noun, often attributive
\ ˈkōch How to pronounce coach (audio) \

Definition of coach

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a large usually closed four-wheeled horse-drawn carriage having doors in the sides and an elevated seat in front for the driver On special occasions the queen rides in a gold coach.
b : a railroad passenger car intended primarily for day travel Smoking is not permitted in the train's coaches.
c : bus sense 1a toured the city by coach
e : a 2-door enclosed automobile
f : a class of passenger air transportation at a lower fare than first class We reserved two seats in coach.
2 [from the concept that the tutor conveys the student through examinations]
a : a private tutor hired a coach to help her daughter prepare for the test
b : one who instructs or trains an acting coach a birth coach especially : one who instructs players in the fundamentals of a sport and directs team strategy a football coach a pitching coach a gymnastics coach


coached; coaching; coaches

Definition of coach (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to go in a coach
2 : to instruct, direct, or prompt as a coach When an injury ended his playing career, he decided to coach.

transitive verb

1 : to train intensively (as by instruction and demonstration) coach pupils The lawyer coached the witness.
2 : to act as coach of coach tennis coach a team

Illustration of coach

Illustration of coach


coach 1a

In the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from coach


coachable \ ˈkō-​chə-​bəl How to pronounce coachable (audio) \ adjective
coacher noun

Synonyms for coach

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of coach in a Sentence

Noun a track star who has been working with a new coach In those days, people usually traveled long distances in coaches. Verb He coaches the tennis star. He has coached the team for several years. She coached the U.S. gymnastics team at the Olympics. He has coached at the college level for many years. The lawyer admitted to coaching the witness. It was clear that the witness had been coached by her lawyer on how to answer the questions.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Matchmaker and dating coach Julia Bekker also sees the impact of these stereotypes (pdf) in her clients’ requests. Brianna Holt, Quartz, "TV and film play an understated role in perpetuating racial bias on dating apps," 7 Nov. 2019 As the famed coach of David Rudisha, Brother Colm O'Connell, says, the only secret is that there's no secret. Faith Karimi And Idris Mukhtar, CNN, "The reasons why Kenyans always win marathons lie in one region," 6 Nov. 2019 Owls coach Laurie Naill said being able to fine-tune some things against an opponent, albeit in friendly fashion, should serve her team well. Pat Stoetzer,, "Field Hockey: For Liberty and Westminster, ‘states is everyone’s goal’," 5 Nov. 2019 Her current certifications include ACE certified group fitness instructor, ACE health coach, Zumba, Schwinn Indoor Cycling, Kettlebell Concepts, TRX Training, and kickboxing. SELF, "How We Chose the 2019 SELF Fitness Award Winners," 5 Nov. 2019 Ellen DeGeneres recently brought the stars of a viral video of Belgian dancers, coach Jeny Bonsenge and her nine-year-old student, Anae, onto her talk show—at the encouragement of Meghan, Duchess of Sussex. Chelsey Sanchez, Harper's BAZAAR, "Meghan Markle Texted Ellen DeGeneres to Get This Dancing Duo on Her Talk Show," 4 Nov. 2019 Because his grandfather, Lloyd, was the famous Michigan football coach, Chad’s death made news across the country, and brought a rare spotlight to this horrific disease., "In 'Finding Chika,' Albom reveals his family's devastating love story," 3 Nov. 2019 Those enterprise customers can choose various plans at escalating prices, paying more to have Fitbit’s network of human coaches involved in helping people manage their conditions. Megan Thielking, STAT, "Google to acquire Fitbit for $2.1 billion in major health tech deal," 1 Nov. 2019 His bench coach Chip Hale took over the squad and guided Washington for the final 2 1/2 innings. NBC News, "Another road win! Washington Nationals, Houston Astros headed to final game of World Series," 30 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Malzahn and Morris have a longstanding friendship spanning 15 years despite having never coached together, never lived in the same state and never faced each other as head coaches until last season, when Morris first took over at Arkansas. Tom Green |, al, "Gus Malzahn shares reaction to Arkansas’ firing of Chad Morris," 11 Nov. 2019 Schulz has coached three All-Americans, including Nina Klein, who helped the Huskies win their last NCAA title in 2017. Lori Riley,, "Pizza and life lessons are all part of UConn field hockey team’s ‘Goalie World’," 10 Nov. 2019 Gary Barnett coached that team, proving just how tenuous success can be. Teddy Greenstein,, "5 things we learned about Big Ten football after Week 11, including ‘elite’ coaching at Minnesota and a day to remember for Lovie Smith. Plus, our updated power rankings.," 10 Nov. 2019 But Tony Neubauer coached only one season at St. Johns in 2015, going 7-4, before moving to Iowa. Richard Obert, azcentral, "St. Johns coach Mike Morgan gets 336th win, tied with Paul Moro for all-time state record," 9 Nov. 2019 Sanders hasn’t coached beyond helping out in high school. Dave Hyde,, "Hyde5: Deion Sanders as FSU’s coach? Fun but fantasy," 8 Nov. 2019 Nagy, whose offensive background got him the job, has hardly coached him up. Jarrett Bell, USA TODAY, "Opinion: Matt Nagy using Nats to inspire slumping Bears seems like just another gimmick play," 3 Nov. 2019 The moderator, Jan Rybeck, coached the group on how to make someone’s perspective — in this case, on the migrant crisis at the border — more comprehensible. Nellie Bowles, New York Times, "How to Get Trump Voters and Liberals to Talk: Don’t Make Anyone Sit in a Circle," 3 Nov. 2019 Over a year ago, the company launched Fitbit Care, an offering aimed at employers and health plans that pay Fitbit to monitor and coach people with chronic conditions including obesity, diabetes, and hypertension. Megan Thielking, STAT, "Google to acquire Fitbit for $2.1 billion in major health tech deal," 1 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'coach.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of coach


1556, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1630, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for coach

Noun and Verb

Middle English coche, from Middle French, from German Kutsche, from Hungarian kocsi (szekér), literally, wagon from Kocs, Hungary

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about coach

Statistics for coach

Last Updated

13 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for coach

The first known use of coach was in 1556

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for coach


How to pronounce coach (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of coach

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person who teaches and trains an athlete or performer
: a person who teaches and trains the members of a sports team and makes decisions about how the team plays during games
British : a private teacher who gives someone lessons in a particular subject



English Language Learners Definition of coach (Entry 2 of 2)

: to teach and train (an athlete or performer)
: to teach, train, and direct (a sports team)
chiefly British : to teach (a student) privately rather than in a class


\ ˈkōch How to pronounce coach (audio) \

Kids Definition of coach

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a large carriage that has four wheels and a raised seat outside in front for the driver and is drawn by horses
2 : a person who instructs or trains a performer or team
3 : a person who teaches students individually
4 : a railroad passenger car without berths
5 : the least expensive seats on an airplane or a train


coached; coaching

Kids Definition of coach (Entry 2 of 2)

: to teach and train

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on coach

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for coach

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with coach

Spanish Central: Translation of coach

Nglish: Translation of coach for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of coach for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about coach

Comments on coach

What made you want to look up coach? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


the exactly right word or phrasing

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Pass the Little Ribbons: A Pasta Word Quiz

  • rotelle pasta
  • Match the pasta to its meaning in English: Rotelle
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!