From world class player to world class coach?

Last month, Malaysian squash legend Nicol David passed her World Squash Coaching (WSC) Level 2 exams, following the completion of the course in Kuala Lumpur in June.

We spoke to the eight-time world champion about the course and how it will help her continue her mission to make squash as accessible as possible in Malaysia, through the Nicol David Organisation (NDO) as well as Women in Coaching courses.

Nicol, congratulations on completing the course. Could you begin by telling us why you decided to do your WSC Level 2?

Thank you! I did it because it was my chance to take that next step in coaching not only to coach people that want to learn squash but also to be an instructor to get more squash coaches to be involved as we are in need of coaches and more so women coaches.

What did the course consist of?

The course gave an overview about how to approach coaching in all aspects. We started off with factors around skill learning, some recap on the Level 1 coaching course, motivation & goal setting, arousal & stress control, the energy system, strength & conditioning, fitness testing, PSA planning & participation, fitness components, principles of training, anticipation & deception, tactical development, periodisation for squash and performance analysis.

It may sound a lot! But all these components are important to equip coaches in more detail about what goes into preparation for a training time frame especially the technical, tactical, physiological and psychological aspects.

What did you like most about the course?

I like that it was very collaborative, we all worked as a team doing the exercises of each module taught by the instructor so everyone in the team was learning from each other while getting different perspectives too.

What was the most valuable thing you learned?

That coaching squash is a science and an art. There is not one way of coaching and the course encourages the coaches to be their own coach with the tools given to follow some structure and guidance.

Would you recommend the course?

Yes, I would!

It’s great because the only way to improve as a coach and even as a player is to keep on learning and growing in the sport.

More coaches should take their WSC Level 2 to have a better understanding about squash and to be more knowledgable as a coach to pursue their career in coaching future players and teams.

What are your priorities as a coach?

The priority is to put the players and/or team first and getting a good support team that will have a positive approach to training at every level.  Keeping the best environment to train is key to develop all round.

What are your future coaching plans now that you’ve completed the course?

I’m currently the head coach of my foundation and my future is to coach more coaches to become leaders in their own space.

Since completing the course, Nicol has been able to put the lessons learnt in Kuala Lumpur into her own coaching career, both with the Nicol David Organisation and in collaboration with the Squash Racquets Association of Malaysia (SRAM).

On 29 August, David, with support from the WSF, SRAM, PSA Foundation and the NDO will host a Women In Coaching Level 1 course in Kuala Lumpur, with the aim of helping the next generation of female coaches begin their journey.

Find out more about the Nicol David Organisation

Find out more about World Squash Coaching