For information on coaching courses see the separate Coaching Accreditation page that explains the Australian coaching pathway and specific orienteering coaching course options.

To compliment the skills learned in coaching courses, on this page, we have pulled together some ideas and links to resources that are useful for orienteering coaches.

NOTE: To download the Word documents or the Powerpoint presentations made available on this page, it may be necessary to right-click the link and select the top option to “Open link in new tab”.

Talk to other coaches

Coaches are encouraged to seek a mentor and to share their coaching challenges with other experienced coaches.  Active Level 1 and above coaches are encouraged to join the Orienteering Australia Coaching Group on FaceBook.  This is a forum where coaches can share ideas and support each other.


OA has a YouTube channel which includes a number of introductory videos.  There’s also plenty of other videos available on YouTube to help viewers learn what the sport is about and some of the skills.  It is worth searching YouTube regularly as new videos are often added to the library.


There are some great books available on orienteering coaching.  For example, we recommend Crowood Sports Guides’: Orienteering – Skills, Technique, Training by Carol McNeill.

Another book which is helpful for orienteers to use is The Little Book of Orienteering Techniques by Jean Cory-Wright.  This is available as a free pdf version or an updated edition with colour diagrams and images by Ed Cory-Wright can be ordered by contacting Jean via this link to Orienteering New Zealand.

Orienteering Australia Coach in Residence Program

Since 2012 Orienteering Australia has conducted a Coach in Residence program, which initially targeted overseas orienteering students and which has proved very popular. A coach-in-residence usually stays for 6 months, and in some states this is a requirement, but any time from 3 to 12 months is possible. More recently one State, NSW, has utilised a ‘home-grown’ student.

Coaches-in-residence are sought by Orienteering Australia’s  State Associations mainly for their Winter programs, but for some States also for their Summer programs.

This is an exciting opportunity for young people to visit Australia and coach orienteering, make maps, or deliver orienteering programs to schools. You will live with local families and have fun orienteering.  More details on the program can be found on the Coach-in-Residence website.

Resources for Introductory and School Level Coaching

Orienteering Australia has developed a national curriculum and supporting program delivery guides for orienteering in both Primary and Secondary Schools. More information, and links to download the resources, can be found on the Sporting Schools page.

In addition to these OA resources used across the country in schools, a number of the States have compiled extra material to supplement these resources, and to use outside of the school environment for introductory coaching.

From the British Orienteering Federation:

  •  Xplorer Schools is a cross-curricular resource, designed to introduce orienteering to Primary school pupils.
  • resources for orienteering based games and activities with associated resources can also be freely downloaded
  • Better Orienteering , also from the UK are the resources from Duncan Bayliss. Duncan started orienteering as an M10 with Wrekin Orienteers, encouraged by his father. Now an M50 he still runs for Wrekin.

From Orienteering Canada:

First class suggestions on orienteering group games, armchair orienteering activities and group training options.

From Sweden:

Sweden’s Göran Andersson and Silva have also teamed up to produce COOL, AWESOME and EDUCATIONAL material for introducing orienteering, with versions also available for both primary and high schools (in English). It should be noted that the downloadable High Schools version is a large document (35MB). A combined digital version is now available here.

 Development of cross-country navigation skills

Check out an interesting skill progression chart for a typical teen orienteer produced by Orienteering Canada.  More details are also available.

The Orienteering Canada website also includes a lesson plan bank with some excellent lesson plans for introducing children to bush orienteering.  There’s also a treasury of group orienteering games, armchair orienteering activities and training activities.

Most suitable for Level 1 and above coaches focussing on bush orienteering, contains loads of training ideas.

General athlete and coaching resources

Sport Australia’s website  contains plenty of support material for coaches.  It ranges from ‘How to Motivate Young People’ to ‘Coaching Older Athletes’, nutrition information and session planning.

The Australian Clearing House for Sport also contains a vast library of general sport and training information.

Comprehensive sport coaching resources that are useful for athlete fitness and psychological development planning are available through sites such as BrianMAC.

To supplement orienteering coach training, coaches might also consider undertaking the Level III and IV personal trainer qualifications, strength and conditioning coach training or specific running coach training.  Athletics Australia has a specific running coaching streams which may supplement skills.  Courses are conducted by State athletics associations.

Play by the Rules has general resources available, such as    Guidelines for coaches when dealing with children.

Online quizzes and printables

Software for orienteering and online simulation games

The International Orienteering Federation publishes a summary of most of the software which is available.  With the increasing prevalence of gps tracking, post race or training analysis of route choice and performances are very powerful tools.

Most commonly used gps tracking software for race analysis:



Some of the more common games are:

Course and activity planning software for coaches

Purple Pen is user-friendly software which is a free download.  It’s great for planning courses.  A big benefit is that it allows course setting on a pdf or jpeg image which can be particularly useful for schools.

OCAD is very powerful orienteering specific software which is ideal for planning technical training exercises.  As it can be tricky for infrequent users, tips have been published on how to use OCAD for some of the more common training formats.


LEVEL 1-2-3 Coaching Syllabus and Accreditation      Nick Dent

Skills and Qualities of a Top Orienteer- Janni Salmi presentation    Nick Dent

Ten week Orienteering program for years F-6″ >Ten week Orienteering program for years F-6      developed by Bridget Anderson


Understand the challenges and support your child in sport with the Sporting Parents: Parenting Potential course.


Here are some links to resources that all coaches can access

WOC Medal winner – Salmi 28

Race Analysis Form

Copy of Skill self evaluation form – blank@2012-02-21T06;29;46

Gueorgiou’s Story

IOF Coaching Conference 2009