Building The Game

Floorball doesn’t have to have a specifically-built gym or court design. The beauty of the game is that it can be placed anywhere, and run with multiple games at the same time. In many communities there are a number of recreation facilities available to young athletes. This offers an opportunity for the game of the floorball exist.

They can range from private organization, YMCA’s, and parks and recreation.  One of the unifying aspect of those facilities is that they’re in a constant state of evolving to meet the needs of the consumer.  In addition they’re also constantly trying to attract new members and user groups in order to maximize their resources, and increase their bottom line.  In general, facilities that pigeon hole themselves into one area have a much more difficult time with this.  As a facility manager myself I thoroughly enjoy going to new facilities, and talking with other managers about how they operate.  It should be as no surprise that just about everyone is looking to maximize their space throughout the year.  Floorball is certainly a worth avenue to implement in facilities looking to attract or retain participants.

When I talk to people about floorball I get a number of responses.  Some of them are more dismissive of the sport as not being hockey, or too similar to floor hockey that they’re not interest.  Others feel it’s too physical, but they’re really more concerned about the sticks and players being hit.  Lastly, some people don’t feel comfortable starting a program that they don’t know much about.  It’s important to do an assessment for each program and understand how a floorball program could be implemented into their facility and current programs.  How much equipment is needed? What equipment can be used that’s already owned?  What about staff training?  These are valid questions to ask.

As a manager of a University recreation center I go through this process for every program I implement whether it’s an equipment purchase, wellness class, outdoor recreation trip, or intramural sport.  While there’s always programs that are an immediate hit, it can take some time for things to catch on.  A great way to gauge interest is doing a needs survey to find out what your customers or patrons want to see. If you’re a facility that doesn’t offer a stick sport inquire if people want or are interested in that.   If it’s a youth program, add it to your sports offering.  I’ve yet to meet a group of kids that didn’t at least engage in floorball when offered a stick.

There’s always a nature of risk involved when starting a new program from the monetary, and time invested to get something off the ground. The goal is to make calculated risks that will hopefully be beneficial in the end.  Find what works with your facility, and adapt it as needed to meet your space constraints.  As you evaluate the needs of your customers I hope you’ll consider floorball.

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