Improving diversity in endurance sports
We believe that endurance sports are good for people and people are good for endurance sports.
That’s why we created the Coaches of Color Initiative, whose mission is to provide meaningful support and opportunities for people of color who aspire to successful careers as endurance coaches. In so doing, we hope to enrich the endurance sports experience for everyone by fostering a more diverse and inclusive community.
Let's do this -- together
What we do
The Coaches of Color Initiative (COCI) operates by awarding apprenticeship grants. Applicants are sought through various public channels (social media, press releases, etc.) in four-week windows, with each new search triggered when full funding for the next grant is in place. To qualify, prospective applicants must identify as a person of color/racial minority and have an established interest in pursuing a career as an endurance coach. Grant recipients are selected by the 80/20 Endurance Foundation Officers and Advisory Board based on an assessment of an application form and a written and/or video personal statement.
The chosen individuals receive a $1,000USD monthly stipend from the 80/20 Endurance Foundation for a period of 9 months. When ready, grant recipients also enjoy opportunities to gain further experience and generate additional personal income by creating custom training plans and taking on individual athlete clients.
The ultimate goal is to leave grant recipients fully prepared to prosper as an endurance coach when the 9-month apprenticeship concludes. Apprenticeship alumni will also be encouraged to remain professionally involved with 80/20 Endurance as mentors to future grant recipients and in other ways. Applicants who are not selected do not come away emptyhanded, but have the opportunity to receive certification as 80/20 Endurance coaches and to be added to the COCI database, an online resource for athletes seeking to work with a coach of color.
Grant recipients undergo a comprehensive apprenticeship experience that includes free training and certification as an 80/20 Endurance coach, one-on-one mentoring sessions with COCI advisors, and involvement in various 80/20 Endurance coaching activities such as creating coaching content (video tips, blog posts, etc.) and participation in forum discussions.