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The motto of Little Athletics is, Family, Fun, and Fitness. Little Athletics should not be seen as competing to win but rather for enjoyment and improving upon your previous best, little by little week by week. Many life-long friendships are borne out of Little Athletics for children and parents alike.

Little Athletics caters for children of every skill level, the only requirement is to do your best. The sport of athletics provides for a multitude of varying events, and almost everyone will find that one event that they are really suited to. Young children can become particularly despondent when they finish in the tail end of an event each week. But all we have to remember is to encourage them and remind them that almost all Olympians only compete in just one event. That one event that they are really good at. It would be a real shame for anyone to give up early and not find that one event. They might not run in first place in a sprint each week, but wouldn’t it be a real shame for them to give up and not find out that they can throw the heck out of a Javelin!

The Chelsea Little Athletics Centre is made up of three member Clubs, Panthers, Redbacks, and Roadrunners. Typically athletes will join the Club that is aligned with their residential address. Panthers – Edithvale, Redbacks – Aspendale (Aspendale Gardens), and Roadrunners – Chelsea (Chelsea Heights). Athletes however are free to choose their Club of choice.


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expand/collapse What ages are catered for in Little Athletics?

Little athletics is available for all boys and girls aged 5 to 15 years of age. Age groups are designated as U/6 and so on up to U/16. A child may register and start to compete once they turn 5 years of age at any time during the season, but not before this time. A child may start and are most welcome to start Little Athletics at any age between.


expand/collapse How are age groups determined?

The age of an athlete on the 1st October each year is used to determine the applicable age group. So for example if a child is 8 years of age on the 1st October then that child will compete in the U/9 age group for the forthcoming season. A copy of a birth certificate or other proof of age document should be made available when registering for the first time.


expand/collapse When is the competition held?

The Summer Track & Field Season typically runs from the start of October to the end of March. Competition is held on a Saturday morning with warm-up starting at 8.30am. Finish time is typically about 12.00 noon. There are also usually one or two twilight meetings held on a Friday from 5.30pm to 8.30pm. A Winter Cross Country Season also runs from April until September.


expand/collapse Where is the competition held

The regular weekly track and field competition is held at the same venue for each week of the season at Edithvale Reserve, Edithvale Road, Edithvale - Melway Map 93 C9. Competition is on a grass track which is very beneficial in preventing injuries particularly in younger athletes as opposed to a harder synthetic track.

Additionally various Centres around the State hold Open Day events where athletes may compete at the host Centre. Regional and State Championship competitions are also held for U/9 – U/15 age groups at various locations around the State.


expand/collapse How do I find out if competition is cancelled?

It is relatively rare when a competition is cancelled, usually due to bad weather. We will post a notice on the Home Page of the main website, post a message on Twitter, and send an sms to all registered members mobile phone numbers. This service is free of charge. Another reason to ensure that your information is complete and up to date.


expand/collapse Do I have to live in any specific area?

Whilst most members live locally (Aspendale/Aspendale Gardens, Edithvale & Chelsea/Chelsea Heights), there is no restriction based on the address of any prospective member.

Many of our members come from outside the local area including Cheltenham, Mentone, Parkdale, and Mordialloc to the north, Braeside, Bangholme, Waterways, Keysborough, Noble Park, Dingley to the west, and Patterson Lakes, Bonbeach, Carrum, Skye, Sandhurst, Seaford, and even Langwarrin and Frankston to the south.


expand/collapse How do I join?

There are typically two registration days held before the start of the Summer season at the end of September. You may register however at any time during the season if you wish. A reduced fee applies for athletes joining after the New Year break. You are invited to attend in person on a Saturday morning during competition (check the Season Calendar) or check out the Registration Page for more details.


expand/collapse How much does it cost to join?

Little Athletics is a comparatively cheap sport to join. For Season 2014/15 the fees are $135 for the first child with reductions for additional children. This caters for up to typically 18 weeks of competition and entry into the Chelsea Open Day and Medallion Day, which would typically cost around $30 separately. The Centre does not make any profit from the season fees as these go towards affiliation with Little Athletics Victoria (LAV) covering insurance and the like, as well as allowing for costs towards end of year awards. The Centre makes most of it’s proceeds from fundraising, sponsorship, and canteen/bbq facilities.


expand/collapse Where do my fees go?

Of the $135 season registration fee, the approximate break-up is as follows: LAV affiliation - $59, End of Year Award - $12, Chelsea Open Day and Medallion Day Entry - $30, Centre Funded Events (e.g. Mentone Open Relay/Southern Metro Region Relay/State Relay Championships) - $7. The Centre also pays lease fees on the building and grounds to the Kingston City Council of approximately $6 per athlete. As you can see the Centre effectively makes little profit from the registration fee, and in particular when the 2nd and subsequent child in a family is charged a discounted fee. A typical season entitles an athlete to 18 weeks of regular competition, plus the annual Open Day and Medallion Day, and an end of season award. We believe this is terrific value for money, and on top of all of this: remain active and healthy and make friends at the same time!


expand/collapse Can we out before joining?

