U18 Athletic Development Coach

  • Wolverhampton Wanderers FC
  • Wolverhampton, UK
  • 10 May, 2024
Full time Academy

Job Description

We are Wolves. Progressive, determined, bright, unified and humble. A pack that is hungry for success. Wolves is one of the fastest growing professional football clubs in the UK, and also boasts one of the richest histories in the beautiful game.

Formed in 1877, Wolves was a founder member of the Football League, and was one of the country’s most successful sides in the fifties and sixties. During a two decade spell the Black Country’s most decorated side won three First Division titles and one of its four FA Cups.

Fast forward 70 years and Wolves are back amongst football’s elite. In the past six years we have celebrated promotion to the Premier League, back-to-back 7th placed finishes and a Europa League quarter-final campaign. Now, we will be competing in the Premier League for a sixth successive season.

But at Wolves it is all about what we will do, not what we have done. We don’t simply look to the future, we seize it.


We take seriously our commitment to the safeguarding of children and adults at risk and to ensuring that Wolves is free from discrimination and harassment.

Job purpose

We are seeking an exceptional individual to take on the Athletic Development Coach role for our U18’s team within our Academy. The focusing is primarily on the planning, implementing and monitoring on-field Athletic Development and gym-based Strength + Power sessions so as to ensure that our Academy players reach their physical potential.

This role involves oversight of the physical development and injury prevention of players within the U18s’s squad. Responsibilities will include working closely with the U18s’s Sport Scientist alongside the Academy Medicine team to ensure players are provided with warm-ups/activation, speed/agility development, strength/power development, injury prevention, conditioning and recovery sessions appropriate for their individual needs.

The successful candidate will also contribute to rehabilitation with injured players. This role will contribute to the success and achievement of the academy programme and synthesise the transition from academy to first team. A key component of this role is the ability to strive for excellence to ensure that the optimal service is provided for all academy PDP players. 

Key responsibilities

  • Lead the planning and delivery of field based athletic development for the U18 players. To include but not limited to: Speed, Strength, Power, Change of Direction and Conditioning qualities.
  • Design and implement gym-based programming for both the team setting and individual players; including identification of performance limiting strength and power deficits.
  • Responsible for ensuring appropriate and bespoke physical performance coaching to all Players within the U21’s/U18’s squad, utilising fitness test data.
  • Assist and lead with the implementation of injury prevention, rehabilitation and recovery strategies as required
  • Lease with the Sport Scientist to oversee appropriate load management of all players.
  • Create strong links with the Lead 9-16s Physical Performance Coach to ensure a club wise approach to athletic development are being implemented through the club.
  • Clear and effective communication regarding all U18’s players with relevant wider MDT staff members. These include technical coaches, PPCs, nutritionists, psychologists and physiotherapists.
  • Meet regularly with Senior Performance and Medicine team members, keeping these members fully briefed on players status and plans.
  • Create and deliver regular reports on Academy U18’s players
  • Contribute to reviewing and updating the Academy Performance Plan to maintain EPPP category one status.
  • The planning and provision of warm-ups/activation, speed/agility, strength/power development, injury prevention, conditioning and recovery sessions.
  • Ensure all administrative tasks are completed and appropriately managed, ensuring all notes are entered on to the PMA system and respective admin software platforms within 24 hours of completion.
  • Support and mentor other physical performance coaches within the academy as directed by Head of Physical Performance.
  • Lead and assist in rehabilitation of injured players as required.

 Continual Professional Development

  • Take responsibility for your own continued professional development, ensuring that you attend regular courses/conferences and keeping an up-to-date portfolio of achievements.
  • Strive to advance working practices both within the Medical Department, and in the wider sports physiotherapy setting by promoting and performing clinical research where possible.

General responsibilities

  • Compliance with Club policies
  • Compliance with the Club’s health and safety procedures
  • Compliance with the Club’s safeguarding policies
  • To promote the Club’s values
  • To work consistently to embed equality & diversity into the Club
  • To undertake such other duties as may be reasonably expected
  • To maintain professional conduct at all times


  • This role involves working with children and/or adults at risk in a Regulated Activity (or in close proximity to children and/or adults at risk). This means that the post-holder is required to apply all relevant policies and uphold the Club’s commitment to safeguarding vulnerable people

Key relationships

  • Academy Director
  • Head of High Performance
  • Head of Physical Performance
  • Head of Academy Sport Science and Medicine

Scope of job

  • Flexibility in this role is essential – ability to work irregular and unsocial hours as required.
  • Work may be subject to change with less than 24 hours’ notice on occasions.
  • Work will regularly be outside ‘normal’ working hours, in evenings, weekends and bank holidays.
  • Attendance at consultant appointments/special events/dinners/tournaments.
  • All annual leave is to be taken during breaks in the footballing season
Person Specification
Knowledge: the level and breadth of knowledge to do the job e.g. understanding of a defined system, method or procedure, legal or regulatory frameworks etc


  • A basic understanding of the Governing body (the Premier league & FA) their doping policy, and basic pathological requirements and how this relates to nutrition support modification
  • EPPP requirements
  • Operate within the rules of professional confidentiality to liaise with athletes, medical staff, sports sciences staff, coaches and other support staff as appropriate
  • An understanding of individual responsibility in complying with Health and Safety policies
Technical/work-based skills: skills specific to the job e.g. language competence, typing skills, coaching skills etc


  • Proven experience of developing speed, strength, power, change of direction and conditioning qualities to this chosen demographic.
  • Experience of how to modify and develop conditioning programmes according to test results or specific individual needs
  • Evidence of a proven track record in designing multi-facet periodised training programmes specific to elite football.
  • Ability to modify coaching style when delivering practical sessions to different populations
  • Experience delivering warm-up, cool-down, flexibility, core strength and stability, speed, agility, quickness training


  • Working knowledge and prescription of Isoinertial training
  • Understanding and creating Excel pivot tables
General skills and attributes: more general characteristics e.g. flexibility, communication skills, team working etc


  • Experience of actively engaging with players and technical coaches to create a culture which enhances attitudes towards Strength and Conditioning practices
  • Excellent anatomical knowledge and an ability to apply this specifically when communicating with coaches and physiotherapists
  • Ability to communicate complex data in terms that are easily understood by a wide range of audiences
  • Ability to work irregular and unsociable hours as required involving work outside normal office hours, evenings, weekends and Bank Holidays

Experience: proven record of experience in a particular field, profession or specialism.


  • A minimum of 5 years’ experience of working in an Elite environment supporting athletes in a Strength and Conditioning Capacity


  • Having worked within an Academy football MDT environment 

Qualifications: the level of educational, professional and/or occupational training required


  • An undergraduate degree in a sport science related field (2:1 minimum)
  • Master’s degree in a sports science related field
  • UKSCA Accreditation or NSCA?
  • ISAK level 1
  • BASES Accreditation


  • EFAIF medical certificate
  • NSCA Accreditation
  • Attended and completed BASES CPD workshops and documentation to become a Supervisor and Reviewer for future BASES applicants