Help to pass a BWF Level 1 Tutor Course

Have you ever thought about becoming a BWF Level 1 Coach Tutor?
The skills to be a Tutor are different in many aspects from those of a coach
A Tutor is someone who leads a course for people to become a coach
If you attend a Tutor course with the mindset of a Coach then there is a good chance you will fail


This post will give you tips and thoughts to consider to help you prepare and pass a BWF Level 1 Tutor course.  Although I can’t promise that you will pass, but hopefully you will be prepared for all the tasks and surprises.

I’ve attended a BWF course to become a Level 1 Tutor. The course was organised by Badminton Europe and held in the Kiev, Ukraine over 3 days.

After the course, I asked some of the other coaches for advice they would give someone attending the course.  The next part of the post is based on their ideas and tips. They didn’t all pass but they were motivated to help you.

I need to say a huge THANK YOU to Vasek, Dina, Wojciech, Diara, Hannes, Sasha, Peter and Anton for all their ideas.  Their quotes and phrasing have added lots of value to my experience.

Their advice can be sorted under the following 6 headings
1.   How to prepare beforehand
2.   Have good Questioning skills
3.   Read the BWF manuals
4.   What to expect each day
5.   Be yourself as a Tutor
6.   Final thoughts
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How to prepare beforehand

If you get the opportunity try to do the BWL1 course take it.

Try to find a Coach Education course that you can assist on and watch the Tutors.  It doesn’t necessarily have to be a badminton course, it’s the way the Tutors behave and organises their work, that’s what should interest you.

How and when do they ask questions?  Look at how they engage the participants.  How do they orgaise tasks and critically do they keep to the timing they set out?

Observing someone else Tutor is a great way to prepare yourself for your course.  Espcially if they know why you are there and ask for feedback.

Your course

Don’t forget to complete the pre-course pack.  You will be asked to detail information about yourself and your coaching experience.  The course leader expects it so try not to disappoint them before you even turn up!

Try to find a course in your language.  Generally, courses are in English but there are now more courses in other languages.  There were many people on our course who were not able to understand (speak) English and I think these people were at a disadvantage.

This is a course for coaches to tutor coaches.  You should have some experience with coaching people to become better at a task, not to become a better player.  Think about how you could apply skills from your life or professions you have had.

I recommend that you complete the Online part of the BWF Level 1 before you attend the course.BWF Level 1 online

Not only will it reinforce the material, it will also allow you to experience exactly what the new coaches who attend your course, do once you’ve passed.

Click this image and do it now.  I would allow about 2 hours to complete everything.  However, you can complete it module by module as the programme is aware of how far you complete each time you leave.  There is a downloadable certificate that you will need as proof of your completion.

You must, must read both manuals.  In fact, you need to know your way around the manuls so well that you can visualise tables, charts and key points.

During the course, you will have to quickly go to specific pages.  Spend time both reading and scanning the two manuals, I promise it won’t be wasted time.

Not reading the manual and fully understanding how it was laid out
that was my biggest mistake prior to the course

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Have good Questioning skills

Badmintonadndy.comQuestioning was a big element of this course.  Almost as big as planning.  If you are weak at understanding how to use questions then I recommend you prepare before the course.

BWF will expect you to use lots of open questions skills (why, where, what, how could, please explain, what do you think, etc) instead of close questions (Do You understand?).

These questions should be spread throughout all your delivery to evaluate those people in front of you.

  • Check for understanding questions
  • Asking for ideas questions
  • Casual conversations that include questions
  • Open, “how can I help you” questions


Become accustomed to being asked by the main Tutors – “How could you have done that differently?”, they will ask you lots of questions!

You will be assessed throughout the whole course so be sure to ask questions, give feedback and take on an active role during group tasks.  The course Tutors will always be watching and listening!

Listen to the answers and ask another question based on their reply … practice this!

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Read the BWF Level 1 Manual

BWF Level 1You will be sent an email before the course with both the Tutors manual and the Coach manual.

Read them both!

You don’t have to read every word but I suggest that you look at every page.  Create a mental map in your mind about how both manuals are laid out.  Remember someone has spent many hours creating and organising this information.

This is what the people on my course said about the manuals
  • I found it useful to remember how the Chapters were named
  • The fact that each chapter ends with Coach questions is very useful.  Make sure you test yourself before reading a chapter, how many do you get right?   The answers are in the Tutors manual.  I recommend that you aim for 100%, if not read the chapter a few times and educate yourself
  • The course Tutor will expect you to know and describe the I.D.E.A.S. model
  • Having read the Tutor’s manual this sure would have helped me in the step by step planning as well as getting into the role as a tutor
You will be expected to know your way around BOTH manuals
be able to know where information can be found
I recommend that you start this process at least 2 weeks before, set yourself mini tasks to teach yourself.
You will be setting tasks for others during the course, so start now 🙂

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What to expect each day

BWF Level 1My course lasted for 3 days.  Each day is different and contains challenges and tasks that need preparation.  You will not be given much time to prepare the lessons (between 10-15 mins)

Day 1

Starts around 09:00 and finishes around 18:00.  There was a mixture of classroom and hall.

