Role Models

Create Role Models

A role model is often described as a person who serves as an example of the values, attitudes and behaviours associated with a role.

In sport and coaching, women tend to identify most with “someone like me.”

It is vital that you not only celebrate and promote your high performance female players and coaches, but also the women who coach at a local community level. Being acknowledged by your sport and promoted as a role model is very powerful. A role model is likely to stay in coaching if they feel their coaching is valued.

Coaches are accessible role models to sports participants. They motivate people to play sport, be active and keep coming back. Therefore, it is also important that you support and promote your coaches if you want to retain your players. The latest report from Women’s Sport Foundation, ‘Coaching through a Gender Lens: Maximizing Girls Play and Potential’ found that girls with female coaches were more likely to say their coaches were positive role models, good listeners and people the girls could count on. (N.Zarrett, C. Cooky, & P.T Veliz, 2019).

How do you market role models? 

Show the value you place on your female role models – promote them to the world!

Case studies and profiling 

Develop case studies to tell a story and get a message across in a way that people can identify with. Use pictures of the female coach and use her story to help create an emotional link with the reader, with such content as:

  • How did she get into coaching?
  • Who does she coach/has she coached?
  • Why does she coach?
  • What is the best part of coaching for her?
  • Did she overcome any challenges in becoming a coach or developing as a coach?

The idea is that the women reading this story can relate to this coach and think “I’m like her, I can do that.” As such, always follow this case study with details on what next steps the reader can take to get into coaching. Make the access to further information as easy as possible. If possible, direct her towards a person to speak to.

Chapter 4: Retention Suggested Actions

  • Profile and promote female coaches on your website via case studies as outlined above.


  • Share profiles/case studies with other media outlets who could be interested in promoting the coach even further

  • Set up a Women in Coaching page on your sports website to tell stories and promote women coaches.

View your action list

Use of images as a marketing tool

Images can be very powerful so ensure any information, adverts and articles reflect the women you have coaching in your sport. Look at the images you currently use. What message might they send to women? Do they convey a sense of welcome, being valued and feeling like they belong in the sport?

Chapter 4: Retention Suggested Actions

  • Utilise existing promotional opportunities by ensuring gender balance (i.e. on podcasts, interviews, on social media/website) so that females are highlighted.

  • Add images of women coaches to all coaching resources and all promotional material.

  • Spend time and budget to build up a bank of positive images of women coaching and participating and help your sport market itself as one that welcomes and values women in all aspects of your sport.

  • Write up guidelines for clubs to outline the importance of promoting female coaches and using images of female coaches on their websites and social media.

View your action list