Coaching Association of Canada

5 ways for a coach to maintain integrity in sport

 Core coaching values have been formalized and expressed as a series of principles in the NCCP Code of Ethics. These principles can be thought of as a set of behavioural expectations regarding participating in sport, coaching athletes or teams, and administering sports.

These values are expressed as 5 core ethical principles.

  1. Physical safety and health of athletes
  2. Coaching responsibly
  3. Integrity in relations with others
  4. Respect of athletes
  5. Honouring sport

The following chart provides a description of each principle and outlines some implications for coaches.



Standards of Behaviour Expected of Coaches

Physical safety and health of athletes

- Ensure that training or competition site is safe at all times.

- Be prepared to act quickly and appropriately in case of emergency.

- Avoid placing athletes in situations presenting unnecessary risk or that are beyond their level.

- Strive or preserve the present and future health and well-being of athletes.

Coaching responsibly

- Make wise use of the authority of the position and make decisions in the interest of athletes.

- Foster self-esteem among athletes.

- Avoid deriving personal advantage for a situation or decision.

- Know one's limitations in terms of knowledge and skills when making decisions, giving instructions or taking action.

- Honour commitments, word given, and agreed objectives.

- Maintain confidentiality and privacy of personal information and use it appropriately.

Integrity in relations with others

- Avoid situations that may affect objectivity or impartiality of coaching duties.

- Abstain from all behaviours considered to be harassment or inappropriate relations with an athlete.

- Always ensure decisions are taken equitably.


- Ensure that everyone is treated equally, regardless of athletic potential, race, sex, language, religion, or age.

- Preserve the dignity of each person in interacting with others.

- Respect the principles, rules, and policies in force.

Honouring sport

- Strictly observe and ensure observance of all regulations.

- Aim to compete fairly.

- Maintain dignity in all circumstances and exercise self-control.

- Respect officials and accept their decisions without questionning their integrity.


Enroll in the Leading Drug-free Sport. The National Coaching Certification Program (NCCP) multi-sport modules series are available through your Provincial or Territorial Coaching Representative.