Athletics Activators

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Community Athletics Activator Resource 

With an increasing focus on leadership and volunteering, the Community Athletics Activator Resource offers ideal preparation for those wishing to support, officiate or coordinate an informal activity or short form competition event in their school, neighbourhood, community youth project or as part of their general “street games” activity. This resource might also prove useful for youth, community and club workers, young volunteers and helpers.

Resource aims

By using this Resource, Activators should:

  • Understand more about athletics as a sport that offers the foundation skills for a fit, healthy and enjoyable sporting life.
  • Understand the importance of fun, safe and enjoyable athletics activity for youngsters.
  • Feel more confident in setting up and coordinating short format athletics competitions such as Sportshall and QuadKids in your local school, community group or with friends.
  • Be able to engage in short format competitions such as Sportshall and QuadKids, coordinate your own local school or group events and use basic officiating skills.

What is an Activator?

An Athletics Activator is essentially anyone who is responsible for coordinating, organising or delivering informal athletic activity in a community setting. The Resource, whilst aimed at community sports projects, can also be applied in schools, colleges, or the formal athletic club setting. The Resource and aligned game cards could support delivery and add value to existing programmes and supplement school, college and club mainstream activity.

Activators who have attended an Activator workshops will not become licensed coaches. It is hoped that attendees of the workshop, or those simply picking up and using the resource, will be motivated to pursue their leadership and coaching education by following the formal UKA coaching and leadership education pathway. Visit to learn more about becoming a coach.

Why is this work important?

There are many challenges facing local community sports project organisers in facilitating traditional athletic activity. This Resource aims to counter some of these obstacles:

  • Limited access to traditional track and field facilities.
  • Limited access to formally qualified, licensed athletics coaches and leaders.
  • Traditional athletics equipment can prove costly and prevent delivery of the most technical events.
  • Overcoming a perception that athletics can only be delivered and enjoyed in the most traditional setting of an athletic club.

This work is all about getting more youngsters from across a broad range of communities enjoying the fundamental running, jumping and throwing basics. It is hoped that many of these participants would then be encouraged to join a formal athletic club.

Resource Contents

  • Activator Manual - containing useful advice and guidance on setting up basic athletic activity programmes as part of your community sports project to develop individual and team skills.
  • A set of Run, Jump, Throw activity / game cards to develop individual and team skills.
  • A Sportshall and QuadKids Competition Manual.

The resource includes the Sportshall and QuadKids Manuals, with a certificate of attendance at the back of each pack if you have received this resource as part of a formally delivered workshop. The Resource includes top tips for setting up basic informal athletics activity and short form competitions in your local project, particularly for those with limited experiences and for those working with minimal equipment and in restricted facilities.

This is NOT a licensed coaching workshop or resource. It is hoped that attendees of the workshop, or those simply picking up and using the Resource, will be motivated to pursue their leadership and coaching education by following the formal UKA coaching and leadership education pathway.

Activators can use the Resource to explore the basic principles of warm-ups, cool-downs, running, jumping, throwing and relays. This will support you in planning and developing activity, including set-up, top tips for managing groups and the use of equipment. Further contacts are provided in the participant resource pack which will help to develop the Activator's technical knowledge and skills beyond attendance on a workshop.

England Athletics will be offering some activator workshops or short courses in the coming months, prioritising the national Street Games community project network across England. Details of these workshops will be relayed in due course.

How can my project access a copy of the Activators' Resource?

England Athletics has a limited stock of the Activators' Resource that we are using to promote activity through local StreetGames projects. However, we plan to make the resource available to broader partner organisations in the coming months. Further details will become available in the near future.

Where from here?

A series of pilot Activator workshops are being planned across England to take effect from May onwards. These workshops will be delivered through priority StreetGames projects. England Athletics will then be refining the workshop for potentially a wider roll out through community sports projects.

If your local community StreetGames project is interested in hosting a pilot Activators' workshop, or in obtaining a copy of the Activators' Resource, then please contact activators [at] englandathletics [dot] org to register interest.

Athletics, StreetGames and community sports projects - a perfect match!

Athletics in its purest form is easy to deliver. The Activators' Resource introduces the rudiments of running, jumping and throwing. The parallels between athletics and the aims of StreetGames are stark.

  • Local provision – on your doorstep!
  • Basic activities – that are easy to deliver!
  • The Sportshall and QuadKids formats provide relevant, easy and flexible activity.
  • Sessions are activity-focused, rather than coaching-focused, encouraging Activators to visit to learn more about becoming a coach.
  • Activators and group members are mainly local to the community.
  • ‘Jumpers for goalposts’ – it should be that simple! How about estate leagues and events?
  • Links with local clubs can support the set up of formal coaching and development activities, providing an exit route for talented youngsters.

Licensing, insurance and CRB

The Community Athletics Activators’ Resource and workshop does not form part of any UKA coaching or leaders’ coaching licence qualification. Participants who attend or complete any future Activators' workshop will not automatically become UKA licensed coaches unless they have undertaken a formal coaching qualification in addition. Attendance at the course will not automatically require participants to complete a CRB check and will not provide the participant with insurance to deliver the programme or activity.

It is crucial that local project organisers make their own arrangements to ensure that their sporting activities are covered by appropriate accident and public liability insurance. Furthermore, project organisers must ensure that any volunteers, helpers or activators who work with young athletes have undertaken a CRB check and are registered with the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) as required or they may be subject to a fine of up to £5000 under the ISA regulations.

Further information on CRB and ISA requirements and safeguarding and protecting children can be obtained by visiting or by contacting them direct or by visiting UKA's welfare page. Further information on coach licensing and CRB specifically for UKA accredited athletics coaches can be obtained by visiting

Examples of Resource Pages


Examples of Game Cards

Triple Skill

Relay Running activity

Aim: For athletes to perform a hop, step and jump in sequence.

Lead the Pack

Running activity

Aim: For athletes to decide their “lead leg” when sprinting over hurdles, but to practise both “lead legs”.

Leap the Gap

Jumping activity

Aim: For athletes to jump further.

Jump for Height

Jumping activity

Aim: For athletes to jump for height from one foot, landing on two feet.

Way to Throw

Throwing activity

Aim: For athletes to perform an overhead pulling throw.

Power the Ball

Throwing activity

Aim: For athletes to perform an overhead heaving throw, forwards and backwards.