The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of coaching and coaching education in Portugal. In Portugal, sport coaching is traditionally considered a part-time vocation. There has been a growing concern of the Portuguese authorities to increase the standards of quality for sport coaching. Following the 1974 revolution there were profound alterations in how coaching and coach education are regulated. The legislative changes in coach education occurred mainly due to the harmonisation of the qualifications in the European Union. More recently, the responsibility for coach certification has moved from the different sports federations to a national sports organization that has created four grades of coach education. Coach education in all grades requires a general and a specific curricular component as well as an internship supervised by an accredited mentor. The academic formation is now well regulated. However, some sport federations are resistant to this academic certification process because they fear losing their exclusive control of their coach certification.
Rui Resende is a professor at the Maia University Institute. He was an athlete and volleyball coach at all competitive levels, counting, among others, the direction of the national team in a European Junior Championship. He was president of the National Association of Volleyball Coaches in Portugal. Currently he is vice president of the Scientific Society of Sport Pedagogy and chief editor of the Journal of Sport Pedagogy and Research.
Pedro Sequeira is professor coordinator at the Sport Sciences School of Rio Maior - Polythecnic Institute of Santarém. There he is director of the Research Unit and director of the Life Quality Research Centre. He is responsible for the education programs of the Portuguese Handball Federation and member of the Methods Commission of the European Handball Federation. For the last two years he has been president of the Coaching Confederation.
Hugo Sarmento is a professor in the Polytechnic Institute of Maia, Portugal. A posdoctoral researcher in the Spert Lab – University of Lisbon, He is the current editor-in-chief of the Scientific journal of the FPDD – Sport and Physical Activity for All.