How to Become a Basketball Coach: the Complete Guide

If you are an aspiring basketball coach or simply a basketball enthusiast who is curious about the game’s coaching aspect, then you’ve stumbled upon the right page ?. 

Did you know that a basketball coach earns an average of 56,641$ per year? As a basketball coach, you can earn up to 30$/hour! Exciting, ain’t it?! ?

Let’s not miss out on the other perks- like health insurance, paid housing, life insurance, and a lot more! 

Allow me to take you into the world of basketball coaching, which is not explored as much as the glamorous game of basketball and the even more glamorous lives of its players. ⤵️

Who is a Basketball Coach?

An instructor, guide, and mentor- that’s what a basketball coach is ?! 

So, you know that a basketball coach is a professional instructor who guides players to improve their skills and enhance coordination with the team, mostly to win ? or at least perform well in a match. 

Basketball coaches may work with players of different age groups and skill sets. They not only train players in technical skills and tactics but also educate them in understanding the game and building strategies accordingly ?. 

Coaches also monitor team coordination and performance and analyze these factors to identify any room for improvement. 

Formally, a basketball coach is expected to have a bachelor’s degree in any related field, like physical education, along with a recognized certification ?.

How much can a Basketball Coach earn?

Wondering how much you can make as a basketball coach ?? Well, the amount of money you earn as a basketball coach will depend on the level of coaching you engage in. 

On average, a basketball coach earns $56,641 annually. The salary depends on a multitude of factors, including the courses you have been enrolled in, the certifications you hold, the years of experience you have, and more. Based on this, you can earn between $45,555 and $76,860.

Read on to learn more about how you can become a basketball coach. 

How to Become a Basketball Coach (Tips)

Now that you are familiar with the responsibilities that come with the position of a basketball coach let us look at the steps you have to take to become one.⤵️

Appropriate Certifications to Become A Basketball Coach

Coaches are required to receive certification under the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) at the youth, high school, and college levels. It includes training in CPR, first-aid, drug testing, and background checks to prioritize safety. An additional teaching certificate may also be a necessity at some high schools?.

Education Requirements are a Must

While some coaching rules may accept a high school diploma or GED, the majority of basketball coaching jobs demand a bachelor’s degree in a related field, such as physical education, sports management, sports medicine, etc. 

Many high school and college coaching positions also involve teaching, so having a degree ? or minor in education is quite helpful. 

Years of Experience Make a Difference

Coaching experience may not be a requirement for recreational leagues. However, if you wish to apply for the post of basketball coach at the high school, college, or NBA level, then you must get some intense work done ?.

In the case of college teams and professional teams, candidates holding a good amount of coaching experience are prioritized. This is because experience seems to correspond with effective leadership skills, a deeper understanding, and a better grasp of competitive complexities. 

Responsibilities of a Basketball Coach

What do you think is the fundamental step towards success in general? ? I think it is to have a clear vision ? and strategy ?. Would you agree?

Set vision and strategy

For a basketball team, it is the coach who is responsible for establishing a vision and strategy.

The coach should have the ability to look at the big picture so that the team’s efforts can be aligned toward the direction of its goals ?. 

A coach is also expected to be aware of the team’s needs, strengths, and weaknesses. Only after focusing on these aspects as a whole can a coach expect to guide the team toward achieving their objectives on the court.

Shape the environment

Well, having set up the vision and strategy, now is the time for the coach to create an action plan and organize the requisite setting and personnel ?. You must already be aware that it is the responsibility of the coach to recruit athletes, staff, and resources necessary for enhancing team performance. 

The safety and well-being of all the participants are also a matter of prime importance for the coach. Finally, the coach carefully crafts progress markers to measure success and ensure continuous improvement within the team ?. 

Build relationships

You must have observed in movies ? that a coach sometimes has to help team members get over their differences and coordinate for the team’s sake.

A basketball coach must lead and influence the team, managing relationships to create a positive and cohesive environment. Moreover, as a coach, you should try to be a good listener ?, attentively understanding and addressing the needs of individual team members. A coach, thus, plays a crucial role in building trust and collaboration within the team.

Conduct practices and structure Basketball competitions 

You do remember the classic saying that ‘practice makes a man perfect,’ right? That applies to basketball as well.?

Regular practice and competitions are important for players to become better as individual players and as a well-coordinated team ?. As a basketball coach, it becomes your responsibility to organize productive practice sessions and manage suitable competitions for the team. 

Read and React to the field.

Let us now talk about your on-field duty as a coach. Just like in the movies, a coach has to access the dynamics of a game in real-time ?. Based on such assessments, you must convey proper instructions to the team ?‍?. 

Sometimes, it might become necessary to adjust or completely alter the strategy mid-game. You must be well-prepared for any unpredictable situation.

Learn and Reflect

It is always beneficial to look back upon the effectiveness of practice sessions, game strategy, coaching methods, etc. Such evaluations become important in identifying any areas of improvement and in making necessary adjustments accordingly ?. 

Therefore, a good coach analyzes the performance of not only the team and individual players but themselves. 

Tips to Improve Your Basketball Coaching Career

Once you get a job as a basketball coach, do not forget that there is always room for improvement. When you upskill yourself as a coach, it reflects in your team’s performance too. So, here are some tips to give your basketball coaching career a boost ?.

