Coronavirus (Covid-19) Information

Module JXH-2028:
Prac Water Based Lead & Coach

Module Facts

Run by School of Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences

10 Credits or 5 ECTS Credits

Semester 1 & 2

Organiser: Mrs Trys Burke

Overall aims and purpose

The outdoors is a wonderful and inspirational classroom and leading, guiding, and coaching in this environment is a joy and a privilege. The aim of this module is to provide students with the experience of leading and coaching in a practical water-based environment from which the scientific studies of human responses to the outdoors and of performance in the outdoors can be applied.

During year 2, you will extend your personal skills and learn how to lead safely and effectively in this ever-changing and dynamic environment. Using relevant coaching techniques and strategies, you will also learn to profile a client in order to create a safe and appropriate development program for them. You will learn to plan and carry out risk assessments with their needs first and foremost in your mind.

Within a very small geographical area, North Wales provides the paddlesport coach and leader with an array of possibilities, coaching on a mountain river in the morning and later teaching surfing on the Anglesey coastline in the afternoon. From wild swimming in the Menai Straits to coasteering off the West coast of Anglesey - you will experience how a leader changes their leadership style to suit diverse water-based environments and challenging activities.

As a Year 2 student, you can expect to learn to lead and towards the end of the year will be assessed by British Canoeing Assessors for the Paddlesport Instructor and Paddlesport Leader Awards. You will be assessed on how well they lead your own groups on the beautiful estuaries and waterways of Conwy and Porthmadog to coaching a group of beginners on the stunning Llyn Padarn at the foot of Snowdon. **If you already hold these qualifications arrangements can be made for you to work towards your next level of qualification.

Course content

The Practical Water-Based Leading and Coaching module ensures that all students learn to apply sport scientific theory to their practical leadership and coaching activities, ensuring they continue to thrive as an academic, both during their time as an undergraduate and beyond. Year 2 will focus on the further development of practical skills associated with canoeing and whitewater kayaking and introduce coasteering and wild swimming. Practical activity will be supported by classroom sessions aimed at developing awareness and understanding associated with safe and effective coaching or leadership in canoeing and kayaking. Skill development will focus on the competencies required to either lead and/or coach groups in inland and coastal environments. Participation in this module will require a commitment of time and effort by all participants in an outdoor, potentially hazardous environment.

Throughout this practical module, there is the opportunity to gain nationally recognised governing body awards from British Canoeing for both personal performance, safety and rescue training, and coaching and leadership. Please note that it is not expected that you will do all of the awards listed below, the certificates you choose will depend on whether you wish to develop your personal skills or coaching/leadership skills. If you choose personal development you will most likely complete one or more discipline-specific awards. If you choose coach/leadership development you will need to have completed the Personal Perfomance 'Explore' award and the Foundation Safety and Rescue Training in Year 1 and register in early Spring of Year 2 for the Paddlesport Leader and Paddlesport Instructor Awards. Please note these certificates and awards are not compulsory, some students do not intend to work in the outdoor sector and so do not need the qualifications. All students will complete the courses as part of the module but can only be certified by British Canoeing if registered beforehand. See below for the current fees and the dates you will need to pay them by. As previously mentioned if you already hold these awards an individual development plan will be made for you to help you move onto your next level of qualification

Personal Performance Certificates

  • The Explore Award £7 (£6 for BC members) - End of Year 1 or as soon as the standard is achieved in Year 2
  • Discipline-Specific certificate(s), £25 each (£12.50 for BC members) - as soon as the standard is achieved

Instructor and Leadership Awards

  • Paddlesport Instructor Award (2-day combined training and assessment), £45 registration plus £20 course contribution - May
  • Paddlesport Leader Award (2-day assessment course), £39 Registration plus £10 course contribution - May

For all coaching and leadership awards, British Canoeing Membership is required for insurance purposes. This annual fee of £45 ensures you are insured as a BC coach/leader and allows you to run assessment courses for the introductory paddling awards - very useful if you intend to be teaching freshers in the canoe club. See the British Canoeing Website for more details

Assessment Criteria


Basic awareness and understanding associated with safe participation in canoeing and kayaking.

NB. To ensure learning outcomes are met and health and safety are maintained, practical sessions are compulsory. If you miss more than two practical sessions without genuine mitigating circumstances you will fail the module (due to not meeting the learning outcomes).


Good awareness and understanding associated with safe and effective coaching or leadership in canoeing and kayaking. Good understanding and appropriate decision-making in relation to the safe and sustainable participation of others in these activities. A good ability to assess the development needs of their own and others regarding canoeing and kayaking activities.


Excellent awareness and understanding associated with safe and effective coaching or leadership in canoeing and kayaking. Excellent understanding and appropriate decision-making in relation to the safe and sustainable participation of others in these activities. An excellent ability to assess the development needs of their own and others with regard to canoeing and kayaking activities.

