Atlantis Coach Manual




Welcome to Atlantis. Whether you are new to the club, or an Atlantis swimmer joining as a first-time coach, we are happy and excited you’re part of the team.


This handbook should answer many of the questions you have as a new-to-Atlantis coach, and ones that will inevitably pop up over the season. Please refer to it as needed; you can always reach out to the Head Coach for further clarification or additional information. Information about specific job requirements is found in your coach contract.


Mission Statement


It is our goal to provide an accepting and nurturing yet disciplined environment in which athletes can acquire the technical, physical, social and mental skills required for the execution of synchro-related skills. We equally promote fair play; abiding by the Sport Nova Scotia guidelines. These tactics consist of: team spirit, co-operation, participation, self-expression, self-confidence, creativity and independence.


General expectations


As a coach, you will:

  • Be familiar with the Atlantis mission statement and apply this philosophy to your coaching.
  • Serve as a positive role model for athletes and fellow coaches.
  • Follow the principles of Respect In Sport.
  • Always strive to coach the HOW.
  • Follow the Rule of 2 at all times.
  • Keep in consistent contact with the Head Coach about all aspects of your coaching, positive and challenging; treat your coaching practice as a team effort among co-coaches.
  • Maintain appropriate coach education and professional development (this includes the mandatory Respect In Sport online course and the mandatory Making Headway Concussion Series, plus the optional-but-highly-encouraged Keeping Girls in Sport online module.
  • Obtain clear Police Record Check through Sterling Backcheck if you do not already have one that is less than 5 years old 
  • Treat safety as the number one priority for athletes — physically, mentally and emotionally

Specific expectations


As a coach, you will:

  • Use cellphones/tablets on deck only as coaching aids or in case of an emergency.
  • Engage with and observe swimmers at all times while coaching, providing support and corrections.
  • Refrain from posting photos on social media accounts of athletes who have not signed the Atlantis photo release — the Head Coach can let you know to which athletes this applies.
  • Arrive on deck or at the arranged athlete meet-up location 10 minutes prior to practice start.
  • Follow protocol for athlete release as per Atlantis Policies and Guidelines.
  • Be aware of your athletes’ medical concerns and injuries and their rehabilitation needs and progress.
  • Attend all mandatory coach meetings and all club training sessions.
  • Assume responsibility for your athletes at all practices and competitions, including their behaviour and attire.
  • Assume responsibility for club equipment that you use, ensuring it is well cared-for and stored properly.
  • Fill-out and submit (to Head Coach or Assistant Head Coach) an Incident/Injury Report Form in the case of any occurrence and contact parents/guardians of involved swimmers.
  • Be informed by the Head Coach of practice cancellations due to inclement weather or any other reason.
  • Refrain from accepting any payment from athletes or parents/guardians — all payments are handled through the Atlantis treasurer.
  • Respect the privacy of swimmer contact information, and particularly medical and personal information, which should be kept on a need-to-know basis among colleagues.
  • Ensure that you are not coaching multiple teams that compete at the same age level from competing clubs.
  • Ensure that there is always an on-deck supervisory coach at competitions for athletes in the 11-12 and younger age categories when you are engaged in coaching multiple teams.
  • Understand that pay for multi-club coaching pay at competitions is based on percentage time spent with each club, as agreed jointly by club chairs. This includes both on-deck and off-deck hours as well as reimbursement for meals and travel.
  • Understand the importance of attending competitions with your athletes, and that these fall outside your regular coaching hours and can involve travel. Competition dates are typically determined at the start of the season; competition registration and non-refundable travel booking is completed soon after.

 Please familiarize yourself with the Atlantis Covid-19 PoliciesAtlantis Policies and Guidelines and the Atlantis Travel Guidelines. In them, you will find answers to many parent and athlete questions, as well as more detailed guidelines for coaching at meets, athlete attendance, dismissal and conduct.


Certification requirements

  • Aqua Go! — Aqua Go! certified 
  • Provincial stream — Comp Intro 
  • National Stream — Comp Dev 
  • Masters — a minimum of Comp Intro 


Lines of communication


  • Coaches are expected to facilitate positive relationships among swimmers, and help negotiate any conflict brought to your attention.
  • Coaches will act as the first line of contact for and to their team parents/guardians, informing them of all team information and individual athlete information. In the case of conflict that is not easily resolvable, you are asked to elevate the issue to the Head Coach.
  • In the case of having a conflict with the Head Coach, you may communicate directly with the board president, or any other member of the board executive with whom you prefer to have the matter addressed.




Your pay rate is based on your certification level, and in some cases experience. It is set at the beginning of the season for the entire season and detailed in your coach contract. In the case of a mid-season certification upgrade, please inform the Head Coach in advance of your intent to do so and once the certification upgrade takes effect. Your pay increase will take effect the following month.


Atlantis covers Canada Artistic Swimming coach registration costs. In the case of coaches who train athletes at two clubs, Atlantis will pay 50 per cent of the registration cost. Coaches must inform the Head Coach of multi-club coaching contracts at the start of the season.


Pay and expense reimbursement for local and away competitions, and for multi-club coaches at competitions, is outlined in the Atlantis Travel Guidelines. Please familiarize yourself with the rules — your understanding is essential to being appropriately paid and reimbursed.