the “extra mile” in helping people build a healthy relationship with physical activity and sport. 

UK Coaching CEO Mark Gannon commented: “The UK Coaching Awards is an opportunity to recognise those coaches who live and breathe their craft. The Awards celebrate coaches who go the extra mile to deliver excellent experiences for their participants and teams. 

“We’ll hear the inspiring stories of how people have achieved, overcome and developed as a result of their coach. It takes lots of perseverance and time to become a great coach and every year we are astounded at those who through self-determination and investment in themselves and their practice, have become truly great coaches.

Andrew Joyce

“Being a great coach is not about winning, it’s about inspiring and supporting the person, team or people in front of you. It’s about knowing what makes them tick, and how to get the best out of them.” 

  • Community Coach of the Year – Children and Young People 
  • Community Coach of the Year – Adults 
  • Young Coach of the Year 
  • Change a Life Award 
  • Talent Development Coach of the Year 
  • High Performance Coach of the Year 
  • Online Coach of the Year 
  • Coaching Podcast of the Year 
  • Inclusive Coaching 
  • Coach Developer of the Year 
  • Lifetime Achievement Award* 
  • Coaching Technology of the Year* 
  • And the Coaching Chain*, which recognises contributions made by individual coaches throughout an elite athlete’s life in helping them achieve their potential. 

*Note these award categories are not open for public nominations. 

Mark acknowledged: “The last couple of years haven’t been easy. The latest data from Sport England reported over six million people gave up their time to lead activity sessions in the 12-month period between November 2020 and 2021, and many of these will have been coaches. That’s why we would like the public to really get behind our amazing coaches and show them how much they mean to us.


“There has never been a more important time to celebrate your coach, and what better way than nominating them for a prestigious UK Coaching Award? I look forward to reading all the nominations and hope that the public once again makes this a difficult task for the panel to choose our winners.” 

Sarah Mortiboys, Strategic Lead: Sport for Development & Education at UK Coaching, added: "The coaches, leaders and volunteers who both champion and support the delivery of excellent provision across the sport for development landscape should be recognised for the difference that they make to the lives of all those they connect with through the power of sport. It is these individuals that help to change the lives of so many for the better."

Public nominations for the awards will close at 10am on September 12th followed by an independent and impartial judging process. The 25th UK Coaching Awards will take place at The Queens Hotel, Leeds on December 6th. 

Make your nomination here.