For Coaches Reporting a coach for bad practise?!

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LucyTRA

Coach
Gymnast
Judge
Nov 20, 2013
445
29
London, UK
I'm a level one coach and trampoline gymnast. I set up the trampoline club at my university and I am the chair of it, as well as coaching there, but in order for me to coach because I'm only a level one, we need a level 2 or higher present. The university appointed this girl who is a level 3 coach but she is slowly driving me insane and I don't know what to do.

She took her level three several years ago when it was all on the old system before it was endorsed by UKCC. She also hasn't used her coaching skills in a club environment before (ever, only rec) and was never in a club herself, so she has no idea how they are run, and won't listen to me as she views me as her junior.

This is all irritating but not really a reason for taking any action, however, she also is INCREDIBLY lax about safety, and that is where my concerns lie.
She allows people to train with piercings and jewelry on, and for Muslim girls who wear headscarves to train with pins at their throats.

She also allows gymnasts to lounge on the end decks leaving no spotters for entire 2 hour (sometimes longer) sessions.

She leaves the room when she is supposed to be coaching, leaving me alone (which invalidates her insurance, and mine!) with everyone bouncing.

She wears jewelry herself when coaching and supporting.

She spends a lot of time chatting with her friends who also work in the sports centre, which this week led to her failing to mat me for a crash dive (thankfully I didn't really need it) and subsequently a ball out (I really did need it) but refused to admit that she was too distracted to throw the mat in

She encourages people to perform skills which are recommended by BG to only be done with a mat (and she trains in bad habits)

She can't remember how to coach a lot of moves, and will just hazard a guess. Example; this week I asked her if I could do some progressions for Cody, and she asked me to remind her what a Cody was. I did so, and she then said "I can't remember how to teach that, but I'll look it up on the internet and we can do it next week"!!!!

She leaves metal chairs around the edges of the trampolines in junior sessions and encourages the kids to stand on them

I was advised by a coach at a competitive club I train at (who also happened to be the tutor for my level 1, and the level 2 course I'm enrolled on but haven't started yet) to report her to British gymnastics, but I'm not sure what to do. I don't want to be responsible for her loosing her job, but I also don't want her coaching at my club, and I certainly don't want anyone getting hurt.

What to do?!
 

hawaii_gymnast

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Gymnast
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Mar 30, 2010
647
Canada
You don't want to be the one who makes her lose her job but you also don't want something really bad to happen that affects your insurance/ hers, an athlete or the club itself knowing you could have done something about it.
 

txgymfan

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Sep 4, 2008
3,561
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Please report her to someone. BG or the manger of the sports center or both. You don't want someone getting seriously hurt and you could be potentially liable for not reporting a situation you knew was dangerous. Please report it before you coach with her again and get documentation, send a note via email with a read receipt or get a signed note from someone acknowledging that you have done something. If necessary call in sick for your next shift so you can tell someone before you work with her again.
 

Faith

Coach
Proud Parent
Gymnast
Fan
Aug 17, 2011
2,179
I'd speak to the university staff who appointed her. I'd write your concerns down and hand it to them, and also give them any documentation bg produces re jewellery and your other points.

As well as you doing your l2, get a few of your uni club members to start coaching too. Back in my day the uni paid for coaching courses so they should be keen. Once you graduate for the club to continue you'll need younger people.
 

LucyTRA

Coach
Gymnast
Judge
Nov 20, 2013
445
29
London, UK
Thank you for all your replies guys.

Faith, the member of staff who appointed her has moved on to another role, and her replacement is a bit a of a shrinking violet but also good friends with the coach in question. There are also issues with reporting her to the university itself because we have butted heads since the start, (she doesn't like me coaching at all, as it makes her feel 'sidelined'. She was put out that everyone assumed she was another student (she IS a student, just not at my Uni) because I was wearing a Uni leotard and she was wearing casual clothes) and we have had more than one showdown over who is in charge. (I know that she trumps me as a coach, but it's my club)

By that vein, I don't really feel that I can take my concerns directly to the Uni, as I will just look like I'm out to get her, and it's also much more likely to get back to her that it was me who said something.

Re; training other members as coaches, I wish that was an option! I only set the club up in September so we don't have many members and we only have 1 who isn't starting from scratch. The Uni are paying for my coaching courses but that was like squeezing blood from a stone!

I will look into what would happen were I to take my concerns to BG.
 

Faith

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Fan
Aug 17, 2011
2,179
OK. Does your uni have a student union? They may have a Sports committee, with a sports president (or some such title- it's been a long time!)

Could you make an appointment and ask for their advice? It's got to be within their remit to make sure students are safe and clubs are well run. I can't remember the details of setting up a Uni club, but don't you need to liase with the sports union so you come under their banner and can have a stall at freshers fayres etc?

Could you ask your coach from your competitive club to come along and run a session or two as a guest coach? At least she'll see how this other coach practices and back you up with BG, or report her for you.

