Volunteering in Sports Education in Costa Rica

Volunteer to teach sports in Costa Rica and make a difference in the lives of disadvantaged school children in rural Alajuela province. In Latin America, physical education is an important part of the curriculum, but budget constraints mean that many schools can’t afford to employ a full-time PE teacher. Sports education volunteers provide students with the opportunity to learn new sports, develop their skills and foster a love of fitness.

Working at schools throughout San Ramon, you will introduce first to sixth-grade school children to a range of sports, help them develop team playing skills and enjoy getting active. Equipment is limited so volunteers often have to apply creative thought to lesson plans, making classes fun and educational with minimal resources.

Program Video

You don’t need to have any professional sports experience or teaching qualifications to join the project. There will always be a teacher available for supervision and language help. However, if you have a particular skill or experience in a specific sport, feel free to share your knowledge with the students.

If you are passionate about sports and fitness and have intermediate Spanish speaking skills, download our program brochure to find out more about volunteering in sports education in Costa Rica.

Quick facts

  • Program: Volunteer Costa Rica
  • Location: San Ramon
  • Minimum Duration: 2 Weeks
  • Language Requirement: Int. Spanish
  • Airport Pick-up: Yes, for $75
  • Travel Insurance Not included
  • Suitable for Groups: No
  • Region: Alajuela
  • Project Site: Elementary & High Schools
  • Minimum Age: 18
  • Accommodation: Dorm Home
  • Meals: 2 Meals Daily
  • Start Dates: Every Other Friday
  • Suitable for Families: Yes

Your role as a volunteer

Volunteers joining the Sports Education Project in Costa Rica will help plan and deliver PE lessons under the supervision of a qualified teacher. You will also assist teachers with lesson preparations, encourage students to become physically active, introduce children to new sports and help out with school events and competitions.

Tasks may include:

  • Assisting teachers in preparing sports classes
  • Teaching children about new sports
  • Assisting and taking part in sports training and inter-school competitions
  • Supervising children during recession and lunch

Work schedule

Sports education volunteers work four days per week, from Monday to Thursday. You will usually work in the mornings between 7 am and 12 pm or in the afternoons from 1 pm until 3 pm, but this may change depending on the school where you are placed.

Journey to work

The sports education center is within a 30-minute walk or a short bus ride from our volunteer dormitory.

Closed dates

The Sports Education project in Costa Rica is closed from the second week of December until the second week of February, and for one week preceding Easter Sunday. There is also a mid-term break for the first two weeks of July.

Project Photos

Project Location

Project Reviews & Testimonials

uVolunteer is the greatest thing I have ever done.

I had no idea what to expect from our first visit to Escuela La Palma, But I was ready to help out however I could.

My initial reaction was shocked at how understaffed the school was and how much more could be done to help the kids achieve their full potential. Of course, some of them desired nothing more than to play soccer.

My official job was PE and Sports Instructor, but I also taught English two nights a week to adults, and helped coach and teach tennis to groups and individuals.

My two schools were night and day in which I taught PE. One was close to rural, and the kids were wild, the school was organized, and the principal was absent most of the time. The other school was more organized and ran like clockwork, and the principal has taught there for 40 years, not an exaggeration.

My time has been the best time of my life, and I do not say that lightly, the people and the places that I've been have been truly incredible.

I came to Volunteer in San Ramon in mid-June 2009. Prior to going to San Ramon I traveled with my family for a week and spent 3 weeks in the language school in San Jose. The language school was arranged for me by uVolunteer. My time there helped me improve my Spanish tremendously and also helped me get accustomed to life in Costa Rica.

I learned to adapt to different people as well as living and traveling with them.

Costa Rica is a beautiful place. Loved the experience. Would definitely come back. How can I forget the activities, zip lining, horseback riding to a waterfall and swimming in it as well as white water rafting. This trip was one of my top three most amazing experiences in my life.

I settled into San Ramon pretty quickly, as it's very easy to get around and everyone was quite helpful.

My project itself was amazing! I came to Costa Rica to volunteer as a physical education teacher to kids in grades one through six. When I got here, I spent one week in Spanish school which gave me some basic knowledge of the language. Teaching and living with people who spoke Spanish helped me to improve even more.

Living in Costa Rica for two weeks has been extremely rewarding and eye opening experience.

Life here is so much different than life in the US, but very similar in other ways, I feel like I can both relate to and learn from the people that live here. Having the opportuny to travel to different places inside Costa Rica was great.

I've had a great experience in Costa Rica.

The weekend trips were amazing. I was able to meet new people and get close to them. I definitely had a great experience that I won't forget.

Costa Rica Information Brochure

If you are interested in joining the program in Costa Rica, you should download and read our destination guide.

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