Starting a Team | Parent Leadership | Spectator Guidelines
Starting a Team
Your child would like to play ultimate, but there is no team at the school. What can you do to help organize a team and create playing opportunities?
1. Contact your local and/or state coordinator
Your local and/or state volunteer coordinator can help provide assistance while you are trying to get a new team off the ground. Find your local and state coordinator here.
2. Work with your school or community-based organization
Contact your school or community-based organization to discuss opportunities and/or available resources. In most schools, the best way to interact with the administration is by finding a teacher to sponsor an ultimate club/team. Next, working with the athletic or activities director to find out how to form a new club at the school. Lastly, ask the school if there are ways to promote the new team in the school.
3. Recruit players
Recruit players in both the school and within the community. You may want to recruit players by doing some of the following:
- Post flyers
- Make announcements
- Have a stand/booth at club night
- Spread the word about this new playing opportunity at community centers or churches
Once your child's team is established, parents can still play an important role in creating a great experience for the athletes.
1. Talk to the coach about how you can help
Create a parent leadership group. Talk to the coach first so that this is done as a partnership. Ask what the group can do to help.
2. Parent leadership organization
The parent leadership group can help organize many of the events that make a season special, such as:
- Organize social events (team dinners, etc.)
- Assist the coach by handling many of the off-field aspects (team photo, ordering jerseys, transportation, etc.)
- Organize "extra" events that can help build the team (a potluck after the first practice, a parent/player hat tournament)
- Engage in fundraising to help offset the costs of the team. Some examples may include hosting a charity auction, car wash, tournament, etc.
3. Become a USAU certified chaperone
At many youth events chaperones are required for teams with players under the age of 18. Become a USA Ultimate certified chaperone today!
4. Spread the word!
Encourage parents and spectators to come to games. Spread the word to the community, school principal, athletic director, neighbors, etc.!
With concepts such as Spirit of the Game and self-officiating, ultimate can seem like a very different experience for parents and spectators new to the sport.
Spirit of the Game™ (SOTG)
Ultimate is a sport which places emphasis on sportsmanship, respect and self-officiation. Parents behavior should be in line with this ethos.
- Parents should remain positive, cheering for their team, not against the other team.
- Parents should never comment or react to calls made by players on the field.
There are no referees in ultimate. The game is officiated by the players themselves. Because of this, it is very important that parents do not behave as they may at other sporting events. They should not be making calls from the sideline, nor should they be commenting and/or complaining about calls that have been made. These discussions should remain on the field with the players involved.
Because of the nature of self-officiation, parents may not know what call was made on the field. Familiarizing yourself with the rules (or at least a simple version of the rules) can make the spectator experience more enjoyable.
Coaching Healthy Habits Training
6-minute training from Healthy Kids Out of School to teach youth sports teams, coaches, players and parents these 3 healthy habits: Drink Right, Move More, and Snack Smart.