Running a Sports Team on a Budget
Running a successful sports team can cost a lot of money. Many people mistakenly think that all you need to be successful is a field, a dedicated coach, and some players. While it is certainly true that you can bootstrap a team that way, if you want to compete or even grow your team and attract beginners, you will need more in terms of space, equipment and kit. You can get some decent rugby drill videos online that will give you ideas for low-cost training, but if you don’t have changing rooms, gear, and accessories, you will only get so far.
When you are trying to reach parents, beginners and casual trainees, things like a changing room that is well-heated, a pitch that is well-lit, and kit that is in good condition will go a long way. If you want to compete, having uniforms is important. You can get sponsorships that will help with getting new uniforms made. In some cases, revenue funding is available to help with the day-to-day costs of running your team, especially if you have a junior team in addition to an adult one.
You don’t need the best, highest tech 3G pitches and floodlights, but you do need to be able to train throughout the year in a clean and safe environment. The good news is that for sports such as rugby and football, there is a lot of aid available financially and in terms of filling the skills gaps regarding running the organisation.
If you are looking for funding, the best place to start is with your local county sports partnership. They will be happy to help you find support. If you can prove that you are using online resources such as www.sportplan.net/ to keep your costs low, funders are more likely to view your application positively.
Sport England understands that coaches are often volunteers and that they do not have a lot of time to devote to administration, marketing and finance. They are happy to offer support and advice regarding those topics. There are other organisations, such as Sported, that also offer good networking opportunities and assistance. If you are serious about growing your club, start working with those organisations to get advice about governance, funding and volunteer management.