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Team/Program Financing





Team or program expenses can include rink fees, coaching, uniforms, and administrative.  Rink costs are often the largest; ideally you agree with the rink owner that each skater can pay a set amount per practice, so this will not be a team expense.


Coaching fees vary widely. Many coaches do not charge.


Uniforms are not necessary, particularly for a new team.  Uniforms typically cost between $50 and $100, and are often paid for by each skater.


Administrative fees can be under $100 per year.


Most team income typically comes from skaters, via periodic payments and/or per-practice payments.  Some teams have a family cap so families with several skaters pay little more than smaller families.


But external financing is important for a quality program, and so families who are enthusiastic but not wealthy can participate.


The best sources of external financing are adult skaters and parents of younger skaters.  Sometimes they will personally finance specific needs, if these needs are explained.  Sometimes they will carry the message of need to their employer, or to local businesses of which they are customers.


Local businesses, ones where skaters and their families shop, are another good possibility for contributions. Offer them publicity for their business at team activities, perhaps by handing out fliers or coupons. Putting the business name on uniforms isn't necessarily good; check USARS regulations regarding names on uniforms used for USARS events.


Ideally, before soliciting a business which team families don't already have a close relationship with, your team will already be well known in the community.  So always be marketing, even when you aren't seeking immediate financing.  Send press releases (and do whatever is needed to get them published), appear in local parades and civic events, and try to be involved in school programs. This marketing will pay off, both in cash flow, and in bringing in new skaters who will bring money.


A way to ease into sponsorship by businesses is to solicit products and coupons, and to award these at competitive meets or parties.  Awarding can be done based on performance or random drawing; the goals are to publicize the businesses, and to make attendees feel good because of carrying something away.   Businesses are often quite willing to give away one-of-a-kind products, which will be valued by recipients.  Coupons, such as those offering major discounts on products, often bring new customers into a business, so are a win-win situation.