Little Athletics FAQ - Northern Districts Athletics Club
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Little Athletics FAQ

Welcome to the Little Athletics Q&A. For new families considering Little Athletics it can be a little daunting at first – all the events, training, terminology that might be a bit unfamiliar! Hopefully by having a scan through this FAQ you’ll find answers to some of the questions you might have.

 

If you still have questions that haven’t been answered or you would like some more clarification please get in touch by emailing president@jets.org.au

 

We’d love to hear from you!

Who can join?

 

Little Athletics is for boys and girls aged 3-17 years old. Children of all abilities are welcome.

 

Ages 3-4:
Children must have turned 3 before they can participate and a parent/guardian is required to stay with their child. This age group participates in a modified program called Tiny Tots. Little Athletics stands for Family, Fun and Fitness – and our Tiny Tots most definitely have lots of FUN!

Ages 5-17:
All children in this age group are welcome to join in. Little Athletics puts a strong emphasis on “Being Your Best”. It encourages healthy lifestyle through family and community involvement in athletic activities. This means that all are welcome regardless of fitness level or ability. So why not come along and have a go!

When & where do you meet?

 

The Summer Season runs from September – March.

We mostly meet at Rundle Reserve on Saturday mornings at 8:45am however there are a few exceptions. Occasionally we will visit another club’s grounds (not too far away) for a combined event. These happen either on a Saturday or Sunday and start times in the morning may vary. There are a couple of twilight meets each season on Friday evening at 6pm where we participate under lights. There are also a few state combined events at the SA Athletics Stadium at Mile End. We break over the Christmas period and recommence mid-January.

 

You can find more information at the Calendar page.

 

Training is an option for children to improve their skills. It will be held on Monday and Tuesday evenings from 5.15pm until 6.15pm.  All registered athletes are welcome to attend and this will commence on Monday 15th October 2018.  Monday training sessions will be for throws only.  Tuesday training sessions will be for sprints, distance and jumps.

 

You can find more information at the Training page.

 

The Winter Season runs from May – July.

The Winter season is made up of Cross Country meets hosted by the Little Athletic clubs of SA. The meets are mainly held on Sunday with a few exceptions around public holidays. This series culminates with the Little Athletics Cross Country Championships in July. In order to qualify for the Championships athletes must compete in 3 Cross Country meets. Athletes that compete in any 4 Cross Country meets will qualify for a participation medal presented at the start of the next season. Northern Districts Athletics Club has hosted a Cross Country meet at Carisbrooke Reserve for many years and is a great way to get involved and help out!

How much does it cost and where do the funds go?

 

Fees for Little Athletics are made up of two components.

 

Part of the fee goes to the Little Athletics Association. This covers expenses such as registration, insurance, athletes’ bibs (to be sewn to their uniform for the season), online record keeping and events held at the SA Athletics Stadium. The remaining portion covers equipment, ground maintenance and other club costs.

 

You can find the fees for the 2018-19 Summer Season on the Fees page (link will open in a new tab).

 

There are some other costs associated with attending Little Athletics. After attending two come & try sessions athletes are expected to wear the club uniform. No need to go all out! – just a NDAC top and some plain blue shorts will get you going.

 

All training, home meets and visits to other clubs are included in club fees. There are some inter-club meets at the SA Athletics Stadium which generally cost an additional $10 per athlete, if you choose to attend. During school holidays Little Athletics sometimes run training workshops that may have an additional cost. During the “off season”/Winter Season there are around 10 or so Cross Country meets around South Australia. Running in a Cross Country meet will cost $2 per athlete which will go to the hosting club.

Can we Come & Try?

 

Yes! We’d love you to!

 

You’re more than welcome to come and participate at any “home meets” on our calendar. New athletes are offered 2 “Come & Try” meets at a cost of $5 per athlete (to cover insurance costs) which will be deducted from your season registration if you choose to continue. You’re welcome to visit any time during the year, but the first meets September and October are an ideal time to check out Little Athletics.

 

Please make sure your little athlete visits with suitable shoes for running, comfortable clothes/hat and a drink bottle of water.

 

Before attending Little Athletics please visit the SA Little Athletics Member Portal. Here you will be able to create a profile with your child or children’s information and register for Come & Try Sessions.

What happens at Saturday meets?

 

The majority of Little Athletics meets start at 8:45am Saturday at Rundle Reserve. The athletes (and their parents) gather in their groups based on the athlete’s age and gender. This happens along the side of the oval near the clubhouse. Everyone marks themselves off in the age group’s folder on arrival. After a few short notices from the President the Little Athletes will go for a short jog and some warm-ups lead by our Senior Captains.

 

After the warm up it’s onto the events! Each age group will have a selection of events according to the following:

3 and 4 year olds – we run a program for our “Tiny Tots” which has been put together by our association.  This is a fun program which aims to help children with their co-ordination by playing skill based games to prepare them for upcoming events as they get older.
Under 6 to Under 8 athletes compete in 5 events
Under 9 to Under 14 athletes compete in 6 events
Under 15 to Under 17 athletes can compete in a minimum of 3/maximum of 6 events of their choice

They will be a combination of track and field events and are selected from a rotating roster of events so that athletes get to try a variety of events. The age group, with the help of parents, move around the facility and participate in the events listed in the folder in the order noted. At some events there may be a short wait before it becomes available. We ask that the group stays in the immediate area as to not lose their place in the queue. However, please be mindful of other athletes who are competing in their events. As the event is happening, or at it’s conclusion results are noted in the folder and then it’s on to the next event.

 

The list of events in the folder will have the distances that must be run for the age group. For more specific information regarding the specifications for the events please check the Standard Events page.

 

At the conclusion of the events for each age group, slips will be handed out for the Little Athletes to keep. It will list the times and distances they achieved for each event. These times will also be loaded onto the athlete’s Results HQ private webpage for future reference.

 

When age groups are finished it’s a great time to catch up with other parents at the clubhouse and maybe treat yourself to a sausage at the BBQ.

 

Twilight meets run in the same way. Our running track lights will be switched on to improve visibility.

 

Away events are run in a similar fashion, however there may be a few differences between clubs. Some extra patience will be required due to the larger attendance on these days. However, they’re always a fantastic chance to get to know others in the athletics community and a great chance to represent your club!

How can I get involved?

 

Northern Districts Athletics Club is run by the parents! Everyone is expected to lend a hand to keep things running. It’s also important to note that Little Athletes must be supervised by an adult while participating.

 

Chaperones

Each week one parent in each age/gender group will volunteer to be a chaperone. Chaperones will grab the appropriate hi-vis vest for the group and a basket and age group folder. The folder will contain a sheet for recording each athlete’s performance and shows the order in which events are to be completed. The chaperone is responsible for recording each athlete’s performance, ensuring that the group follows the weekly program. The chaperone will liaise with the starters for each running event. During the morning children will put their drink bottles into the basket and should be encouraged to drink between events.

 

Chaperones are not responsible for the entire running of the age group. Parents should jump in and help run events as required – carry the drinks, rake the long jump pit, fetch the shot put. Many hands make light work!