Congratulations on completing your Sports Leaders UK qualification and welcome to the UKA website!
As the governing body for athletics in the UK, we work alongside the four home country athletics federations to support the development of our thriving networks of clubs, coaches, officials and volunteers. Much of our work in recent years has focused on working with young leaders and volunteers, and we believe that this experience leaves us well placed to help you achieve your objectives as an athletics leader.
There are athletics clubs across the UK, many of whom are on the look out for volunteers. Many of these clubs are part of larger groups, called Athletics Networks. The networks are in place to help clubs to work together, share resources, and provide the best possible experience for their athletes and volunteers.
As a result, there are many opportunities for you, whatever your passions and interests. If your skills are more related to administration and organisation than to the practical side of the sport, you may be able to find something that excites you within your Athletics Network.
For example, the following roles may be of interest:
- Chairperson / Vice chairperson
- Youth representative
- Website coordinator
- Media officer
- Social secretary
- Results coordinator
- Kit and equipment coordinator
- Events organiser
- Welfare officer
- Membership officer
- Fundraising coordinator
For details of clubs in your area, please use the club search function.
If you are interested in working with athletes, and helping them to improve their performance in a fun and safe environment, you may wish to consider becoming a coach. The first step on the coaching pathway is for you to take part in the Athletics Leaders Award. This is a one day course, that helps you to understand the roles and responsibilities of an athletics leader, learn about the principles of running, jumping and throwing, and to gain experience in delivering a warm up, and a safe, fun, challenging athletics session.
Once you have completed this course, you will be able to assist in club junior sessions working under the supervision of a qualified Licensed Coach (or UKA Level 2), and will be able to lead small groups of young athletes and deliver task card activities. Following the course, if you wish to take more qualifications, we will work with you to help you progress and develop along the coaching pathway.
Details of the coach education courses offered by athletics in the UK can be found here.
As with coaches, officials are a vital component within athletics. Without them, we would have no competition, and the delivery of our events would take place with no structure or regulation. They also work tirelessly to ensure that athletes are able to take part in competition in a safe environment. More and more young people are joining the ranks of technical officials, and with greater opportunities than ever before, this is an exciting and dynamic way to get involved with the sport of athletics.
If you are interested in becoming an official, your first step is to enrol on a Level 1 Assistant Official course. This is a three to four hour course and will focus on what you will do when assisting at an event. You will look at preparation prior to the event, what you will need to do during and following the event. The Award will focus on the specific judging principles of the throws events, the jumping events, track judging, timekeeping and starting. Once you have completed this course, if you wish to take more qualifications, we will work with you to help you progress and develop along the officiating pathway.
One exciting opportunity for young people in athletics is to volunteer at events. Whether they are local league matches, major international meetings, or somewhere in between, events provide an exciting and dynamic experience, which can also provide you with a range of skills that can be transferred to a range of other situations.
You may wish to contact your local club, Athletics Network, county athletics association or county schools athletics association to find out if there are any volunteering opportunities at events within your area. This is a great way to get involved, and will provide you with practical volunteering experience, which will serve you well in your future leadership.
How do you get involved?
To find details of your nearest club or Athletics Network, or for information on coaching and officiating courses, please contact your home country athletics federation:
Athletics Northern Ireland
T: 028 9060 2707
T: 0121 7817271
T: 0131 539 7320
T: 02920 644870