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  • Writer's pictureRola Hamade

HOW DID LIFE COACHING START?

Updated: Jul 16, 2022


LIFE COACHING became a profession and a multi-million-dollar industry in the 1980s as an extension of sports coaching. Having said that, the history of coaching isn’t a particularly straightforward task. Coaching doesn't have a beginning as such, there was no one inventor, or one place of origin.


Coaching is about providing a framework to allow for introspection. By encouraging a person to delve into their own selves and take a structured look at their lives, a coach can help them help themselves and progress towards their goals. These structuring techniques were inspired by techniques used by sports coaches in the late 1900s. The person credited with identifying the self-improving potential of sports coaching is American writer Timothy Gallwey, who published his groundbreaking book “The Inner Game Of Tennis” in 1975. Gallwey observed how tennis players created their own mental blocks on the court by doubting their abilities and picturing failure. He concluded that this kind of negative thinking interfered with the “natural doing process” of the mind and limited the likelihood of success. Sports coaches began to delve into players' lives to identify their personal and psychological blocks.


Fast forward, business people began to notice the similarities between a team of sportsmen on a field and a team of co-workers in a boardroom. This gave rise to the idea of business coaching. Soon, executives, directors, and whole teams of employees were receiving coaching.


It didn't take long for coaching to leave the boardroom and follow workers right into their homes, their relationships, their families and their lifestyles. Modern life became fast-paced, high-pressure and very often incredibly overwhelming. LIFE COACHING offered people space to take a step back, reassess their priorities and move forward towards their goals with much-needed support.


From sports industry to corporates all the way to our homes, today the coaching industry is only gaining in popularity with more and more coaches offering unique and varying services. People turn to LIFE COACHING because it is personalized, forward looking, action oriented, and enjoyable, making them feel clear-headed and empowered.


The estimated market size of the Coaching Industry is $15 billion in 2019 with a total of $7.5 billion worth market value in the US alone. It is expected the market value to reach $20 billion by 2022 with a 6.7% average yearly growth rate from 2019 to 2022. Moreover, according to PwC, the Coaching Industry was the second fastest growing sector in the world.


Having said that, coaching as a profession is still relatively new, the term “coach” is still unregulated - in many parts of the world - meaning that anybody can call themselves a “life coach”, if they want. However, the International Coaching Federation (ICF), the European Mentoring and Coaching Council (EMCC), and the Association for Coaching (AC) filed a common Code of Conduct, ensuring a standard set of industry principles that individuals practicing as coaches are expected to adhere to. Hence, before going on board with any coach, make sure that your coach is credentialed by one of the afore-mentioned bodies to ensure that they are trained, skilled, proficient coaches who adhere to the international coaching industry standards.


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