We look up to our champions and we remember and respect the sporting heroes of yesterday – a great many of whom are revered for their deeds on the athletic field. Winning, of course, is a vital part of that tradition – but not as important as the spirit of Australian sport. All that spirit stems from our commitment to fair play. LAQ (Little Athletics Queensland) has published the following code of behaviour which Gold Coast Little Athletics endorses.
- Be a good sport. Respect all good performances whether from your Centre or the opponents and shake hands with and thank the opposing athletes and officials after the event – win, lose or draw.
- Participate for your own enjoyment and benefit.
- Always respect the official’s decision.
- Never become involved in acts of foul play.
- Honour both the spirit and intention of the competition rules and live up to the highest ideals of ethics and sportsmanship. Avoid gamesmanship and respect the traditions of the sport.
- Never engage in disrespectful conduct of any sort including profanity, sledging, obscene gestures, offensive remarks, trash-talking, taunting or other actions that are demeaning to other athletes, officials or supporters.
- Care for and respect the facilities and equipment made available to you during training and competition.
- Safeguard your health. Don’t use any illegal or unhealthy substances.
- Recognise that officials and coaches are volunteers who give up their time to provide their services. Treat them with the utmost respect.
- Do not bet or otherwise financially speculate, directly or indirectly, on the outcome or any other aspect of a Little Athletics or Athletics event or competition in which you are involved.
- Condemn all violent or illegal acts, whether they are by athletes, coaches, officials, parents or spectators.
- Respect the official’s decisions. Don’t complain or argue about actions or decisions during or after an event.
- Do not engage in unsportsmanlike language, harassment or aggressive behaviour.
- Encourage athletes to play by the rules and to respect opposing athletes and officials.
- Never ridicule or scorn an athlete for making a mistake, respect their efforts.
- Understand that sport is part of a total life experience, and the benefits of involvement go far beyond the final placing of an event.
- Participate in positive cheering that encourages the athletes in the Centre you are supporting. Don’t engage in any cheering that taunts or intimidates opponents, their fans or officials.
- Remember that children participate in Little Athletics for their own enjoyment, not yours!
- At all times follow the directions of the Competition Manager and/or other competition day officials.
- Never arrive at a Little Athletics competition under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Never bring alcohol or drugs to a Little Athletics competition or training
- Actively discourage foul play and/or unsportsmanlike behaviour by athletes.
- Seek to maximise the participation and enjoyment of all athletes regardless of ability; avoid the tendency to over-use a talented athlete; treat all athletes as equals, regardless of their talent.
- Show concern and caution towards all sick and injured athletes. Follow the advice of a physician and/or sports trainer to the letter when determining when an injured athlete is ready to recommence training or competition.
- Teach athletes that an honest effort and competing to the best of their ability is as important as victory.
- Maintain a thorough knowledge of the rules of competition and keep abreast of current coaching methods. Maintain or improve your current accreditation level.
- Always consider the health, safety and welfare of the athletes.
- Teach young athletes to realise that there is a big gap between their ability and the professional athlete. Do not coach them as if they are professionals.
- Ensure that your coaching reflects the level of the competition being involved with and don’t be a ‘winner at all costs’ coach.
- As coach, conduct yourself at all times, and in all situations, in a manner that shows leadership, respect for the sport of Athletics and respect for all those that are involved in the sport – athletes, officials, spectators, parents and the media
- Be impartial! Also, be consistent, objective and courteous.
- Place the safety and welfare of the athletes above all else. Be alert to minimise dangerous physical play, fair or foul, especially during competition days.
- Accept responsibility for all actions taken.
- Avoid any form of verbal conflict with coaches, team officials, parents and spectators during competition.
- Avoid any situation which may lead to a conflict of interest, both on and off the field.
- Condemn all and every instance of unsportsmanlike, foul or unfair play.
- Set a good example by the way you dress, speak and act towards athletes, coaches, officials, parents and spectators.
- Show concern and caution towards sick and injured athletes.
- Officiate to the age and/or experience of the athletes.
Breaching The Code of Behaviour
The code of behaviour as set down is to be followed by all athletes. Any breaches of this code will be dealt with in the following manner. In the first instance, the Centre Manager/Liaison Officer will speak with the offending athlete’s entire age group. In the second instance, the athlete themselves will be spoken to by the Centre Manager/Liaison Officer and in the third instance, the Centre Manager/Liaison Officer will speak to the athlete along with the athlete’s parents and the athlete will be excluded from the event they are currently participating in. Should a further breach occur the athlete will be excluded from the night’s competition.