What is PLAYcoach?

PLAYcoach is used by coaches, physiotherapists, athletic therapists, exercise professionals and recreation professionals to determine their perception of a child’s level of physical literacy. It includes questions that cover the child’s ability, confidence, participation and more. 

To simplify things, we’ve broken down PLAYcoach into five subsections:

1. Physical Literacy VAS
2. Cognitive Domain
3. Environment
4. Motor Competence
a.  General Motor Competence
b.  Balance
c.  Object Control
d.  Locomotor
5. Fitness

Who can use PLAYcoach?

PLAYcoach should be used by a person with a very good understanding of human movement and with formal movement analysis training. This assessment provides one perspective of a child’s level of physical literacy, while the other PLAY tools each provide a different perspective.

For a parent: Ask the coach of your child’s sport program to fill out PLAYcoach if you’re looking for some extra insight into your child’s physical literacy. An NCCP-certified coach will typically be knowledgeable about how your child moves and reacts in different physical activity scenarios, as well as about the child’s current level of physical literacy. Make sure that the coach has spent enough time with your child to provide an adequate assessment – typically after about one month of exposure.  

As a coach, physiotherapist, athletic therapist, exercise professional or recreation professional : Once you have spent some time with the child (more than four weeks), use PLAYcoach in conjunction with the other PLAY tools to create a baseline assessment of the child’s current level of physical literacy. Use the baseline to create goals and track improvement. You and the child should establish realistic goals (where the child wants to be) and a manageable process to reach them.


  1. Read through the PLAYcoach Form and answer each question with the help of the PLAYcoach Workbook

  2. Score your form with the help of the PLAYcoach Score Sheet located at the back of the workbook

  3. Take Action: Review a list of calls-to-action in your PLAYcoach Workbook or on the registered side of our website.

  4. Remember to use the PLAYcoach tool along with the other PLAY tools to see all perspectives of your child’s level of physical literacy


  • The examples given in PLAYcoach come from many different scenarios and sports in order to provide some diversity. These examples are specific to each question, and do not represent a complete assessment. The tool must be filled out by one coach for one child (typically for one sport setting).
  • Each question refers to your perception of the child
  • There are no right or wrong answers
  • There is no need for measuring – simply give your best estimate for each question
  • If you don’t know, don’t answer

Download PLAYcoach Resources