The NICA Coach Licensing Program strives to ensure that coaches are sufficiently knowledgeable so as to have a positive impact on NICA student-athletes.  The Professional Development requirements are intended to educate NICA volunteers, both new and experienced, in the industry best-practices for a wide range of topics. A number of formats are provided to allow the greatest opportunity for participation.

Leaders’ Summit Webinars Non-NICA Courses Online Courses Credentialing Tests
Primary training seminar, including NICA On-the-Bike Skills Training, Risk Management, and NICA Student-Athlete Coaching Philosophy Free webinars ranging from information on the NICA Rulebook, to How to Start and Manage a NICA Team. Some non-NICA courses can count for continuing educational credit.  Ex: IMBA Trail Building Class, USAC training, etc. Positive Coaching Alliance online coaching program, TrueSport Coaching Education, & CDC’s Heads up on Concussion in Youth Sports Risk Management, NICA Student-Athlete Coaching Philosophy, & CDC’s Heads up on Concussion in Youth Sports

Leaders’ Summits

The annual Leaders’ Summits, hosted by each NICA League, bring together all coaches—both new and experienced—to develop skills and knowledge, share strategies, and build community. These conferences promote a holistic approach to coaching that creates an environment in which young people can grow and thrive, and are the best opportunity for new coaches to become acquainted with the best practices of coaching NICA student-athletes.  Click here for more information.

Self-report Leaders’ Summit attendance to your coach license in the NICA Pit Zone.

Leaders’ Summit attendance is a level 3 licensing requirement.  The first time a coach attends a Leader Summit credit is applied to the licensing requirement. Any time a coach attends a subsequent leader summit, that attendance can be applied to CEU’s.


Maintaining NICA Level 2 and 3 certification requires three (3) and nine (9) continuing educational units (CEUs) every three (3) years respectively.  These units may be obtained by attending the Leaders’ Summit seminar, or by participating in specified* online webinars provided by NICA and partnering organizations.

Please note: Risk Management 1, 2 and 3 and NICA Student Athlete Coaching Philosophy cannot be used for the CEU requirement.

For upcoming Webinar’s click here.  If you would like to request a particular webinar, email  The online webinars are worth one (1) continuing educational unit each.

Self-report webinar attendance to your coach license in the NICA Pit Zone.

* Webinars that qualify for Level 2 and 3 CEU are clearly labeled as such in the description of the course.

Risk Management 1

Risk Management 2

Risk Management 3

NICA Student-Athlete Coaching Philosophy

Non-NICA Courses

If you feel you have taken a class that might qualify for NICA CEUs, please self-report to your coach license in the NICA Pit Zone.  If it does qualify, NICA Coach Licensing will update your License Status in the Pit Zone.  If we have any questions, we will follow up via email.  For example, the IMBA Trail Building School is one of those programs, see more information below.

REI Outdoor School
REI and NICA have teamed up to offer NICA coaches the opportunity to earn CEUs for REI’s mountain bike skills instruction and bike maintenance programming. Various regions will have different programming options available, so check out the link below for classes near you. Bike skills instruction focuses on on-the-bike skills and takes place on local trails. These programs can last anywhere from 2 hours to a full day. Bike maintenance programming typically takes place at REI stores with qualified technicians serving as instructors.

To find your nearest REI Outdoor School programming, click here and look for programming with the “NICA CEU Eligible Programming” link.

IMBA Trail Building School
IMBA and NICA have partnered together to provide NICA Coach Licensing CEUs (3 units) for attending IMBA’s Trail Building School.  The one day class teaches IMBA’s philosophy and trains local volunteers and land managers on how to build and maintain sustainable singletrack. The school involves three hours of in-class training followed by four hours of in-the-field curriculum doing hands-on trail work and field instruction. Plan this classroom session for Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon. For more information click here.

For upcoming IMBA Trail Building Schools and locations click here.


Online Courses

NICA has partnered with a number of organization to offer the necessary curriculum needed to meet your desired level of licensing.

Positive Coaching Alliance
NICA has partnered with the Positive Coaching Alliance ( which offers “The Double-Goal Coach” online webinar to NICA Coaches.  The interactive workshop introduces PCA’s Double-Goal Coach model and provides an in-depth review of the three principles around which it is built: Honor the Game, Fill Emotional Tanks, Re-define “Winner”. The course costs normally $30, but is only $18 with the NICA membership discount codes.  Please fill out the Coach Benefit Request Form for these discount codes. The course is worth 1.5 CEUs.

TrueSport® Coaching Education
NICA has partnered with USADA and TrueSport to provide coaching education that is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Coaching Education (NCACE). TrueSport’s coaching education is an online, self-guided learning platform empowering coaches – the most significant influencers in young athletes’ lives – with the knowledge and resources to cultivate, champion, and uphold the rich promise and highest potential of sport. The program includes three brief, distinct modules that work together to comprise TrueSport Coaching Certification, and utilizes engaging and interactive instructional tools. It promotes the principles of TrueSport and the renewal of the true spirit of athletic competition through instruction on:

  • developing a coaching philosophy and ethics;coach_clipboard3
  • effective communication and problem-solving techniques with athletes and parents;
  • drug-free sport (performance-enhancing substance prevention);
  • responsibility for sound nutrition and healthy training habits; and
  • supplement and energy drink awareness.

The full three-module course is $49.95, but is offered to NICA members for only $25.00. Click here for the Three Course Bundle, apply ‘Nicacoach18’ in the coupon area at checkout so that the discount is applied.  After completion of the webinar, please upload TrueSport Coach Certificate to your coach license in the NICA Pit Zone.  Each module is worth one (1) CEU.

CDC: Heads Up Online Training Course
Concussions might be an injury you as a coach will come upon.  As part of the NICA Coach License Program we now require all coaches complete the CDC’s Heads Up: Concussion in Youth Sports annuallyThis is a free, online course available to coaches, parents, and others helping to keep athletes safe from concussion. It features interviews with leading experts, dynamic graphics and interactive exercises, and compelling storytelling to help you recognize a concussion and know how to respond if you think that your athlete might have a concussion. Once you complete the training and quiz, upload completion certificate to your coach license in the NICA Pit Zone.

Click here to take the course.

Credentialing Tests

In order to stay up to date with relevant information NICA coaches must maintain annual testing proficiencies (required test(s) are details in the table below). New coaches will need to attend webinars that correspond with each test, while returning coaches may simply re-test annually; returning coaches that do not pass a test will need to attend another webinar before re-testing again.


Level 1 

Level 2 

Level 3 

 Risk Management 1  Required Annually  Required Annually  Not Required
 Risk Management 2  Not Required  Required Annually  Not Required
 Risk Management 3  Not Required  Not Required  Required Annually
Level 3 Exam Not Required Not Required Required
 NICA Student-Athlete Coaching Philosophy  Not Required  Required  Required

Contact Coach Licensing if you have any questions. Once you complete the tests, upload a screen shot of your results to your coach license in the NICA Pit Zone.