Oh and go to the scottish open if it's still going, fab weekend :)
 
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SXS524

Coach
Gymnast
Jul 12, 2013
120
Sounds like it would be difficult but have you mentioned any of your concerns to her? Any chance she's unaware that her insurance becomes invalid when she walks out the room etc? I definitely think you need to do something as her coaching as well as her lack of safety sounds very dangerous. Especially no spotters! I used to do trampolining and I would have refused to train if I were in that position. I used to do trampolining at uni too and the coaches were much better on the safety side like making sure we always had spotters, mats round the trampolines etc but did encourage people to try skills they weren't ready for... they ended up with at least 3 pretty serious injuries (one girl had to have knee surgery!)

Hope you manage to find a solution. I have to say I've been tempted to report a coach to BG before for dangerous coaching but the situation wasn't as bad as what you described. I'd be interested to know what the procedures like and how BG would handle a situation like that.
 
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Deleted member D3987

Thank you for all your replies guys.

Faith, the member of staff who appointed her has moved on to another role, and her replacement is a bit a of a shrinking violet but also good friends with the coach in question. There are also issues with reporting her to the university itself because we have butted heads since the start, (she doesn't like me coaching at all, as it makes her feel 'sidelined'. She was put out that everyone assumed she was another student (she IS a student, just not at my Uni) because I was wearing a Uni leotard and she was wearing casual clothes) and we have had more than one showdown over who is in charge. (I know that she trumps me as a coach, but it's my club)

By that vein, I don't really feel that I can take my concerns directly to the Uni, as I will just look like I'm out to get her, and it's also much more likely to get back to her that it was me who said something.

Re; training other members as coaches, I wish that was an option! I only set the club up in September so we don't have many members and we only have 1 who isn't starting from scratch. The Uni are paying for my coaching courses but that was like squeezing blood from a stone!

I will look into what would happen were I to take my concerns to BG.


seems to me that this should be reported to your National Governing Body. If it's BG, they are pretty strict about the kind of stuff you described.
 

iwannacoach

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Gymnast
Mar 25, 2012
2,877
region II
...........she also is INCREDIBLY lax about safety, and that is where my concerns lie........

........I was advised by a coach at a competitive club I train at to report her to British gymnastics, but I'm not sure what to do. I don't want to be responsible for her loosing her job, but I also don't want her coaching at my club, and I certainly don't want anyone getting hurt.

What to do?!

You have a choice to make. You can choose to care for and protect the kids or you can choose to protect and be loyal to a person who deserves neither.

Don't delay, because you will wish you hadn't if/when you suffer through a slow motion moment where a child is falling or flying off the trampoline face first and heading for one of those chairs.

That feeling, and the aftermath, will haunt you far worse than the memory of an incompetent coach being sacked because you did the right thing. Geeze, considering the way she behaves on the job, she likely doesn't care about keeping it anyway.
 

LucyTRA

Coach
Gymnast
Judge
Nov 20, 2013
445
29
London, UK
We have a student union but they don't really have anything to do with sports... That side of things is organised by actual appointed members of staff (I'm inclined to think that this is because I go to a 'lower-end' university, where they don't really know anything about BEING a university, in terms of experience, not just academics)

The coach from (one of) my BG clubs is based really far away from my Uni, so getting her in to coach is not really an option. The club I compete for is in the same borough as my Uni and the coach there has come in to observe a session (he was NOT impressed) and has offered to have her come in to our club for some extra training on how to coach in a club environment.

This seems like an absolutely wonderful idea until I mention the fact that he also happens to be my boyfriend, so although the message of "I don't think you're a very good coach, here's some free training" won't be coming directly from me, it gets back to me pretty quickly.

I have tried mentioning these things to her in as offhand and non confrontational way as possible but she still claims that I'm undermining her. I basically can't tell her anything.

Based on what you guys are saying I think I'm gonna go ahead and take some advice from BG.
 

Faith

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Aug 17, 2011
2,179
One other thing- if your user name is your real name, this is a public forum and an idle google will find this thread easily.

If she does read this (or anyone from bg for that matter) it's likely things will go pair shaped. If that's not what you want might be worth pm'ing a mod to change your username.
 
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DeterminedGymnast

I would report her to BG. Why should you support a coach who risks gymnast's lives? I would definitely report her, as she doesn't deserve to keep this job. Doesn't seem like she really wants to, anyway.
 

LucyTRA

Coach
Gymnast
Judge
Nov 20, 2013
445
29
London, UK
so my main coach came along to watch me train at uni on tuesday... he said that he wanted to throw up within about 10 minutes. I've now spoken to the sports co-ordinator woman at uni who asked me to compile a list of my safety concerns, which I did, complete with references to BG policy for each point demonstrating why each thing is dangerous. I ended up with about 20 different points! Anyway, it's kinda been taken out of my hands now, which is a relief. Now I just have to wait and see what gets done about it!
 
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