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USA Triathlon’s Level I coaching certification is the first step for aspiring triathlon coaches to take. This certification will jump start their career in training athletes for the multisport program USA Triathlon has to offer. The Level I clinic is designed to educate aspiring coaches on how to train their athletes on different aspects of triathlon. Coaches will learn how to design a training plan geared toward their athlete’s needs as well as learn strength specific training for triathletes and key workouts. In addition to learning how to cater to your athletes needs, coaches will also learn the mechanics and skills of swimming, cycling and running from some of USA Triathlon’s most esteemed coaches. Coaches will not just learn how to train their athletes physically but they will also learn about nutrition periodization and mental skills, two vital aspects to master in the sport of triathlon. Once a coach receives their Level I certification, they will have the opportunity to further their education within the USA Triathlon coaching family through such certifications like Youth and Junior, Level II and even Level III. 

How to Become a Level I Coach

For certification, candidate must complete and/or submit the following: 

Level I Clinic
The educational clinic requirement must be met by attending a USA Triathlon coaching certification clinic. Do not make travel arrangements based off the below times or before you are registered for a clinic as each clinic schedule varies and it is not guaranteed that you will get in. Each candidate much go through the application process which you can find when the desired clinic you would like to attend opens. The clinic is a two day lecture based clinic with opportunities to learn and network. Participants must attend the entire clinic in order to be eligible for certification. The minimum age for participation is 18. The registration fee is $565 - $595 depending on location. It does not include lodging, meals, any travel expenses or the background check fee.

Criminal History Check
Coaching certification candidates must pass a criminal history check through the NCSI background check application in order to attend a coaching clinic and become certified. The fee is $20 for most U.S. citizens but does vary by state. International background checks cost more and vary by country. Fees for the background check are not included in the clinic registration fee. Instructions on how to complete the background check are sent to candidates following registration. Each candidate must complete and pass the required background check or entry into the clinic and certification is denied. Any candidate concerned about his or her background should complete the background check prior to registration.

Background checks are based on this criteria (PDF) and instructions can be found here. A failed background check results in the candidate being ineligible for participation in a coaching clinic and certification. There is no appeal process for failed background checks. This applies to current certified coaches as well. There are no exceptions. If the candidate receives a red light and believes the red light is in error, the applicant should work with NCSI directly to resolve the matter.

Online Examination
On the final day of the clinic, attendees are given instructions on how to complete the exam. The exam consists of a 100 question multiple choice test. The exam is online and must be submitted within six weeks of the clinic date in order to become certified. Failure to submit materials by the deadline results in the participant becoming ineligible for certification.

Current USAT Membership
Coaching certification candidates must have a current USAT membership. If you don't have one you can either sign up online or contact Membership.

Current CPR Certification
American Red Cross or The American Heart Association certifications are preferred for first time certification. They must be in-person, online courses are not accepted. AED certifications are not required, but are highly recommended.

CPR Certification must be turned in within three months after the clinic. Failure to do so will result in being ineligible to become a coach with USA Triathlon. 
Signed USOC Coaching Ethics Code
The United States Olympic Committee (USOC) Coaching Ethics Code is to be signed at the time of payment. Failure to do so will result in being ineligible to become a coach with USA Triathlon.

Please note that the certification does expire and the expiration date depends on which clinic you attend. Please click here for recertification policies. Please contact with have any questions.

2020 Level I Clinic Schedule  



Registration Information

January 21-22       
Tempe, AZ To apply for this clinic, please click here. This clinic will take place prior to Endurance Exchange. For questions about this clinic, please email


Register Now

Wait list Policy: Everyone who submits an application on time during the application window is added to the wait list. If you missed the application deadline and want to be placed on the wait list, please email Please note you will be placed at the bottom of the wait list behind those that submitted an application on time. A spot only becomes available if there is a cancellation. If there is a cancellation, the first person on the wait list is contacted. That person is given a specific time by which he or she must reply. If the wait listed person does not reply by that time or does not accept the spot, the next person on the wait list is contacted. The process is repeated until the spot is filled.

Cancellation Policy

Cancellation on registration day to 8 weeks prior to the first day of the clinic: $25 Penalty
Cancellation on or after 8 weeks prior to the first day of the clinic: $50 Penalty
Cancellation on or after 6 weeks prior to the first day of the clinic: $150 Penalty
Cancellation on or after 4 weeks prior to the first day of the clinic: NO REFUNDS AND NO EXCEPTIONS

Level I Recertification Procedure

Certified coaches must recertify every two years to remain informed on the latest information and expertise within triathlon. This process helps coaches continue to challenge themselves and further their knowledge to best serve their athletes. The recertification program also provides support to help cultivate the growing sport of triathlon, as well as USA Triathlon coaching programs. USA Triathlon’s recertification process consists of meeting specified criteria as well as submitting an online recertification application.

In order to recertify as a Level I Certified Coach, coaches must complete:

  • $95 Recertification Fee
  • Online Background Check (Criteria)
  • Current USA Triathlon Annual Membership
  • Online SafeSport Training 
  • Service to the Sport Documentation
  • 15 Continuing Education Units - 5 must be USAT Approved
  • CPR (Initial CPR certification must be completed in-person. CPR recertification can be completed online or in-person.)
  • Signed Ethics Code Agreement
For all recertification information, please see the USA Triathlon Recertification webpage

Applications for this clinic will open up on January 17th and close on January 24th. If you are accepted into the clinic, you will receive an email with a registration link. Notice of acceptance will be emailed to you on January 30th. If you have any questions, please contact the Coaching Certification Coordinator here.

Applications for this clinic are open. Directions on how to apply can be found here

2018 Level I Clinic Schedule 

We are in the process of planning the 2018 Level I Clinics. Please note that the below locations/dates are tentative unless noted as 'finalized.'  The below information is subject to change. I

2018 Level I Clinic Schedule 

We are in the process of planning the 2018 Level I Clinics. Please note that the below locations/dates are tentative unless noted as 'finalized.'  The below information is subject to change. I