Spirit Coach Education/AACCA

Coaches have a professional responsibility to participate in educational opportunities to increase their coaching knowledge, improve coaching skills, and stay abreast of the trends in their athletic activity. Not only is this an expectation of the National Federation, but the ICCA has also communicated this responsibility every year in their rules meeting.

The Iowa Cheerleading Coaches’ Association offers the following educational opportunities to coaches:

  • Spring Coaches’ Conference
    • AACCA training
    • National speakers
    • Other training
  • Online National Federation & IHSAA/ICCA Rules Meeting
  • Free Fall Clinics
  • National Federation “Concussion in Sports – What You Need to Know” free video information

The National Federation of High Schools is committed to providing quality education for athletic coaches. All coaching education courses are offered online at www.nfhslearn.com. Following is the list of courses offered by the National Federation for spirit coaches.

  • Core Courses (these courses should be completed first)
    • Fundamentals of Coaching
    • First Aid, Health and Safety for Coaches
  • Sport Specific Courses
    • Fundamentals of Coaching Cheer & Dance
    • AACCA ($75.00) – must renew every four years to stay certified
  • Free Courses
    • A Guide to Heat Acclimatization and Heat Illness Prevention
    • A Guide to Sports Nutrition
    • Coaching Unified Sports
    • Concussion in Sports – What You Need to Know
    • Creating a Safe and Respectful Environment
    • Sportsmanship
    • The Role of the Parent in Sport
  • Elective Courses
    • Coaching Sports in Middle School
    • Engaging Effectively with Parents
    • Strength and Conditioning
    • Teaching and Modeling Behavior
    • Teaching Sports Skills

The National Federation offers an Accredited Interscholastic Coach Certification for interested coaches. Certification is not required for spirit coaches in Iowa, but some coaches complete certification as part of their professional development. Coaches interested in obtaining this certification can find more information at http://www.nfhslearn.com/Certification.aspx. Coaches must take the two core courses, a sport specific course, and the concussion course. The cost of this certification is $120 ($145 if AACCA is chosen instead of Fundamentals of Coaching). There is also a certification processing fee of $10.00.

When signing up to take an online National Federation Course please do the following:

  1. Login to www.nfhslearn.com
  2. Create an account (once account is created, sign in using email address and password)
  3. Select course
  4. Click “Purchase” for the appropriate course
  5. Select the first option listed on the page “I am purchasing a course for myself”
  6. Choose your state and click “Save” to add the item to your cart
  7. Select “Checkout” or “Continue Shopping” and follow on screen instructions
  8. When finished with the course print two copies of the certificate of completion
    1. Give one copy to your athletic director/principal/school for your work records
    2. Keep one copy for your records