We have looked at what makes an effective coach, what makes a good coaching session and are now going to look at what makes a good sports club to help you sporting parents.
Contrary to popular belief, a good sports club is not just about the results that they are achieve. They may be an important part of the process for you but there is far more to it than that to ensure your children are safe and in an environment that will allow them to thrive and grow and a place for you to also enjoy the whole experience.
So what should you be looking for look for when choosing a good sports club?
Use the following checklist to help you make informed choices about the choice of sports club for your children:
|What to look for …||Questions to ask and further information||Yes / No|
|Seal of approval||Has the club been properly accredited by external organisations or recognised by its governing body for adopting best practice?|
|Good reputation||Does the club have a good reputation? If so what for?
(Ask other members about their experiences)
|Good management||Can you see clear leadership? Do they communicate regularly with all parties within the club, including you as parents?|
|Culture and ethos||Does the club have a clear culture and ethos?
Does it fit with your requirements?
(Think about game time, number of teams, development etc)
|Open door policy||Is the club open and prepared to listen to any feedback or concerns?|
|Safeguarding policy||Is there a clear procedure for dealing with concerns about poor practice or risks of abuse?
You should know who you and your child can talk to.
|Safeguarding training||Do all staff and volunteers have up-to date and recognised safeguarding training?|
|Named Welfare Officer||Is the club prepared to listen and advise if you have any concerns?|
|Safe recruitment check policy||Is there a clear job description, appropriate references, criminal records checks (eg DBS) for relevant posts?|
|First aid||Does the organisation have guidance on first aid (and ideally a qualified first aider)?|
|Code of Conduct||Is there a Code of Conduct that shows what is required of all parties involved in the club, including the children?|
|Venue and equipment||Are the venue and the equipment safe for use?
Are pitches clear?
Is the equipment regularly checked?
|Consent and emergency contact details||Have you been asked to complete a form which includes all details about you and your child (medical etc)?|
|Social contact with other members||Does the club ensure that all relationships are appropriate between members?|
|Qualified coaches||Are coaches suitably qualified?
Are coaches competent to deliver and oversee the sport or activity safely.
|Acceptable coach to participant ratio||Does the club ensure that there is an appropriate coach to participant numbers ratio?
Does this follow club protocol?
|Internal and external competition||Is it appropriate to your child’s needs and requirements?|
|Away fixtures||Does the club communicate effectively about events? (Transport, arrangements etc)|
|Provide fun and enjoyable experiences||Are all activities appropriate?
(Particularly in coaching sessions but also in all areas of club life for example fundraisers etc)
If you would like to download a WWPIS poster with the checklist and print it then you may do so by clicking below:
We hope that you have found the following checklist useful and hope that we have helped provide you with some things to think about before committing your child to a particular club or sporting experience. As always we wish you the very best of luck in finding the most positive enjoyable, sporting experience for your children.