AFL High Performance (Level 3) Coaching Course

The AFL High Performance (Level 3) Coaching Course is conducted annually for a maximum of 24 candidates all of whom are invited to attend. The course is the responsibility of the AFL Coaching Development Manager who works closely with both the AFL Coach Development Coordinator and the State Coaching Managers in organising all aspects of the course.


The AFL High Performance Coaching Course is designed to provide identified coaches with the education and development to prepare them to coach at AFL clubs. It will also develop the competencies to coach in other (similar) high performance football environments.

The course aims to develop a set of core competencies required to coach effectively in AFL clubs, based on five primary functions of coaches outlined in the International Sport Coaching Framework.


Target Group

The target group is coaches who are currently coaching at AFL clubs or aspiring to do so and do not have this qualification. This would include AFL Academy Coaches, State League (including NEAFL) Coaches, TAC Cup, State U18 competitions, state representative teams – senior, U18. Coaches who wish to develop their high performance coaching competencies may also apply.

The course was reviewed and restructured in 2015, in consultation with the AFLCA and state coaching managers, to more effectively meet the intended course outcomes.

Course structure

In 2017, the course will include a number of segments.

  1. An initial three and a half day course segment - Monday 2nd to Thursday 5th October.
  2. A second two-day course segment - scheduled for 2018 (dates to be confirmed).
  3. An online coaching module from the University of Queensland’s Graduate Certificate in Sports Coaching:-
    Quality Coaching: Understanding, informing and Advancing Practice
  4. A set of practical assessment tasks - completed in course and in the coaching workplace between and following course segments.
Course Modules

The 2017 course will include modules as they apply to a high performance coaching program in Australian Football:

  • Coaching philosophy
    • Coaching Methods
    • Presentation skills
    • Communication strategies, including football and social media
    • Program management
    • Leadership
    • Understanding yourself and players
    • Principles of play, game plans
    • Game analysis
    • Advanced skill development
    • Training programs and practice design
    • Champion Data statistics
    • SportsCode – video coding essentials for coaches
    • Applied Psychology
    • AFL policies and regulations
    • Personal brand and public relations
2017 Course - Initial dates and venue

An initial three and a half day course segment conducted in Melbourne from Monday 2nd to mid Thursday 5th October 2017.

Course Fees

A course levy of $1650 (including GST) per participant will be invoiced on final acceptance into the course as a required contribution towards course costs. Travel to the course is the responsibility of the participant or their club/sponsor. Other than travel, all costs associated with the course including accommodation, meals, venue hire, presenter and consultant/course mentor fees, assessment costs, online components and course materials are covered by the AFL, which subsidises the course beyond what is contributed by individual participants through the course levy. 

NOTE: There is a practical component on coding and using vision in coaching. This will include the provision of a temporary SportsCode licence if candidates do not have one. As SportsCode, which is the industry standard in this area and used by all AFL clubs, only runs on Apple Mac computers, you will be required to bring an Apple Mac laptop to the course (Macbook Pro). This component will depend on the current level of experience candidates have with the SportsCode system. A preliminary module will be provided for candidates who are not basically competent with SportsCode.

Application details

Coaches wishing to nominate for the course must meet the following criteria:

• Currently coaching in one of the AFL target group programs as listed

• Hold a current AFL Level 2 Coach Accreditation

• Indicate preparedness to assist in AFL and state football development programs

• Have endorsement of their AFL club, AFL Academy or state body (state coaching manager)

Coaches are required to complete the “AFL Application for invitation” form and submit it to the AFL Coaching Development Manager ( In addition applicants should copy (cc) their relevant state coaching manager to the submission of application.

Download the current application form and selection procedures here

Applications to be received no later than COB Thursday 13 July 2017




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