ICOACHKIDS+ project aims to address the current lack of coach education resources to support coaches working with young people. It will use sound and evidence-based principles of adolescent participant development to develop a series of IOs:


IO1 – Enhancing Boys and Girls Sport Participation in the EU Report: Rates, Motivations, Barriers and Ways Forward.


This research report will be developed over two discrete phases. During Phase 1, current participation rates of adolescents in organised sport across Europe will be evaluated. Data will be gathered and collated from each of the key sporting governing bodies of the partner countries involved in the project to determine participation rate of adolescences in organised sport. Following this initial stage, phase 2 will consist of a further research wave to determine youth participants motivation and reasons to participate in organised sport or the perceived barriers and rationale for not participating. This will be an online questionnaire; therefore, this would be relatively easy to distribute across a large international cohort. Focus groups with both youths who do and do not participate in organised sport will also be conducted. Findings of the study would be analysed by gender and used to inform the content of the MOOC #1.

OUTPUT: Youth Sport Participation Trends in Europe. The first of its kind, this unique study led by Leeds Beckett University, and supported by the ICCE – collected data about 5.5 million young people from across 29 European countries and 18 different sports. Findings show how girls are four times less likely than boys to engage in organized sport, and that participation peaks at 14 years of age. DOWNLOAD THE REPORT HERE

OUTPUT: Enhancing Youth Sport Participation in the EU: Rates, Motivations, Barriers and Ways Forward. This report presents the findings of a unique series of two multi-country and multi-sport studies investigating the participation rates of children and young people in organised youth sport and the reasons why they stop taking part. Recommendations for all stakeholders follow. DOWNLOAD THE EXECUTIVE SUMMARY HERE.


IO2 – Beyond Performance: Guidelines for the Development of Effective Holistic Talent Development Environments in Sport for Boys and Girls.


This research report will also be developed over two discrete phases. Phase 1 will evaluate current knowledge and practices of talent identification and development practices in youth sport via a systematic review of existing literature using a criteria-based search of electronic databases. The search strategy will combine terms relevant to talent development in youth sport. PRISMA analysis will be used to assess study quality. The second phase will comprise of primary research to determine athletes’ perceptions of talent development environments (programmes) across Europe. This will consist of an online questionnaire; therefore, this would be relatively easy to distribute across a large international cohort. Findings of the study would be analysed by both gender and sport, with the findings used to inform the content of the MOOC #2.

OUTPUT: Beyond Performance: Guidelines to Create Holistic Talent Development Environments Modern day high-performance sport is arguably more competitive than ever before. National teams, clubs and sport programmes therefore focus on identifying talented athletes and developing them into the sporting superstars of tomorrow through structured talent systems and tailored talent development environments (TDEs). Recently, however, concerns have been raised over the short and long-term physical, psychological and social impact of young athletes participating in the talent development process. This executive summary presents the findings of two studies conducted as part of ICK+ to examine good practice in TDEs across Europe, and explores in detail how they create the conditions for holistic development. ACCESS AND DOWNLOAD THE EXECUTIVE SUMMARY HERE.

You can access and download the FULL REPORT HERE

Executive Summary also available in (Click to access):


IO3 – From the Ground Up: Case Studies of Effective Holistic Development Environments in Sport for Boys and Girls.


During the production of IO2, the research team will select a number of exemplary TEDs (according to previously agreed criteria) and conduct detailed case studies of the features of these environments which contribute to their effectiveness. Case studies will be selected from all seven partner countries. Questionnaires and interviews with stakeholders as well as site-visits will be conducted. Each environment will be considered separately first to then proceed to create a working model of an effective TED that can act as guidance for clubs and federation to develop their own.

The Case Studies of Holistic Development can be downloaded here.


IO4 – iCoachKids+ Website and YouTube Channel: A one stop shop for all coaches working with adolescents to learn and share.


The existing iCoachKids website will be re-vamped to incorporate the additionall age group covered by iCoachKids+ (12-18). Its interactive functionality will be enhanced to allow the development of a bigger community of practice and increase sharing between coaches across the EU. Likeiwse, the current iCoachKids YouTube channel (over 100 educational videos to date) will be enhanced with the videos from iCoachKids+ MOOC#1 and #2 (which will become #4 and #5 in the iCoachKis series). In addition, videos from the three forthcoming iCoachKids International Conferences to be hosted during the lifespan of the project will be uploaded to the channel.

This website serves as the project website for ICOACHKIDS+

The YouTube channel can be accessed here.


IO5 – Two Massive Open Online Courses (FREE e-learning) to support the mass training of a specialist youth sport coaching workforce.


The centre piece of iCoachKids+ will be the development of two MOOCs. Using the research-evidence gained from IO1, IO2 and IO3, the MOOCs will support coaches create appropriate youth sport environment to foster participation and personal development. MOOC 1 will focus on “Promoting and maximising sport engagement in adolescence and beyond” and MOOC 2 will explore the topic of “Developing Effective Talent Development Environments”


It is estimated that each MOOC will be worth one ECTS credit and require between 20 and 25 hours to complete. MOOCs are an inclusive and cost-effective way to reach wider audiences at a time and place of their choice. This will facilitate access to learning for all across the EU and beyond. The MOOCs will be accessible to coaches individually or VET organisations/providers will be able to adopt them as part of their existing or newly developed training opportunities for children’s coaches. In this way, the MOOCs can be used both as part of Initial and Continuous VET. The video elements of the MOOCs will be recorded in English and contain subtitles in Spanish, German and French. The MOOCs will also be a great tool to contribute to the development of key transversal competences such as language proficiency and ICT literacy. The scripts and resources accompanying each MOOC will also be made available so organisations can customize them if so they wish and even develop face-to-face courses based on them.

The MOOCs are available here.


IO6 – Study Guides and Infographics: Accompanying learning materials for the online courses.


The study guides and infographics will contain all the necessary information and support materials required for coaches to complete the MOOCs. However, they will be designed in a manner that renders them a stand alone product. This means that individual coaches not wishing to complete the MOOCs will still be able to access the support guides and infographics separately and achieve the learning outcomes independently. Likewise, VET organisations will be able to access these additional resources and materials and use them to support new or existing qualifications. The guides will also be translated to the four aforementioned languages and be made available independently of the course.

The Study Guide for MOOC 4 is available here.

The Study Guide for MOOC 5 is available here.

Enhancing Youth Sport Participation in
the EU Infographics can be downloaded here:

Disclaimer: The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflect the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.