Frequently Asked Questions
Q: If I am a coach, can I still compete as an eligible skater?
A: Yes, under ER 8.06 of the U.S. Figure Skating Rulebook, an eligible coach can compete in sanctioned qualifying, nonqualifying and club competitions.
Q: Can I coach a synchronized skating team and also skate as a member of that team?
A: Yes, a synchronized coach is treated as any other coach in figure skating; thus, coaching a synchronized skating team does not threaten your eligibility.
Q: Does U.S. Figure Skating require registration for its coaches?
A: If you intend to instruct/coach at any of the following sanctioned activities, you must first go through U.S. Figure Skating's coaches registration process:
- Qualifying and nonqualifying competitions
- Test sessions
- All performances including ice shows, exhibitions, recitals and carnivals
- Any other sanctioned club activities (includes club ice)
In addition, there are Continuing Education Requirements (CER) and PSA membership requirements for coaches of specific levels. Please use the chart on the Coaches Requirements page and CER Categories by Event for Coaches document to determine which requirements you will need to fulfill.
Q: If I do not attend these sanctioned events or competitions with my skater, do I have to complete the requirements?
A: We encourage all facilities and member clubs to enforce all coaching requirements set forth by U.S. Figure Skating.
Q: Does U.S. Figure Skating have any requirements and/or recommendations for coaches?
A: Yes, the recommendations and requirements are available on the Coaches Requirements page.
Q: When is the deadline for me to complete my coaches registration and CER requirements?
A: The annual coach registration and CER requirements must be completed before the event or competition that requires it. Clubs will begin checking compliance starting on July 1 of any membership year. To ensure that coaches have ample time to complete these requirements, please take note of the following:
- Coach registration is available on June 1 of each year and is valid through June 30 of the following year.
- CER testing is available on November 1 preceding the membership year of enforcement i.e. available Nov. 1, 2010 for the year July 1, 2011 - June 30, 2012.
You will need to be compliant before you can participate in any U.S. Figure Skating-sanctioned activity as listed on the Coaches Requirements page, including club ice. Thus, we recommend completing these requirements as soon as possible.
**Due to the technology involved in these coaching requirements, we recommend coaches leave ample time to complete these requirements to avoid last-minute technical issues.**
Q: Does U.S. Figure Skating have any age requirements for coaches?
A: No, U.S. Figure Skating has no rules regarding the age of coaches. However, state and federal laws regulate minimum age requirements for employment. Information on such regulations can be found at www.dol.gov/dol/topic/youthlabor/agerequirements.htm.
Q: Are there any coaches requirements for Basic Skills Instructors?
A: Yes, all Basic Skills Instructors must complete the Basic Skills Instructor Registration ($32 fee). This will cover the cost of a background check and you will receive an instructor manual. In addition, CER Category C courses are highly recommended and are free to take.
Q: Does U.S. Figure Skating offer liability insurance to coaches?
A: Yes, coach's liability coverage is available to U.S. Figure Skating member coaches/instructors. First, read the fact sheet (PDF) and the frequently asked questions (PDF). Once you've done that, you can purchase coaches liability coverage by clicking here.
Q: Does the registration include U.S. Figure Skating membership?
A: No. The coach registration is in addition to membership. All coaches will join U.S. Figure Skating either through home club membership or as an individual member as they have done in the past.
Q: Do I have to do this every year?
A: Yes, the coach registration and CERs are annual requirements. The information you provide to the National Center for Safety Initiatives (NCSI) will be active for two years, and a re-check will be conducted in year two, four, etc. All results will be sent directly to U.S. Figure Skating.
Q: When will I be notified of background screen results?
A: Normal processing time for a first-time screen is 10-14 business days. NCSI will provide the applicant information on checking the status of his or her screen online. Coaches can also check the status of their coach registration by logging into the members only site and clicking on coach registration.
Q: What if I am given a "green light"?
A: The "green light" indicates an individual has passed the background screen with regard to suitability for participation as a coach in all sanctioned U.S. Figure Skating activities. U.S. Figure Skating will verify the purchase of coaches liability insurance for the registration process to be complete.
Q: What if I am given a "red light"?
A: The "red light" indicates an individual does not meet the criteria as suitable for participation as a coach in all sanctioned activities. If a question arises concerning a background search, the applicant will be contacted by NCSI and provided an opportunity to correct potential errors in the applicant's record or to provide additional information. Should an applicant contest a U.S. Figure Skating decision to deny membership or participation in U.S. Figure Skating activities based on a "red light" finding resulting from the background search, the applicant has the right to appeal the decision to U.S. Figure Skating pursuant to a process established by U.S. Figure Skating.
Q: Can I use the results from a different background screening agency?
A: Many organizations are conducting their own background screens of their employees and volunteers. At this time, however, U.S. Figure Skating will only accept the results from NCSI for the coaches registration; no other agency results will be accepted.
Q: What type of insurance coverage do I need?
A: Personal liability coverage with limits of $1 million per occurrence, $5 million aggregate.
Q: Who do I contact if I have questions?
A: Contact U.S. Figure Skating Member Services at 719.635.5200.
U.S. Figure Skating appreciates the cooperation and understanding of all members to help implement this program to ensure that the environment in all U.S. Figure Skating programs is as safe as possible for all participants.