noun, often attributive
\ ˈkōch \

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

d : trailer sense 1b

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

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Other words from coach


coachable \ˈkō-chə-bəl \ adjective
coacher noun

Synonyms for coach

Synonyms: Noun


Synonyms: Verb

counsel, guide, lead, mentor, pilot, shepherd, show, tutor

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Examples of coach in a Sentence


a track star who has been working with a new coach In those days, people usually traveled long distances in coaches.


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.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The boys, aged 11 to 16, and their 25-year-old coach had planned to explore the cavern complex for about an hour after soccer practice on June 23. NBC News, "Boys rescued from Thailand cave to be discharged from hospital on Thursday," 14 July 2018 There were other such displays of emotion from Djokovic, who is prone to yelling at himself or at his coach. Howard Fendrich,, "Novak Djokovic outlasts Rafael Nadal in five sets to reach fifth Wimbledon final," 14 July 2018 And its coaches have usually been dressed for success (aside, perhaps, from Arsène Wenger in his giant Arsenal puffer coat). New York Times, "How Gareth Southgate Made the Waistcoat a Surprise World Cup M.V.P.," 13 July 2018 The 12 Wild Boars players and their coach had entered the cave to go exploring June 23 but monsoon rains filled the tight passageways, blocking their escape. Fox News, "Mission accomplished and boys healthy, rescuers head home," 13 July 2018 The young boys of the Wild Boars soccer team, all between the ages of 11 and 16, and their 25-year-old coach Ekkapol Chantawong became trapped inside the Tham Luang cave on June 23, when sudden rains flooded their exit. Casey Quackenbush, Time, "After a Successful Cave Rescue, Thailand's Navy SEALs Will Add Cave-Diving to Their Training," 13 July 2018 And though that may not sound relaxing, Bill Hader (who stars as Barry), Henry Winkler (who plays his acting coach), and the rest of the cast manage to bring a sweetness that makes the whole thing almost heartwarming. Emily Dreyfuss, WIRED, "9 Emmy-Nominated Shows You Can Binge to Escape Reality," 13 July 2018 One answer is that their 25-year-old coach, a former Buddhist monk, reportedly taught the boys to meditate, to help slow their breathing and quiet their nerves. Jennifer Breheny Wallace, WSJ, "Thai Cave Rescue Highlights the Value of Teaching Children to Meditate," 13 July 2018 Yes, there’s already a documentary about the Thai soccer team and their coach who were stuck in a cave for 18 days. Heather Hansman, Outside Online, "The Newest Adventure Movies You Can Watch Right Now," 12 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The West Division coaching staff will handle the experienced players while the East Division staff over-sees the rookies., "Freedom players head to all-star game," 10 July 2018 Between Van Tol, who played and coached at Gonzaga, and Richardson, whose contacts in Idaho and surrounding states are plentiful, the baseball program has two coaches with Northwest roots and pro experience. Dave Southorn, idahostatesman, "Boise State baseball's first assistant coach is a former Bronco football player," 2 July 2018 Then Djokovic hired Andre Agassi to coach him, which was nothing short of a coup, given that the eight-time slam champion and former world No. Andrew Lawrence, The Atlantic, "What’s Going on With Novak Djokovic?," 30 June 2018 Now the Ravens quarterbacks coach, Urban must gain the respect of his new team before his first game on M&T Bank Stadium’s home sideline, a key for taking on balancing rookie Lamar Jackson and veteran Joe Flacco. Katherine Fominykh,, "After mentoring Michael Vick, new Ravens quarterbacks coach James Urban getting Lamar Jackson up to speed," 13 July 2018 Oakley currently coaches the Killer 3s of the Big3 league. Jenna West,, "Charles Oakley Arrested at Las Vegas Casino for Cheating," 12 July 2018 Aprile coached the Panthers' program for the past 10 seasons after being promoted from an assistant's role in 2008. Gentry Estes, The Courier-Journal, "Pitt's Holly Aprile hired as Louisville's new softball coach," 8 July 2018 Jones, who has been teaching and coaching for the last 20 years, has helped fill a trophy case in recent months. Oscar Terrones,, "La Jolla High volleyball coach Dave Jones earns national honor," 2 July 2018 O’Connor on Saturday coached his final match with Louisville City, a 3-3 draw with New York Red Bulls II. Jordan Culver, Pro Soccer USA, "Dom Dwyer, Orlando City looking forward to arrival of new coach James O’Connor," 1 July 2018

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.

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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


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


see coach entry 1

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Learn More about coach

Dictionary Entries near coach






coach box


Statistics for coach

Last Updated

18 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for coach

The first known use of coach was in 1556

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More Definitions for coach



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

: 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)

: to teach (a student) privately rather than in a class


\ ˈkōch \

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

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