Then there is evening work finishing around 23:00 or later depending on how fast you work.

You will have both classroom (x2) and on court mini challenges (x2).  Be prepared to work with new people on each challenge (mini lessons) and to work quickly. Make friends and smile, you will need a good teammate.

On our course, you were allowed to choose the topic to deliver from a list presented to us.

In the evening we had 2 pieces of work to prepare. One to hand to the Tutor and the other to deliver the next day. All the information is in the manual if you know where to find it!

Day 2

Starts around 09:00 and finishes around 18:00, it was all in the hall all day and very intense.  You will be given a series of lessons to deliver.

You will also be expected to provide feedback on the other candidates or act as trainee coaches in their lessons.

There is no evening work. We went on a great trip around the city of Kiev. This is the time to swap emails and make new Facebook friends.  For me, this is just as important as attending the course.

These fellow coaches could be great future contacts or mentors.  The opportunity to meet other motivated coaches should not be underestimated.

Day 3

The day will be filled with individual feedback and assessment.

The feedback started around 10:00 and finished at 13:30 as there were 17 people. You will know if you have passed or failed during the interview.

Expect to be asked for your thoughts on the course and where you think you can improve. The feedback will be direct and constructive.  The order of the interviews is normally based on the travel arrangements.

If you have failed you will be given areas to improve on and suggestions on what to do next.

During your assessment session you will be expected to
  • show a high level of group management skills when delivering sessions.  Planning, Distribution, Challenges, Timing, and Reflection to name just a few
  • show how to use goal-setting when planning the sessions.  Do the participants know the goal?
  • control the time during the presentations.  Not just the overall timings but the splits along the way.
  • ensure that you get others to interact and engage with each other.  Be the facilitator.
  • deliver the goal of the session.  Make sure you know what it is!
  • do not talk all the time: it’s not your role to TELL.  It’s your role to create learning environments
  • do not go over the allotted time
  • do not ramble and go off topic, use the BWF information not your own
  • do not talk too quickly, especially if there are people who don’t have English as a 1st language.  Talk at least 20% slower than you think you need.
  • do not try to hide weaknesses try to ask for help from your fellow candidates.  Also use the Tutor.


  • to be flexible; you will not have much time to prepare and will have limited equipment.  Identify the Key points of your presentation.
  • to involve your partner in the planning.  Working in as a team is very important.
  • that the fastest or easiest way to deliver the information is not always the best ie telling is not required here, engagement and discovery using manuals and other candidates is
  • the most important element is that the group is engaged in their own learning
  • take a toolbox of tutor equipment with you: marker pens, blue-tac, post-it notes, spare watch, even good shuttles
  • to ask questions and to use questions to check for understanding
If you are a shy or an introverted person you don’t have to be in the middle all the time but you can’t hide
 You will have to show what you can do

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Be yourself as a Tutor and not a Player

BWF Level 1It may feel strange to you to act as a Tutor if you have always coached players

The role is different! 

If you slip back into coaching and your coaching style is that of ‘Showing & Instructing (telling)’ you may be in big trouble!

I found that it was important to keep reminding myself to wear my Tutors hat.  Always try to think from a tutor’s perspective instead of a Coach’s.

This can feel very strange as some of those faces in front of you may already be experienced coaches.


Your job is to teach the people on the course to become a Coach not improve their playing ability


Don’t worry that these people may be more experienced than you, use that fact.  Ask questions that are designed to draw out their knowledge.   It will help the others in the group, and create discussion and learning.

Treat everyone as someone who wants to learn something new.

You are there to facilitate (help) their development not to deliver a coaching session

You will need to be confident in : planning, delivering, knowing the content (BWF), communication skills, group management skills, getting feedback, checking for understanding and allowing people to enjoy the experience.

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Final thoughts
  • Believe in yourself but be prepared to learn from everyone.
  • Read the manual before the course.  Not on the train or aeroplane the day before!
  • You will feel some discomfort during the course and may not understand some tasks. Ask questions if you don’t.
  • Understand the type of questions you can ask. This is VERY important.
  • Be interested in helping others and show them through your facial expressions.
  • Work hard, be responsible and organise yourself throughout the 3 days.
  • Take a watch, notebook (x2), pen (x3)
  • Practice writing lesson plans before you go on the course.  Lessons for Coach development, not player development
  • Introduce yourself to every new face you see with a smile. Work with everybody and share ideas.
Enjoy the Experience: Love badminton — Live Badminton

You may get your BWF Level 1 certificate great or you may fail the course.

Always remember: the course is a perfect opportunity to find new knowledge, to meet new people, to develop yourself!

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