Codes of Conduct

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Last updated 17 May 2015


Codes of conduct for Blackheath & Bromley Harriers AC


These codes are based on the templates provided by England Athletics and have been updated to reflect the latest guidance being issued. If you have any questions relating to the codes please refer to Paul Byfield -

There are 5 codes:




As a responsible athlete you will:


·       treat others with the same respect and fairness that you wish to receive

·       uphold the same values off the field as you do when you engaged in athletics

·       anticipate your own needs, be organised and on time

·       be appreciative towards those who help you participate in athletics whether it be family, coaches, team managers, team mates or officials

·       inform your coach of any other coaching you are receiving

·       show patience with and respect differences in gender, ability, culture, race, ethnicity and religious beliefs between yourself and others

·       act with dignity at all times

·       not respond if someone seeks private information, unrelated to athletics e.g. home life

·       use safe transport or travel arrangements

·       not use alcohol, cigarettes or illegal and performance enhancing drugs.  Good behaviour is expected at all times when travelling by coach, staying in hotels or at the competition venue.  Any damage caused, other than by accident, by club members will have to be paid for by them

·       never engage in any illegal or irresponsible behaviour.  Team Managers may exclude those club members whose behaviour breaches the code of conduct from participating in events.  Under no circumstances are you to leave the athletics stadium unless accompanied by a Team Manager or other approved adult chaperone, and then only after consulting your Team Manager

·       valuable items should not be taken to training venues or on trips and no responsibility can be taken by the Club for loss of personal property

·       challenge anyone whose behaviour falls below the expected standards of Blackheath & Bromley Harriers AC

·       speak out immediately if anything makes you concerned or uncomfortable (telling your parents/carers and/or with Club Welfare Officer) or if you suspect a club mate has suffered from misconduct by someone else

·       make yourself aware of, and observe, the Code of Conduct laid down by those responsible for the safe operation of your training venue


Whilst at the track:

·       No warming up or jogging on the inside lane

·       No cheering from inside of the track because it is seen as coaching.

·       No shouting the times for another athlete unless you do it for all athletes in the race.

·       No walking in front of the time keepers at the finish.

·       No running along to encourage another athlete, again this is seen as coaching.


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As a responsible coach you will:


·       respect the rights, dignity and worth of every athlete and treat everyone equally, regardless of background or ability

·       place the welfare and safety of the athletes above the development of performance

·       develop appropriate working relationships with athletes (especially under 18s) based on mutual trust and respect

·       not exert undue influence to obtain personal benefit or reward

·       encourage and guide athletes to accept and take responsibility for their own behaviour and performance and give them as much autonomy as possible

·       never do something for an athlete that they can do for themselves (in the case of some disabled athletes or vulnerable adults tasks of a personal nature may be requested or necessary.  In such cases, the full understanding and consent of the parent or carer should be sought and the individual’s autonomy and dignity should be respected)

·       avoid critical language or actions, such as sarcasm, that undermines an athlete’s self-esteem

·       not spend time alone with a young athlete unless in clear view of others

·       avoid taking a young athlete alone in your car

·       never invite a young athlete alone to your home

·       never engage in physical or sexually provocative games, including horseplay, or share a bedroom with a child

·       always explain why and ask for consent before touching an athlete

·       work in same-sex pairs when supervising changing areas

·       ensure that parents/carers know about and have approved in advance if taking a young athlete away from the usual training venue

·       respect the right of young athletes to an independent life outside athletics

·       make sure you are appropriately qualified for activities you coach and update your licence and education as and when required by UK Athletics

·       adopt safe training regimes appropriate to the age, stage of development and capacity of the athlete

·       at the outset, clarify with athletes (and where appropriate their parents or carers) exactly what is expected of them and what performers are entitled to expect from you

·       never try to recruit, either overtly or covertly, athletes who are receiving coaching

·       co-operate fully with other colleagues (e.g. other coaches, officials, team managers, sport scientists, doctors, physiotherapists, governing body staff) in the best interest of the athlete

·       consistently promote positive aspects of the sport (e.g. fair play) and never condone rule violations or the use of prohibited or age-inappropriate substances

·       strictly maintain a clear boundary between friendship and intimacy with athletes

·       challenge inappropriate behaviour or language by others

·       report any accidental injury, distress or misunderstanding or misinterpretation (including if a child appears to have been sexually aroused by your actions).  A brief written report of such incidents should be submitted to the club’s Welfare Officer as soon as possible and parents/carers notified (see example Incident Report Form)

·       report any suspected misconduct by other coaches or athletic personnel to the Welfare Officer

·       consistently display high standards of behaviour or appearance


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As a responsible contractor, employee, official, volunteer or track manager you will :


·       ensure that governing body risk assessment procedures are complied with

·       put the safety of the athletes first

·       offer an encouraging and positive environment

·       use appropriate language and behaviour

·       show integrity and professionalism in your dealing with athletes and other adults

·       give equal treatment and respect to all

·       comply with the above whenever in the vicinity of athletics events, whether perfuming related tasks or not


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As a responsible parent/carer you will :


·       check out the people coaching or managing your child

·       take an active interest in your child’s participation

·       attend training and competition whenever possible

·       ensure that your child does not take unnecessary valuable items to training or competition

·       know exactly where your child will be at all times and who they are with

·       return a written consent form to the Club, including all contact details, next of kin details, health and medical requirements (see Consent Form).  You may be requested to update the information, particularly before your child goes to an “away” fixture

·       inform your child’s coach of any allergy, illness or disability that needs to be taken into consideration for athletic performance

·       provide any necessary medication that your child needs for the duration of any trips

·       never make assumptions about your child’s safety



Whilst at the track: 

·       No cheering from the inside of the track because this is interpreted as coaching.

·       Do not walk across the infield

·       Do not watch your child’s event from the infield, please stay on the outside of the track

·       No shouting out the times for your child unless you do it for all the athletes in the race.

·       Do not walk in front of the time keepers at the finish.

·       Do not run along with your child, again this is seen as coaching.


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As a responsible team manager/chaperone you will :


·       act in loco parentis for any athletes below the age of 18 at events

·       look after young athletes’ personal safety at event venues

·       provide the appropriate ratio of staff for the age and ability of the athletes e.g. a minimum of one adult member of staff for every ten children who may be travelling away from the home venue

·       provide staff of the same sex as the athletes i.e. avoid cross-sex chaperoning

·       guarantee that all volunteers for an athletics team have been through the appointments process, including self-declaration and Subject Access police check

·       collect written evidence that all staff and volunteers with responsibility for young athletes from your team have completed appropriate child protection training

·       comply with any local Duty of Care and/or Child Protection policies and procedures that might be in place e.g. Local Authority or school procedures that cover particular venues or athlete groups

·       notify all parents/carers of athletes under 18 of the times and venues of any competitions and of appropriate contact telephone numbers

·       ensure that written, informed consent has been collected from all participants’ parents/carers in advance of a competition including next of kin and contact details, and medical conditions such as allergies, and ensure that relevant medication is supplied for the child for the duration of the event

·       liaise with young athletes’ parents/carers if they become involved in an accident or a serious breach of safety or discipline while under your care



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