Required Certification Schools

Level 1 – Foundations of Coaching Course


CHANGES in the LEVEL 1 Requirements, please read carefully!

If you are, or intend to become, a USA-Swimming Registered Coach, you will be taking an ON-LINE Course required by USA-Swimming. A short course (roughly an hour) called 101, before you step on the deck. At the end of your first year and prior to registering for your second year, you will be required to take the 2nd part, called “201”, also on-line. There is no “paper” or DVD version of this course. USA-Swimming notifies ASCA of successful completion of this course, so we can begin your certification process at the successful completion of the 101 section of the course. IF You are NOT a USA-Swimming coach, (high school, college, international) there is DVD version of the Foundations of coaching course, which you purchase from ASCA and it comes with a paper test that you complete and return to us. No pure “paper” version of the course exists any longer. The cost of manual is: $45.00

ASCA Level 1 - Online Course


Level 2 – The Stroke School

This course is the most popular course in ASCA’s history. Over 14,000 coaches have taken the Level 2 Stroke School since 1986. This current 2013 revision is currently available in two forms: a home study course that can be done “via notebook” on paper, or the preferred method, a video-based course available online. The duration of the online course is approximately 8 hours and can be accessed through the ASCA website at The manual is also available, with the corresponding test which can be taken online directly. However, we strongly urge you to consider the online video course, as it is a superior learning experience, and one of the best teachin methods available today. Once purchased, the course can be completed at your convenience according to your schedule by accessing your progress via password upon your return. The cost of manual is the same for each version: $45.00

ASCA Level 2 - Online Course

ASCA Level 2 - Hard-copy Manual

Level 3 – The Physiology of Training School

The purpose of this course is to give the coach practical knowledge on how to develop a long and short term training plan, and write workouts that will demonstrate the progression necessary for swimmers to improve. It begins with a review of the interaction of various physical and mental systems, continues with the scientific background for training, descriptions of training methodologies and terms, and then proceeds to discuss the planning of training for both new, developmental swimmers and accomplished swimmers of all ages, up to and including Senior Swimmers and Masters Swimmers. Also required by USA-Swimming for the head coach of a new club program. Once again, available in home study form via manual and once again, recommended for a live presentation if practical for the individual coach. Cost of the manual is: $45.00

ASCA Level 3 - Online Course

ASCA Level 3 - Hard-copy Manual

Level 4 – The Leadership School

Once a coach can master the basics, do a wonderful job of teaching strokes, can plan and conduct brilliant training sessions and do an expert job at running their team, there is a critical skill left…and that is LEADERSHIP. In point of fact, this might be one of the schools that is far too important to leave to last in the progression. One can argue that effective coaching is ALL about effective leadership and in that picture this is a course to take EARLY in your coaching career. Leaders are not born, they are made. This course can help make them. The course teaches specific skills and steps that you need to master to lead children or other adults, effectively. Manual based, rarely offered in live mode, the cost of the manual is: $50.00

ASCA Level 4 - Hard-copy Manual

Level 5 – The Administration School

For the coach who is, or aspires to be, the head coach of any organization, high school, college, YMCA or Club, this school covers every topic from budgeting to communications to fund-raising, to team entries of meets, to hosting meets, to working successfully with assistant coaches, volunteers and boards of directors. Frequently described as the area where coaches are “weakest” in their job, this course is designed to give new head coaches a tutorial on how to deal with administrative tasks, before they become “administrative issues”. There are sections devoted to the special needs of high school and college coaches. While not about the “fun” parts of coaching, this course is about the parts that allows a coach to get and keep and prosper in, a good job as a head coach. We recommend that the wise coach take this course LONG before they expect to “need it”. Having this information will help you GET the job you’re dreaming about. Manual based, rarely offered in live mode, the cost of the manual is: $50.00

ASCA Level 5 - Hard-copy Manual