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Prepare now to become a National Coach

Obvious things to do now:
  • Continue to get coaching experience
  • Take the coach course for the level you are coaching or higher.
Not so obvious things to do now: 
  • Learn the Laws of the Game. Do so seriously. One of the five exams at the National Coaching Course is on the Laws of the Game. The exam is 100 questions and is not superficial. The best way to learn the Laws of the Game is to take AYSO referee training. If you do nothing else, read the Laws of the Game regularly.
  • Keep up your own fitness. The National Coaching Course is a week long and includes daily field sessions, probably in hot weather. The next item below also requires fitness.
  • Develop your own soccer skills. One of the five exams at the National Coaching Course is on soccer skills. You will be required to play four 20-minute games in a row in which evaluators will be scoring your skills, both technical (i.e., ball skills) and tactical (based on what is taught in the course). At a given game, the evaluator will be looking for specific technical and/or tactical skills; the catch is that you won’t know what which skills he or she is looking for.
To become a National Coach requires that you take the 7-day National Coaching Course and pass the five exams with a minimum of 55 points out of 100 on each exam, and with a minimum of 400 total points out of 500. The five exams are: coaching theory (very hard), anatomy & physiology (easy), Laws of the Game (very hard), conduct a 20-minute training session on a randomly assigned topic related to coaching theory taught in the course (you will be given adequate preparation time and you can consult with instructors), soccer skills (hard if you don’t have fitness and skills!). With the point system described, you can score very high on some exams to make up for doing poorly on others.
The course is challenging, stressful, and exhilarating. Go for it!
Alan Lee, National Coach (2010)