Super Powers

This tool assists to help an athlete identify informal competences gathered in high-performance sport. By using the tool, competences can be applied to a vocational context to serve to enhance success in entry into the labour market.

Replay Guideline Video
Introducing the tool

Next to formal and non-formal competences, informal competences are crucial factors of successful job performance in a highly dynamic work life. In this environment, athletes compete with other work-seekers for the most attractive jobs. In hiring processes, informally acquired competences act as prime assets that can make the difference between job applicants.

Athletes tend to gather a set of these (transferable) informal competences via their competitive sporting careers. However, in this regard, dual career practitioners regularly report a lack of awareness on the part of athletes.

This is where the tool Super Powers comes into play. It helps athletes identify their informal competences and translate their personal profile into a most valuable labour market currency. The tool can be used stand-alone or in combination with Athlete CV.

How to use

Follow the instructions to apply this tool and browse our manifold resources to find out more about the addressed topic.

About the downloads

The Circle of Competence (pdf) represents a 3-step-process to help an athlete identify their top 3-5 informal competences gathered in their sporting career, provide evidence for these competences, and transfer these competences from a sporting context to a vocational context. The process can be either applied in the course of one or more counselling session(s). The template consists of 3 fields in which each step’s collected results can be inserted. In addition, the template includes a checklist to facilitate the identification of informal competences. The first step involves the identification of competences that the athlete has gathered in their sporting career. These competences can be unique to performance athletes. As athletes begin the process of recognition how many competences they already possess, this often evolves to be an empowering process. The second step involves the athlete substantiating their super powers. Past experiences of actioning these competences during their sporting career serve as valid evidence within the labour market. The final step involves the athlete articulating how their super powers can be transferred from a sporting context to a vocational context. Results can be linked and incorporated into the tool Athlete CV.

  1. Look up the definitions of “Competences and “Informal learning” in the STARTING 11 Dictionary and clarify these terms with the athlete.
  2. Provide the Circle of Competence (pdf) to the athlete.
  3. Use the checklist on page 2 to help the athlete become aware of their super powers. Let the athlete tick off those informal competences that they perceive to have developed. There is also the option to add competences that are not yet included in the checklist. Ask the athlete to reflect upon those 3-5 competences that they perceive as their most outstanding (“super powers”). The athlete should carefully consider which competences developed in their sporting career would put them ahead of others applying for jobs in the labour market. Let the athlete record these 3-5 competences in field 1 of the circle.
  4. Using the identified super powers, ask the athlete to provide concrete evidence (examples) of how and when each competency has been actioned in their sporting career to prove their super powers. This scenario must be as specific and consistent as possible. Let the athlete record key words marking these examples in field 2 of the circle.
  5. Using the results of step 2, let the athlete consider where their top competences will serve them in their vocational future and how their super powers can be best presented in an upcoming application process. If there is a concrete job interview coming up, help the athlete prepare a consistent and tailored storyline to present their super powers. Ask the athlete to collect their key arguments in field 3 of the circle.


  • Competences do not serve athletes only in labour market contexts. Consequently, you can also help athletes reflect upon how their acquired competences can assist them to perform well, both in athletic and educational terms.
  • Coffee, P., & Lavallee, D. (2014): Winning Students are Employable Students – Research Report
  • De Brandt, K., et al. (2018): Exploring the factor structure of the Dual Career Competency Questionnaire for Athletes in European pupil- and student-athletes. International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology.
  • Seipel, K. (2010): Die Kompetenzenbilanz – Das Modell des Zukunftszentrums Tirol. In: MAGAZIN Das Fachmedium fĂĽr Forschung, Praxis und Diskurs. Edition 9, 2010
  • Triebel, C., Lang-von-Wins, T. (2006): Kompetenzorientierte Laufbahnberatung
  • Triebel, C., Heller, J., Hauser, B., Koch, A. (Ed.) (2017): Qualität im Coaching
  • TW1N: Counselling Practice
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In Practice

The tool "Super Powers" in action: See real-life examples of its application in EU dual career practice.