Learning outcomes

  1. Participate capably and effectively, and contribute positively to the group, whilst taking part in a variety of water-based activities on inland and in coastal environments

  2. Understand and apply appropriate decision-making in relation to the safe and sustainable participation of others in these activities.

  3. Accurately assess the development needs of their own (or another's) with regard to canoeing and kayaking activities.

Assessment Methods

Type Name Description Weight
ESSAY Leadership & Barriers to Performance

Your first assignment explores leadership and its effect on a client’s sustained participation in water-based adventure sports. Specifically, it focuses on a leader’s decision making and ability to address various barriers an individual faces when participating in outdoor and adventurous environments.

Task: Examine your reflection sheets from the three days of activity in block 1 and identify any situations in which you (or a classmate) experienced a drop in performance due to some sort of barrier, then complete the following:

  1. Describe the situation and explain the factors that led to the observed drop in performance? (100 words)
  2. Consider the actions of your tutor(s); what did they do to dispel (or maybe even purposely create) the barrier that affected your (or your classmate’s) performance? (300 words)
  3. Based on empirical evidence, suggest:
  4. tools a leader could use to help help reduce the barriers experienced above (300 words)
  5. reasons why a leader might create a barrier on purpose (300 words)

(Total: 1000 Words)

Submission: Your essay must contain 1000 words (give or take 10%), be double-line spaced and of font size 12. The deadline for submission is 9am on Monday 19th October 2020. Trys will be available for one-on-one tutorials directly after the handout of this assignment at the assignment brief seminar on 12/10/20 (in the library, top floor at Normal Site) at 11am and by arrangement until the deadline.

Assignment Specific Assessment Criteria and Percentage Weightings

  1. Used clearly expressed language in either Welsh or English (5%).
  2. Use correct layout and referencing as per SSHES handbook available on Blackboard (10%).
  3. Provide a description of the situation and a detailed explanation of the factors that led to the drop in performance (10%).
  4. Consider the actions of the tutor(s) and provide a detailed discussion regarding what actions the leader took to dispel (or create) the barrier affecting performance (25%).
  5. Provide an analysis of empirical evidence to suggest:
  6. (a) tools a leader could use to help reduce the barriers experienced above (25%).
  7. (b) reasons why a leader might create a barrier on purpose (25%)
DEMONSTRATION/PRACTICE Personal Development Video

This assignment will demonstrate your ability to accurately assess your (or another’s) development needs with regard to your (their) canoeing and kayaking performance. It will also provide evidence of improvement in your personal performance or coaching performance between blocks 2 and 3.

Task: Specifically, you must complete and submit a short video (min 5 – max 10 minutes) demonstrating and explaining a skill or technique identified as a weakness in your (or another’s) personal development plan. Work on your personal development plan will take place throughout the year, but a seminar to identify an appropriate technique for you to use for this assignment specifically will take place on 23/03/21 at 11am in the library, top floor, on Normal Site.

You will then be expected to organise yourselves so that a video can be made, either in the pool or at Llyn Padarn. It could be on a skill required on the water or may be something more easily demonstrated as a dry land drill. Try to help each other or ask a friend to help you hold your phone/camera. If you do go on the water or in the pool remember DO NOT DO SO ON YOUR OWN, just in case!

Submission: Your video must be submitted via Teams by 9am on Monday 19th April 2021. Please also submit a short note (100 words max) via Turnitin explaining why you feel this skill or technique was important to your (or the other person’s) development.

Please remember the University is very strict on due dates and times. Video submissions handed in after this time will be capped at 40% as per the University’s policy unless mitigating has been sought from SSHES Admin. One-on-one tutorials are available at any time by arrangement from when the assignment is sent on 23/03/21 up until the deadline. These can be via Zoom during the Easter holidays if necessary.

Assignment Specific Assessment Criteria and Percentage Weightings

  1. Video: Involves good use of clearly expressed language in either Welsh or English (10%).
  2. Video: Presentation adheres to current BC guidelines on delivery e.g., the first demonstration is silent; delivery involves an introduction, demonstration(s), an explanation, a period of activity and a summary (20%)
  3. Video: The demonstrations are clear and technically accurate (20%)
  4. Video: The explanation provides evidence that the student understands the skill/technique and its uses and nuances (20%).
  5. Video: The practice activity is appropriate for the development of the skill/technique in question (20%)
  6. Written note: provides justification as to why this skill/technique is important for the student’s paddling and/or coaching development (10%)

Teaching and Learning Strategy

Private study
  • 20-30 minutes of reflection in your Journals at home following each practical session
  • 10 hours of private study required for assignment 1
  • 10 hours of private work put into the production of assignment 2
  • 3-hour seminar explaining assignment 1
  • 3-hour seminar working on personal performance profiles for assignment 2
Practical classes and workshops

Practical sessions in year two are divided into three blocks to take maximum advantage of the weather conditions and water temperatures. Consolidated effort like this also ensures maximum learning and retention of your newly acquired skills. It also frees up alternate Fridays for personal development in the outdoors and time to complete the video for assignment 2.

