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How to Get Involved in Sport Without Actually Playing




For lovers of sport, it is not always possible to take part. A range of factors may stop you from being able to play while the love for the game remains. In these cases, looking at other roles within the discipline can be just as rewarding. Below, we look at a few ways to get involved in sports without playing.

Become an Official

It may not be as glamorous as occupying that centre-forward role you always dreamed about, but officials are essential in all sports. They hold together the foundation of the game. They may be umpires in cricket, referees in football, or even named a judge. Yet they’re all linked by the universal truth that to be the best at what they do, fairness and a sound knowledge of the most obscure rules are vital.

A good official also needs a strong head. They may face harsh criticism, both on and off the field. Being able to make informed, snap decisions is something that comes naturally to everyone and this is why great officials quickly rise to the top. You just need to find the sport you love, study its rules and then see how you can take the exams to become on-site staff.

Sponsorship and Ownership

If you are financially able to do so, then another option is sponsorship. You may have a business that could assist in funding a local club, team or individual. The payoff is that you get advertising for your business and very often get perks such as free seats and exclusive insights into the team.

In some cases, backing does not even have to be financial. A fantastic example was Great Britain’s Olympic weightlifting hopeful Rebekah Tiler, who was sponsored by her local butcher with protein-filled hampers. This ended up giving a local business national and international press.


Certain sports let you take this one step further, and own a piece of the company or athlete. Horse racing is a great example of this, where syndicates often put money together to buy racehorses. While racehorse ownership was once for the select few, some companies have made the process much more accessible to all with low entry fees. This allows you to buy into a horse, which they keep you up to date on via a range of media and content.


Small clubs and teams all over the country need help to function. They may need trainers to coach their youth teams, or may just need people to organise fundraising events and help with the day-to-day running of the company.

Some of these minor roles may even be able to offer a small wage. Stewards at events almost always get paid and get to see the events for free. You may have to go on a small course or undertake training, but after this, you will be an essential part of the inner workings of events and match days.

Of course, if you don’t find a local club related to your sport or niche then the option exists to set up your own. You may find the area lacks a female youth la crosse club or a disabled basketball league. This is a prime opportunity to get involved, but will also be a large undertaking you should not begin lightly.


Sport is for everyone and should transcend geography and socio-economic boundaries. If spectating is not enough, then one of these tactics should help you feel more involved and forge positive links in your local community.

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