Every year, thousands of coaches up and down the country progress along their coaching journey. But how many have taken the next step alongside their child?
That is exactly the case for Liz Clark, who signed up for the Level 2 in Coaching Football course alongside her daughter, Amy.
Liz, a Teaching Assistant in a local primary school, has been involved in a supporting role at Sandbach United for a number of years, helping to raise funds and organise events at the club where her daughter used to play.
18 months ago, Liz and Amy successfully ran a Wildcats programme at Sandbach United, with over 20 girls taking part in sessions, and although Liz admits that she worried about her technical know-how compared to her daughter at first, she says it was thoroughly enjoyable working alongside her as they developed their technical coaching skills.
It encouraged the pair to run their own U9s teams at Sandbach, leading to the decision to do their Level 2 together.
Discussing the decision to complete their learning together, Liz said: “The course has been great, with so many different people of various ages, abilities and coaching experience, but as a group we all get on really well, helping each other out and having such good fun whilst doing it.
“It has been great for me to see how Amy has developed as a coach and young adult and l have to say l was so proud when l watched her coaching a session on the course.
“On the other hand, l know l will have embarrassed her when it came to the practical side where we took part in being coached, but deep down, l know that she is proud of little old mum for getting involved!
“The course has made me grow as a person and a coach, making me realise what an important part of my life Football has played from me being a youngster to now as Girls Football Development Officer at Sandbach United.
“The FA 4 corner model has made me realise that you don’t have to be an amazing footballer to become a good coach.”
Inspired by her decision to further her coaching journey, Liz says that she is now looking at getting involved with coaching disabled footballers, promoting girls football in local primary schools and starting a ladies social football session, with the aim of getting a team in the Inspire League later this year.
Meanwhile, Amy says it has given her confidence with her coaching both at the club and in schools, and it has led to her taking on a coaching role at the Holmes Chapel Hurricanes this season.
When asked about what it was like being on the same coach as her mum, Amy joked: “It was a bit awkward at first, but we supported each other. The other youngsters saw her as mum of the course, as well as sweets and biscuit supplier!”
On top of the family’s current coaching endeavours, Holly, younger sibling of Amy, has just completed her Level 1 course and will be helping out with Sandbach’s Under 8s team, proving that football really is a family affair.
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