  1. Block 1: 3 full days of practical activity in September the week before Fresher's Week, this will include activities such as :
  2. Coasteering on the West Coast of Anglesey
  3. Wild swimming in the Menai Straits and
  4. Rolling and rescue practice either in the surf or at Four Mile Bridge on Anglesey

  5. Block 2: 3 full days of white water kayaking

  6. Block 3: 4 days of Training and Assessment in Paddlesport Leadership and Paddlesport Instruction.

These are recognised national governing body awards provided by British Canoeing Assessors. Participation in them is compulsory and as such all course fees (approx £320 per person) are covered by the University, however, if you require British Canoeing certification you will need to pay the following fees yourself: governing body membership (£45), registration for the instructor course (£45) registration for the leadership course (£39) and BC Assessor fees (£20 for instructor course and £120 for the leadership course). If you already hold these awards in one discipline you will have the opportunity to be assessed in a second discipline.


Transferable skills

  • Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
  • Computer Literacy - Proficiency in using a varied range of computer software
  • Self-Management - Able to work unsupervised in an efficient, punctual and structured manner. To examine the outcomes of tasks and events, and judge levels of quality and importance
  • Exploring - Able to investigate, research and consider alternatives
  • Information retrieval - Able to access different and multiple sources of information
  • Inter-personal - Able to question, actively listen, examine given answers and interact sensitevely with others
  • Safety-Consciousness - Having an awareness of your immediate environment, and confidence in adhering to health and safety regulations
  • Presentation - Able to clearly present information and explanations to an audience. Through the written or oral mode of communication accurately and concisely.
  • Teamwork - Able to constructively cooperate with others on a common task, and/or be part of a day-to-day working team
  • Mentoring - Able to support, help, guide, inspire and/or coach others
  • Caring - Showing concern for others; caring for children, people with disabilities and/or the elderly
  • Management - Able to utilise, coordinate and control resources (human, physical and/or financial)
  • Self-awareness & Reflectivity - Having an awareness of your own strengths, weaknesses, aims and objectives. Able to regularly review, evaluate and reflect upon the performance of yourself and others
  • Leadership - Able to lead and manage, develop action plans and objectives, offer guidance and direction to others, and cope with the related pressures such authority can result in

Subject specific skills

  • research and assess paradigms, theories, principles, concepts and factual information, and apply such skills in explaining and solving problems
  • describe, synthesise, interpret, analyse and evaluate information and data relevant to a professional or vocational context
  • demonstrate effective written and/or oral communication and presentation skills
  • work effectively independently and with others
  • take and demonstrate responsibility for their own learning and continuing personal and professional development
  • self-appraise and reflect on practice
  • plan and design practical activities using appropriate techniques and procedures whilst demonstrating high levels of relevant skills
  • project manage and execute practical activities using appropriate techniques and procedures whilst demonstrating high levels of relevant skills
  • recognise and respond to moral, ethical, sustainability and safety issues that directly pertain to the context of study including relevant legislation and professional codes of conduct
  • undertake fieldwork with continuous regard for safety and risk assessment.
  • develop transferable skills of relevance to careers outside of sport, health and exercise sciences.
  • communicate succinctly at a level appropriate to different audiences.
  • develop effective learning aids


Resource implications for students

It is highly recommended that students buy a pair of neoprene gloves and neoprene socks to go inside an old pair of trainers for use on the water. Although all National Governing Body (NGB) course fees are paid for by the University, if students wish to have the certificates, they will need to pay for these themselves. Some NGB courses also require registration fees/provider fees associated with some awards which must also be covered by the students. Details regarding these costs can be found in the course description and teaching methods tabs.

Talis Reading list

Reading list

Core Reading

  • Berry, M., Lomax, J., and Hodgson, C. (2015) Adventure Sports Coaching ISBN978-0-415-74602-1
  • Ferrero, F., (Ed) (2005) BCU Coaching Handbook (2005) ISBN: 0-9547061-6-1


  • Ferrero, F., (Ed) (2005) BCU Canoe & Kayak Handbook ISBN: 0-9531956-51
  • Ferrero, F., (2006) White Water Safety and Rescue 2nd Edition ISBN:0-9547061-5-3
  • Russ, D., & Collins, L. (2005) Canoe & Kayak Games ISBN:0-9550614-0-7
  • Butler, R. J., & Hardy, L. (1992).The performance profile: Theory and application. The Sport Psychologist, 6(3), 253-264.
  • Locke, E. A., & Latham, G. P. (1990). A theory of goal setting & task performance. Englewood Cliffs, NJ, US: Prentice-Hall, Inc.
  • Fitts, P. M., & Posner, M. I. (1967). Human performance. Belmont, CA: Brooks/Cole

Pre- and Co-requisite Modules

Pre-requisite of:

Courses including this module

Compulsory in courses: