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FAQs for Coaches

Updated 01.06.2020  

We know that this is a really difficult time for everybody, but especially many of our fantastic coaches who are self-employed. We are acutely aware of how critical they are to our sport, and are looking to see how we can help you out. While we look at our own internal options, such as changes to fees and timings, here is a summary of advice that we’ve found from others so far.  

Q: Can I coach outdoors and if so what restrictions are there?

The change in the government guidance around outdoor activity means that you can coach in an outdoor environment if safe to do so in line with the following restrictions:

  • Coaching sessions can now cater for a maximum of five players (the sixth person in the group being the coach). Players can be from different households as long as social distancing guidelines are observed
  • A maximum of two players per court, on opposite sides of the net, unless coaching players from the same household
  • You operate in line with all government advice in terms of social distancing, travel, and hygiene at all times
  • Ensure you check what is allowed in the parks and open spaces of your local area as some local authorities may choose to limit what activities they permit
  • You remain two metres away from the players you are coaching at all times and adapting how you provide instructions or feedback
  • Please refer to our roadmap for guidance on equipment which remains in place – rackets should not be shared and each player should only handle their own clearly marked shuttles
  • Should you or a player you have coached start to show symptoms you should follow the government guidance around self-isolation and inform those players who you have coaches
  • A risk assessment prior to each coaching session should be undertaken to evaluate if it is safe and sensible to do so

Q: All 121 coaching with a junior should have an adult or guardian present. Are they allowed to be present as well?

A: For 1 to 1 coaching, usual safeguarding standards must apply, and ensure that a parent is supervising and all emergency contacts are up to date. Non- participating parent/guardian in attendance much adhere and maintain the 2m social distancing.

For further guidance from the Government please go here

Q: What advice or support is available to help me coach remotely during this period?  

A: We are preparing content to support coaches and players – we will start distributing this next week.   

Q: My coach licence is about to expire but I cannot coach?  

A: We are aware of a small number of coaches whose licence expired at the end of March. We will update on this situation next week  

Q: My DBS is about to expire but I cannot coach? 

A: We ask all our coaches to renew their DBS checks every 2 ½ years. We suggest that you keep your DBS up to date in order that there are no delays for you to return to coaching activity when it is possible. At the present time there are low numbers of checks being submitted and they are being processed very quickly. More information is available from:

Q: Will there be help available to coaches to restart sessions?  

A: We are exploring a package of support for clubs, counties, leagues and coaches to help get play restarted. Once finalised, details will be released via the website, social media and direct communications. 


Financial Advice

If you are self employed, read the section on the Self Employment Income Support Scheme and Sport England Community Emergency Fund 

If you are a director of your coaching company, read the section on the Job Retention Scheme 

If you fall outside these categories or need immediate help, read the section on other help 

Advice on licences, DBS, coaching tips, read the section on coaching advice 

Self Employment Income Support Scheme  

Under this scheme, self-employed coaches can apply for taxable grants worth up to 80% of the average profits. Grants are capped at £2,500 per month. This will cover the months of March, April and May and grants will start to be paid at the beginning of June. It is possible that the scheme may be extended beyond the initial three months.  

To apply you must meet the following criteria:  

  • Earn more than half of your total income from self-employment. This is based on your 2018/19 tax return and/or the average of your tax returns for 2016/17, 2017/18 and 2018/19.  
  • Your average annual trading profit must be less than £50,000. This is calculated from your 2018/19 tax return and/or the average of your tax returns for 2016/17, 2017/18 and 2018/19.  
  • More than half of your income in these periods must come from self-employment. 
  • You must have filed a tax return for 2018/19.  
  • You must continue trading in 2020/21 after the shutdown. 

The full government rules on the self employed are set out here:  

If you are eligible, you will be contacted directly by HMRC – we do not know when this will happen yet.  

If you are a company director and pay yourself a salary or dividends you will not be covered by this scheme. You may be able to get support through the Job Retention Scheme – check below  

Job Retention Scheme 

Self-employed limited company directors, even if you are the only employee, can furlough the PAYE element of your income, i.e,. get 80% of your salary up to £2,500/month. Dividends are not eligible for consideration under this scheme.  

What other help is available?    

All Government advice supporting businesses can be found at:   

A useful source of advice and support that many of you will be familiar with is      

The self employed grant will be released in June. How do I survive until then?   

Government advice is:    

  • Take a three month mortgage holiday.  
  • Get a government sponsored loan from your bank. 
  • You don’t have to pay VAT for the quarterly payment to 30th June 2020 but you will need to catch up by the end of the tax year (5th April 2021). 

 And here are some good housekeeping actions to manage your finances:  

  • Focus on cash flow management. 
  • Know what your fixed costs are and when you will need to pay them. 
  • Delay committing to any expenditure that you can. 
  • Chase all outstanding debts. 
  • Invoice for all services already delivered and then ensure that these invoices are paid. 
  • If you are receiving funding, submit any required reports on time to make sure that you receive future instalments on time. 
  • Talk to your bank manager and see if they will offer you an overdraft facility (even if you don’t need one right now). Some banks have agreed not to charge fees for overdrafts in this  period so it is worth checking with your bank. 
  • If you have loan repayments the lender may be willing to delay the capital repayment.