October 18, 2015
Assistant Director – Club Sports
University of Michigan
As a Club Sports program shapes policies and procedures, the role of coaches in the program is often one that comes with a great deal of concerns and question marks.
Will the University recognize them in any capacity, and are they covered under the University’s liability insurance? Do we want to associate the University and our department with someone who has such a loose affiliation? What are we going to require of the coach to make sure our students are safe? What are we going to require of the coach to keep ourselves covered? Who is going to “supervise” the coach?
Many departments tend to think of Club Sports coaches as a source of risk, or a liability for the department and their program. But handled correctly, the relationship with a non-University employed coach can be a great asset to the program and to the teams with which they work. Read more
December 08, 2011
Can a coach safely do double duty?
Program Coordinator — Aquatics
University of Western Ontario
It sounded like a watermelon hitting the sidewalk. I knew something was wrong before I even looked up. I was on deck in a supervisory role during a diving practice. The Coach was working with his athletes and there was a Lifeguard guarding the pool as well. I remember being at the lifeguard station tidying up and hearing usual pool sounds including the sound of divers rebounding off the end of the springboards. Then — thunk. I began to move towards the diving boards and saw the Coach in the water and the Lifeguard en route. As I approached the scene for a brief moment I was fuming — wondering why the Coach in the water before the Lifeguard. But then I realized the Coach was in the water because it was his athlete he was supervising, and he knew all too well the sound of a diver in trouble.
Lifeguards use all of their senses while on duty — we observe directly with our eyes, use our hearing to listen for the unusual, employ our sense of smell when people decide to toss eucalyptus (or urinate) onto sauna rocks, and our sense of touch when moving across an uneven or slippery pool deck before entering the water to perform a rescue. Following an emergency situation or rescue it is not uncommon for a Lifeguard to vividly remember a specific sight, or smell, or sound — forever. That memory becomes embedded in your brain and gets tucked away for future reference. The diving Coach knew that sound and the Lifeguard did not, but certainly does now.