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See your sports career take off.

Byline: Leanne McGrath

WORLD Cup, Wimbledon, the Open ... and now the Common-wealth Games.

What a summer it's been for armchair sports fans.

All over the country, we have been cheering on our favourites as they battle for victory and the ultimate trophy.

But behind every top athlete is a professional coach training them for sporting success.

If you think you have what it takes to train the cream of the crop, then Reid Kerr College in Paisley want to hear from you.

Their Higher National Diploma (HND) course in Sports Coaching and Sports Development can help give enthusiasts the opportunity of a challenging and fun career in the sports industry.

Coaching is an emerging profession which encourages good values, high standards and enthusiasm for sport.

Two students already on target for success thanks to Reid Kerr are Kirsty McNicol, 20, from Ayr and 19-year-old Karen Penglase from Pollok.

Both are studying for their HND in Sports Coaching and Sports Development and loving every minute of their course.

As well as showing they have what it takes to be professional sports coaches, the talented girls have also been showing off their skills on the football pitch.

Both play for the Scottish Women's National Football Squad and scored in a fantastic 4- 0 win over Belgium in a European Women's Championship qualifier.

Both girls are determined to make the grade as professional footballers in the future and are putting their training at Reid Kerr into practice to help keep them on a winning streak.

Kirsty said: "The course has been an excellent opportunity to develop a mix of practical and theoretical skills.

"This has been backed with constant support and good training from the staff at the college."

THE students are about to begin a five-week placement at Sommerset Park, home to Ayr United Football Club.

There, they will coach the under-12s squad and other youth teams in the art of the beautiful game.

But the Sports Coaching courses offer more than just learning to kick a ball about.

Students have a chance to follow a varied programme of teaching, incorporating education in many subjects.

The Scientific Study of Performance, Introduction to Marketing, Principles of Sports Coaching and Workplace Experience and Nutrition are just some of the courses budding athletes can sign up for.

There is also a chance to select units of personal interest including Fitness Testing, Circuit and Resistance Training and Management and Practice.

Courses also exist for anyone interested in sport and recreation with a HNC/D in Fitness, Health and Exercise.

David Gemmel, senior lecturer in Health and Fitness at Reid Kerr, said: "Sports Coaching and Fitness and Exercise programmes at the college are designed to offer units recognised by industry which can lead to first rate employment opportunities.

"A key element of both programmes is a work placement, organised by the students themselves.

"This gives candidates a balance of the practical and theoretical aspects of industry operations."

Students seeking entry on to these courses require SQA Modules, Highers and Standard grades or other relevant qualifications and experience.

If you think you have what it takes to help others reach the peak of their sporting career, call Reid Kerr's student services unit on 0800 0527343.
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Copyright 2002 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Aug 1, 2002
Words:537
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