Louise Graham

Visiting Teaching Fellow

Health, Science and Wellbeing

Currently Regional Development Manager at Swim England NE, I have been involved with swimming for around 30 years and was an International level competitor for Great Britain until the age of 19, when I retired through injury. Over the last 20 years as a full-time professional coach, I have gained invaluable knowledge and experience through a variety of full time roles, courses, seminars, workshops and personal development opportunities.

I have been a member of the GB Coaching Panel, ASA Technical Swimming Committee (Talent and Athlete Development Manager) and North East Regional Performance Forum, consulting and advising on the development and improvement of World Class pathways at both National and Regional level.

I completed the UK Sport Elite Coach Programme between 2006-2009; UK Sport Mentor Development Programme 2010-2011; and UK Sport Para Coach 2 Rio in 2014, and currently receiving 1:1 Coach Developer support via UK Sport on the SCiHPS II Programme.  These initiatives included targeted personal development focussed on leadership, communication, reflective practice and building high performing teams. I have more recently qualified as a coach educator delivering all levels within the Swim England framework. I also work as a coach developer across multiple sports, facilitating learning and development.

I have coached International swimmers since 2004 to British and Asian Senior Records, the World, Commonwealth, European and European Junior podium and have represented Great Britain multiple times at Europeans, World Championships and the Paralympic Games.

Academic qualifications

  • MSc Sports Coaching – Staffs Uni
  • Level 4 Swimming Coach
  • Licensed Swimming Coach Tutor
  • First Aid for Mental Health Instructor


Sports Coaching, Coach Development, Mentoring, Coach Education, Female Coaching

Research interests

Coach Development, Female Coaching


Effective Coaching 2 – guest lectures


Graham, L. C., & Blackett, A. D. (2021). ‘Coach, or female coach? And does it matter?’: An autoethnography of playing the gendered game over a twenty-year elite swim coaching career. Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health, 1-16.

in the UK for Quality Education

Sustainable Development Goal 4, Times Higher Education Impact Rankings 2023

for Career Prospects

Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2023

for Facilities

Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2023

for Social Inclusion

The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2023

of Research Impact is ‘Outstanding’ or ‘Very Considerable’

Research Excellence Framework 2021

of Research is “Internationally Excellent” or “World Leading”

Research Excellence Framework 2021

Four Star Rating

QS Star Ratings 2021