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That’s the only word I can use to describe the experience I had last week of consulting for UK Coaching.

In case you missed it, I was invited to consult on a Health Policy for UK Coaching with the aim of improving confidence for coaches dealing with people with long-term health conditions.

I was blown away by how thoughtful and caring they were – I guess I must have been expecting a bunch of stuffy shirts using lots of technical language – and it wasn’t like that at all!

What they displayed was simply the foundations of great coaching (which is pretty impressive for a huge organisation)…


1. Listening

Despite being one of around 80 consultants on that video conference, we were all brought up to speed with how the policy has been moving forward over the last 18 months and the research they been doing to shape it before breaking out into small groups to share our opinions.

There were people from a wide range of backgrounds in my group, despite there being 6 of us and we all had a chance to have our say.

The group leader then voiced our thoughts to the main group when we came back together as a whole group.

What really impressed me though, was that they were truly listening – not just waiting for the words that they wanted to hear, or framing the questions for us to confirm what they already knew.


2. Empathy

The group really considered what it’s like in the real-world for all parties to be getting involved in exercise with long-term health conditions.

They put themselves in the participants’ shoes, the newbie coach, the experienced coach who has never worked with that specific condition before and there was even a brief mention of the medical profession too.

What stood out to me most here was that they are still having the same struggle I was experiencing over 15 years ago, when I tried to create a collaboration between therapists and myself as a Personal Trainer… there’s still a huge reluctance on the part of the healthcare system to include the exercise professionals.


3. Language

Interestingly, having spend 90 minutes listening to very accomplished people talking, I actually felt like I was in the company of other human beings!

There was no technical jargon, no corporate speak that nobody understood, it was just a plain English conversation between people who actually care about this subject.

I even got the feeling that (for this project at least), there’s a big swing away from scientific, data based research in order to capture the essence of what actually happens in coaching sessions.

This was music to my ears!

Of course, scientific data has its place, but the vast majority of coaches in the UK never actually get to learn it, either because the education pathway in their sport doesn’t cover it, or they are hobbyist, part-time, or volunteer coaches who don’t want to make a career out of coaching.

But that doesn’t mean that these coaches don’t experience people with long-term health conditions (including injuries)


4. Questioning

Despite having a pretty comprehensive idea of how to help coaches, now that they are 18 months into the research, it impressed me that they are still asking questions about how to improve what they have, how to make it more accessible for people, and what is already out there in the marketplace so that they can avoid duplicating.

They are even looking at potential partnerships with the private sector (like the SMARTT® Methods), which is pretty exciting!


5. Action

Just like any great coach, UK Coaching are reserving action until they are confident that what they do will make a difference.


I’m super impressed with them and it’s given me a lot of confidence that the future of coaching in the UK is in great hands!

Oh, and everything they found from talking to both individuals and coaches over the last 18 months, is EXACTLY what I built the SMARTT® Methods on and why I created them in the first place!

So, it’s my goal to become partnered with them by the end of 2022.

What can you take away from this?


1. Trust – in me, the SMARTT® Methods, and everything we stand for

2. Confidence – that the industry is 100% behind you in your exploration of injury prevention

3. Growth – right now it might feel cool that you’ve discovered a hidden gem in the industry that not many people know about, but that’s not gonna last for long!


So, if you want bragging rights among your coaching friends that you knew about the SMARTT® Methods before they went mainstream, you better be quick in telling your friends!

A great place to start would be inviting them to listen to the podcast – you can find the page at

And of course, if you want to feel more confident in coaching people with existing injury problems, then I’d recommend the Amazon best-selling book “Unlocking Fitness”. You can grab your copy at

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