Risk Management for Sports Facilities

Risk Management for Sports Facilities

You're responsible for every single person who walks through your door, and their safety should be your number one priority. Plainly stated, we live in a risky world. Even with every precaution taken, we can't prevent 100% percent of incidents from happening, but we can certainly try to identify risks before something horrible happens.

For sports facilities, we widely accept that we can predict, accept, and even want a certain amount of risk management in many activities. However, we don't accept behaviour that places others in a situation of unreasonable risk or danger. Unfortunately, this can become common place in sports facilities if not curbed right away. The reality is that many injuries that occur in sports facilities are preventable with a bit of proper planning and education.

At the front lines of risk management, you are ultimately responsible for promoting safe practices in line with regional occupational health and safety standards at your facility. We all know it's better to be over-prepared than have a harmful incident take place, knowing you could have done something to prevent it.


Risk management for sports facilities

Let's explore a risk management plan for sports facilities. For the most part, we assess risks involving influencing human behavior to stop participating in risky activities. This is the best area to focus because here is where sports facilities can practice the most control in managing risks they are liable for, should anything go wrong.

The comprehensive guide 

Now that we've talked about an introduction to risk management for sports facilities, let's talk more about practical steps you can take in assessing risk. 

  1. Identify potential risks in your facility, and ask yourself: 'what are the possible things that can go wrong?
  2. Measure how likely it is that something could go wrong with this risk, as well as measuring what the consequences could be of a risk. 
  3. Control the risk to keep the chances of something going wrong low. 

What is risk management?

In common use, we define a risk management plan as overseeing anything with a chance of injury, damage or loss. In our world, many things carry the low chance of risk, but are necessary for everyday life. But for a sport facility, this can include:

  1. any chance of injury to facility members
  2. damage to property which you may be responsible for,
  3. or loss to the facility, organization, directors, volunteers, members, or to a third party.

The key components of risk management 

In considering risk management, what are the key components your organization needs to be aware of?

  1. Physical injury: This accounts for any risk of a participant being seriously hurt or injured in your facility.
  2. Wrongful actions: This accounts for the risk of somebody experiencing a loss of rights or opportunities, therefore which there is a legal remedy and the sport facility is responsible.
  3. Property loss or damage: This accounts for risk of property owned/controlled by your sports facility, or for which you are responsible, will be stolen or damaged and ultimately replaced.

Why is risk management crucial for sports facilities

Risks that are inherent in a sport activity rarely give rise to a claim of negligence. However, many risks are not inherent in the sport and pose an unreasonable risk of danger, that arise out of a deliberate disregard for the rules of the game and that can otherwise be foreseen may be the basis of negligence, and are precisely the risks that need to be managed.  

What risk management program is right for your facility? 

Having briefly described the responsibilities the sport organization has towards its members, and specifically the responsibility to provide a safe environment, the next question is “how do I behave responsibly?” with regard to a risk management plan.

The answer lies is risk management. This section describes the risk management process and shows how to apply it within a sport organization or sport facility.


Creating a custom sports risk management program 

All processes should be thoroughly laid out so that your staff doesn't have to fill in any gaps when implementing risk management safety procedures. Equally important, these procedures and protocols need to be readily available for all staff so that every member of your team knows exactly what is expected of them each time they come to work.

  1. Retain: If the risk is minor, inherent in the sport activity, or provides minor consequences that the facility manager can accept, nothing needs to be done.
  2. Reduce: If the risk is significant enough to drive the manager to do something, an option to reduce the likelihood of events occurring can happen through careful planning and organizing, preparing staff and volunteers, inspecting equipment, and so on.
  3. Transfer: If the risk is significant enough that your sports facility doesn’t want to take it on, this risk can be transferred to others using waivers.
  4. Avoid: If the risk is so high and the consequence is so severe, this type of risk can be avoided altogether for the better interest of safety for employees and members. 

Invest in industry-leading sports facility management software

When it comes to risk management, Xplor Recreation can help. Take advantage of Xplor Recreation's easy-to-use cloud-based software to create, save, print, upload, and manage documents for your organization securely in the cloud! What else can you do with Xplor Recreation's document storage system?

  1. Customize labels and certificates 
  2. Merge HTML, MS Word document support
  3. Send to sign for contracts
  4. Upload PDFs and images
  5. Organize and distribute tax receipts
  6. Securely store digital signatures

Why you need Xplor Recreation

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