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UKA Coach Building A Better Coaching Environment

UKA Futures Programme

  Future Programme

Key Sections:


Programme Benefits

Selection Process

Consideration Criteria






“Futures” is a UKA support programme for athletes and their coaches which underpins the World Class Performance Programme (WCPP).  The 2012-13 programme runs from 1 December 2012 to 30 November 2013 and will continue UKA’s drive towards more targeted support for athletes and their coaches. Unlike the WCPP it is supported purely by UKA and not Lottery funding.

The Futures programme targets athletes with the potential to be selected to the WCPP within two years – typically aged under 20, but with flexibility to support older athletes deemed an exceptional case for support.  Athletes and their coaches’ individual development plans will be supported based on their agreed annual plan, allowing for flexibility and individual discretion around distribution of resources.

For the 2012-13 programme, athlete-coach pairs will be considered and, if selected by the selection panel [1], invited to join the programme in December 2012.  Athletes retained or invited onto the programme will be asked to submit, with their coaches, an annual plan, including competition and training plans and a proposed budget.  These must be received before the programme start date (1 December 2012) failure to do so could result in the athlete being removed from the programme or their invitation withdrawn.

Places on Futures are limited and therefore the programme works in line with SportsAid to nominate further athletes for priority, national and ‘extra’ support to assist with their development plans (see below).

Programme Benefits


  • Financial assistance (up to £750 [2]) towards support for their individual development plan and supporting the athlete(s) in training and competition
  • Mentoring and support as appropriate  - linked into the UKA Staff Coaches and the National Coach Development Programme (in England) if applicable


  • Financial assistance (up to £1500) towards training and competition costs
  • BOA Olympic Passport
  • Medical Insurance 
  • Access to doctor and soft tissue therapy (eg physiotherapy) through UKA, partner organisations or other approved providers
  • Other service access by agreement, through UKA. partner organisations or approved providers (via athlete’s budget)

Note:  Athletes selected for Futures who attend University may be additionally nominated to receive some of the above support services via the Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme (TASS).  Therefore athletes who achieve a performance in 2012 which exceeds the Futures Consideration guidelines and have confirmed their place (or are already studying) at University, should contact the UKA Development Manager (  NB: Not all Universities may be part of the UKA TASS scheme and places for TASS support are limited.

Selection Process

The 2012-13 Futures programme is limited to approximately 30 Athlete-Coach pairs – therefore there will be athletes who achieve the consideration standards who will not be invited onto the programme.  The purpose of the UKA Selection Panel [1] is to prioritise athletes who have the best chance to meet the aims of the World Class Performance Programme (WCPP).  The Panel will make their selection at the end of October 2012, following the WCPP selection process. The Panel will consider athletes in the following categories:

1.       Athletes currently on the Futures programme, depending on their 2012 season performances and individual circumstances. 

2.      Athletes not currently on the Futures programme who hit the consideration standard within 2012

3.      Athletes not currently on the Futures programme but considered a ‘wildcard’ by the relevant UKA National Event Coach

For developing athletes in the tier just below WCPP, analysis of performance alone is not an adequate predictor of future success.  Therefore the selection process will strongly consider factors which make reaching the WCPP within two years a realistic prospect e.g. athletes with rising profiles, positive championship results and positive training environments.  Any special circumstances around these or other factors may also be considered when making selections.

Only athletes eligible to compete for TeamGB at the Olympic Games can be included on the Futures programme.

Athletes with existing injuries or illness would not normally be added to the programme; athletes with a history of past serious injuries or illnesses will be considered on a case-by-case basis.  All athletes invited onto the 2012-13 programme will be required to complete a medical form and, if deemed necessary by UKA’s Chief Medical Officer, undergo further examination to assess their medical status.  Any falsification on the medical forms may lead to removal from the programme.

Consideration Criteria

To be considered, athletes must achieve at least the standards outlined in the table below in 2012 (the age group refers to their age during the 2012 season) to be considered for the Futures programme. 

Consideration Criteria

Consideration Criteria Notes:

Standards are based on analysis of historical top-8 performances at World Age-Group Championships and UKA Age-Group Selection Standards. 

All athletes currently on Futures will have their position on the programme reviewed, based on their 2012 season performances, individual circumstances, input from UKA Development Manager and National Event Coach (or UKA nominated individual to act in this respect).
An additional group of athletes considered to have high potential for future World and Olympic success will be identified by the National Event Coaches (or nominated individuals to act in this respect) and presented for consideration of the panel.
PLEASE NOTE that approximately 30 athlete-coach pairs will be selected for the Futures programme – therefore meeting the performance criteria to be considered by the panel WILL NOT automatically result in acceptance onto the programme.  The panel will take into consideration athlete performance, consistency, ranking, championship ability/record etc, coach’s previous history and experience of developing talented athletes, training environment and any other contributing factors that they consider relevant.



UKA will recommend a number of the unsuccessful Futures candidates to SportsAid for a Priority Award.  However, in order to be considered for SportsAid awards, athletes must complete a SportsAid online application form.  Details of how to apply will be available on the Home Countries athletics websites.

Coaches of these athletes will still be considered for priority nomination for development opportunities and should contact the relevant National Event Coach or Jo Jennings, UKA Development Manager, for further information if required -


Grounds for appeal are limited to cases where it is felt that a decision has been reached on the basis of an error of fact or the selection process was not followed.  Only individuals excluded from the programme are entitled to appeal regarding their own individual case.  All such appeals should be made within 10 working days of the announcement of the Futures Programme on the UKA website (early November 2012) to UKA’s Development Manager, Jo Jennings -   UKA’s Head of Coaching and Development, Development Manager and the relevant National Event Coach (or nominated individual) will consider the query and if necessary, refer the decision back to the Selection Panel for re-consideration.  The athlete will be notified of the decision in writing along with reasons for the decision.


[1] UKA Panel will consist of:

Voting members




· Strategic Head of Coaching and Development

·One representative of each event and/or event group as nominated by the Head Coach (normally the National Event Coaches)

Non-voting members





· Development Manager (Chair)

· Statistician

· Head of Performance Operations

· Medical representative(s)

· Note taker to keep meeting records

[2] Maximum award for any coach will be £1500, regardless of number of athletes coached who are selected. UKA employed coaches will not qualify for a coach award.


Athletes retained or invited onto the programme for 2012-13 will be asked to submit, with their coaches, an annual plan, including competition and training plans and a proposed budget which must be received before the programme start date of December 1 2012.

The following resources can help coaches with annual planning.

Introduction to planning

Planning in 7 easy steps

2012 Blank Annual Planning Document

To apply these principles to different event groups it helps to be able to categorise exercises. The UKA Exercise Classification Hierarchy helps to do this:

UKA Exercise Classification Podcast

Here is an example of how this could happen for the sprints but the same principles can be applied to other event groups:

Derek Evely: Annual Planning for Sprints

Since athletes entering onto the Futures Programme are still developing, coaches may find it useful to refer to the UKA Athlete Development Model to ensure they cover all the aspects appropriate their current stage of development:

UKA Athlete Development Model

UKA Athlete Development Model Podcast



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