At the start of each season (typically in the first month), “Bring A Friend” days are held where children can compete in events held on that day at no cost, and then decide if they wish to join.


expand/collapse Can we transfer our membership?

Athletes may transfer membership to another Centre. Whilst the LAV component of the registration fees does not need to be re-paid, the local Centre associated fees may need payment.


expand/collapse Can we cancel our membership?

All requests for cancellation of membership must be submitted in writing. The LAV portion of the fees is non-refundable under any circumstances. The remaining portion of the fees is only refundable in exceptional circumstances and will be considered by the next full Committee meeting.


expand/collapse Do girls compete against boys?

Generally no, genders are separated for reasons of competition. At times however boys and girls events may be run simultaneously for streamlining the day’s program, but will be judged separately.


expand/collapse What events are available?

The U/6 and U/7 age groups generally compete in 3 events each week and also learn skills required in a non-competitive fun “On-Track” program conducted each week. The U/8 age groups and above compete in 5 events each week in a 3 week rotating program. See the Weekly Program to find out what events each age group performs.


expand/collapse What are parents expected to do?

The foundation of Little Athletics was built upon involvement of the family. Unlike many other sports, parents do and are expected to take an active part in the running of the events. This provides for great interaction with and enjoyment for children who really appreciate Mum or Dad or even Grandparents being out there with them. Little Athletics should not be considered as “child minding”. You’ll find that it does not take much expertise to use a measuring tape or rake a sand-pit!


expand/collapse Are volunteers screened for Working With Children?

The Working With Children Act 2005 applies to Little Athletics. All volunteers in Executive Committee Positions at Club and Centre Level, and additionally those who are directly involved in a support role such as Coaches, Team Managers,  and On-Track Coordinators have been through the WWC process. Refer to the WWC Handout for further information.


expand/collapse Are awards presented to children?

Every athlete that competes, given a minimum number of competitions attended, receives an award at the end of the season.


expand/collapse Is a special uniform required?

There are uniforms available for sale from member Clubs in the clubrooms uniform shop, see the Uniforms page for details, however these are not compulsory and a coloured T-shirt will suffice. The most important part of the uniform though is ensuring that the LAV registration/sponsorship patch is attached. Comfortable running shoes and black shorts are also required. When athletes compete at Regional or State Championships a specific Chelsea uniform is required, these are available for hire or purchase.


expand/collapse Why is the Hurdles run over 81m rather than 80m?

Our most commonly asked unusual question. As permanently marked positions are not possible on a grass track, it was first proposed by VLAA (LAV) Life Governor and CLAC Life Member John Ellem, that the 80m Hurdles event should be modified to 81m to reduce set-up time when changing from the 60m Hurdles event. The answer is found in the difference between these two events. In every other respect, apart from the distance run and number of flights; with regard to the height of the hurdles, the run-in (distance from start to first hurdle - 12m), and the spacing of the hurdles (7m), these events have the same specification. The run-out (distance from last hurdle to finish line) differs from 13m for the 60m event to 12m for the 80m event. John cleverly surmised that if the 80m event was modified to an 81m event, the flights of hurdles could remain in the same position for the two events. Thus the only difference from the LAV standard event is an increased run-out and therefore the athlete's running pattern and technique would not have to modify in any way apart from an additional 1m distance after the last hurdle flight is cleared.


expand/collapse What is Open Day?

The Chelsea Open Day is a showcase event for the Centre. Athletes from Centres all across Victoria are invited to our Centre to compete against each other in a friendly atmosphere. Medals are awarded for place-getters in an event final. The day typically runs from 9.30am to about 3.30-4.00pm depending on entry numbers. Typically held on a Sunday during the season, the Chelsea Open Day has a reputation for being well organised due to the wonderful contribution made by all parents at the Centre, and is one of the longest running Open Days on the Little Athletics calendar. Check out the Season Calendar for details on the date the event is held.


expand/collapse What is Medallion Day?

Medallion Day is effectively the Centre Championship Day, and is the last weekly competition day of the Summer T&F season for the Centre. All athletes compete in five events on the day, usually the same group of events that make up the State Multi-Event program, and based on the tally of points earned for performance in each event the athlete is awarded a gold, silver, or bronze medal. Each competing athlete receives a medal. The other significant event on this day is the Centre AGM. At this meeting Centre Awards are presented and the Centre Committee is elected. Check the Season Calendar for details on the date the event is to be held.


expand/collapse I have more questions to ask?

Just contact one of our Committee members, they’re all friendly!




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