As more youth discover and play floorball they are immediately taken to its fast pace and exciting play.
Floorball is a sport that can be played and enjoyed by anyone of any age, ability, or gender. It’s
- easy to learn
- easy to play
- engaging and inclusive
Floorball is quickly getting more and more attention from schools boards, hockey organizations and recreation centres.
As this international sports continues to gain momentum, the challenge was on how to best introduce, grow and sustain this relatively new, emerging sport into communities across North America.
THE COMMUNITY SPORT LANDSCAPE
Essentially there are three types of community sport models.
The following is a chart that describes the attributes of each and how they relate to one another:
for more details click HERE
THE CURRENT FLOORBALL MODEL
Floorball, like many new sports, has traditionally been delivered through small Private Independent DIY (Do It Yourself) floorball “clubs”.
The DIY clubs often start out with someone having discovered the sport and a new found desire to start one in their community.
Historically however DIY Floorball Clubs run into many hurtles, not only because the sport is unknown, but for other reasons too :
- After an initial momentum player no shows and drop offs start to happen
- Solo operator logs many personal hours chasing existing players, collecting money, finding qualified coaches and referees
- Regularly recruit of players becomes difficult
- There is little of any support network to draw insights, share ideas or help out
- Marketing the club is cost prohibitive and ineffective
- Clubs operate in a silo and are fragment from clubs and so do not share valuable advice and experience
- Workload and stress significantly increase on the owner to maintain the club
- Recruitment and training programs are not up to date, IF they exist at all
- Programs to develop players, referees, coaches and volunteers do not exist
- Little if any documentation around codes of conducts, discipline procedures, operation policies, player protection, inclusivity policies, insurance coverage
- Standards and quality assurance practices have not been established to ensure a consistent safe and healthy environment of play
- Manual registrations and payment collections add to frustrations and ability to cover expenses
- There is seldom any software solution for communications, marketing campaigns, bookkeeping and customer service
- Efforts to reach outside the club into the community with a variety of floorball activities are lagging
- May not offer youth programs or age appropriate divisions
- Club matters consume personal time
- Owners often reconsider their time/ interests (or worse burn out)
- Interest wanes over time and the club often becomes stale (and may even fold)
- Revenues barely cover expenses and little is available for marketing and growth
To create a hybrid model that would draw upon the framework of existing community sports models and successfully sustain growth for a new sport while mitigating the risks and hurdles to operators (like those common to DIY Floorball Clubs).
From this 3 CHALLENGES arose:
- can a business concept be created for the sport of floorball that can integrate in the current landscape of sport organization?
(The Floorball “Business”)
- is there room for the non traditional sport of floorball to play among the many well recognized and more popular sports in a community?
- is the sport of floorball engaging and exciting enough for youth to learn and play?
In order to introduce a new type of sport such as floorball, in a community already populated with more commonly known sports, it required an innovative sports model that would:
- be a hybrid of the best of all other community sports
- provide a turnkey business system
- allow operators to become owners
- continuously train and give ongoing support
- provide innovative tools and resources
- offer ‘how to’ manuals and videos
- have proven marketing programs
- offer recruitment advice & techniques
- have strong lasting vision and values
- follow industry best practices and policies
- have influential networks to connect
- have established supply chains
- offer expertise advice for business development
“Floorball is a perfect cross training activity for hockey players because it hones the skills and endurance needed to excel on the ice. Other benefits are that it’s a safe, easy to learn, and a ton of fun!”Joe DiPenta