Decide the level you want to coach

Coaching grade school teams and youth leagues can be a fulfilling path for individuals who enjoy working with children ?. However, if your goal is to work with more experienced players or coach higher-level games, then pursuing coaching opportunities in college and professional basketball may suit you better. 

Having clarity about your preferred level of coaching will help you align your career aspirations with the appropriate level of competition and player development.

Gain experience 

The more experienced you are as a basketball coach, the better opportunities will open up for you. 

Volunteering with basketball programs ? at youth or community levels is a great idea to add some experience to your resume. You can even look for part-time volunteering opportunities as a secondary coach in any local high school basketball team.

Such opportunities will help you develop your communication and leadership skills. Besides, you will be able to contribute to the development of young talents in the community ?.

Climb the ladder

You must always strive for improvement. Keep learning ? through various courses, training programs, workshops, events, etc. At the level you start your basketball coaching career with, focus on improving results. Improved results will not only bring victories to your team but will also keep adding star badges on your shoulder. 

An impressive record will put you in an advantageous position and help you advance in your coaching career. Who knows, you might even become a Head Coach someday ?!

Top Basketball Coaching Courses in the United States

If you are enthusiastic about becoming a basketball coach, then you should consider taking a certification course. Certification will not just strengthen your candidature for job openings but will also help you enhance your skills and abilities through training and education. ✅️

USA Basketball Coach License 

The USA Basketball Coach License program offers three levels of certification – gold ?, silver ?, and bronze ?, for coaches at all levels. 

You will be exposed to various aspects of coaching like player development, coaching ethics, offensive and defensive tactics, etc.

National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Certification

The NABC Certification includes a 10-15 hours online course covering coaching areas like strategy, tactics, player development, and team management. 

After completing the online coursework ?‍?, candidates are expected to pass an online exam with an 80% score or higher. Once both these steps are clear, you can finally receive your official certificate via mail. 

National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Level 1 and 2 Certifications

The NCAA offers Level 1 and Level 2 Coaching Certifications. The Level 1 Certification is structured for either new coaches or coaches transitioning from high school to club level. 

On the other hand, the Level 2 Certification is meant for coaches who have already secured a Level 1 Certification and have been working at an NCAA institution for a minimum of three years.☑️ 

Double-Goal Coach Certification by Positive Coaching Alliance 

The PCA offers the Double-Goal Coach Certification program, which consists of an online course and a live workshop. 

The 3-hour online course ?‍? covers areas like building a positive team culture, handling adversity, enhancing relationships of team members, etc. It follows a 2-hour live workshop, after attending which you can receive your certification.

Top Basketball Coaching Schools in the World

The United States Sports Academy, USA

The USSA offers training in basketball coaching. Their course is focused on covering all the well-known and lesser-known aspects of coaching. It also emphasizes an in-depth discussion of the fundamentals of basketball and how as a coach, you will help your team members develop these skills.

National Institute of Sports and Physical Education, INSEP, France

If you are a basketball lover, then let me ask you if you have heard about the INSEP.

The INSEP is renowned worldwide for its training programs shaping elite athletes. The French training institute also offers training and educational programs to coaches.

University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, USA

The basketball program of the University of North Carolina is well-recognized globally. The University’s coaching school offers workshops and courses designed specifically for basketball coaches.

University of Louisville, USA

The University of Louisville has quite an emphasis on its basketball coaching program. The program allows Aspiring basketball coaches access to courses and resources. 

FIBA Coaching Library

If you are a basketball coach at any level or still an aspiring basketball coach, the FIBA Coaching Library is your heaven.

The International Basketball Federation has crafted this gift for you, where you can access resources, courses, and materials on basketball coaching online.

Where to find Basketball Coaching opportunities online?

Finding job opportunities has become quite easy these days ?. There is a plethora of options, from official websites and social media to dedicated platforms for job listings like Indeed and LinkedIn. Let us look at some of the ways that you can find Basketball coaching opportunities online.⤵️

Coaching Job Boards

Several websites constantly post about job opportunities in sports coaching. In the case of basketball coaching, you can regularly visit the National High School Basketball Coaches Association (NHSBCA) Job Board, the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Job Market, etc.

Moreover, you can utilize platforms like or to find opportunities suitable to you✅️.

Sports Organization Websites

A good way to find basketball coaching opportunities is to stay updated about any opening on the websites of various basketball associations, leagues, and organizations. You can find listings to various levels like youth, high school, college, etc.

Online Coaching Networks

Joining online coaching communities will not only help you in staying updated on new job opportunities but also in connecting with experienced coaches and mentors. It’s always good to have your name known to others in your professional community. 

Social Media

Why don’t you consider starting a YouTube channel of your own where you can share your knowledge and training tips ??

Besides YouTube, you can utilize other social media platforms like LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, etc. Follow pages related to basketball coaching; follow basketball-related accounts, including those of fellow coaches.


You should stay notified about basketball coaching workshops, seminars, webinars, and clinics. Such events will help you build a solid social network with other coaches, Athletic directors, and basketball professionals. 

Key takeaways

Basketball coaching is a job of immense responsibility?. You hold the power to shape the careers of some bright talents in this field ?. The job is not restricted to shaping individuals but expands to include an entire team of phenomenal athletes ?. What a beauty!?

The guide above will surely help fulfill all the prerequisites to becoming a great basketball coach. All the best for becoming a great one! 

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