Alert Level 1 Resources
Congratulations, tennis community! From 11.59pm 8 June, NZ moved to Alert Level 1. Level 1 is as close to business as usual as we have known since the middle of March 2020.
To keep everyone safe, for coaches, clubs, tennis centres and businesses these golden rules will apply:
1. Display the following signage prominently on your courts, club rooms, entrances, noticeboards:
- Good hygiene practices
- QR code tracer poster. We recommend you use the Ministry of Health NZ Covid Tracer QR code poster – instructions to get a poster for your club can be found here. Use R911288 for the LocationBIC code in the template spreadsheet.
2. Keep things clean or closed. Ensure a regular cleaning schedule is in place for shared areas such as changing rooms, toilets, clubrooms, bar tables, door handles.
3. Manage larger events well – for example, at club fundraisers and prizegivings ensure all attendees register to attend (or, as organizer, keep a good register) especially if you can’t guarantee that people will have checked in using the QR code tracer displayed at your venue.
Tips for clubs & coaches during and emerging from COVID-19
Whilst this is an extremely unusual time for most of the world, there are things that we must be mindful of that are positive, and that we can control. Sport is something that survives everything – wars, trauma, bush fires. When there is a glimmer of light on the road to recovery, sport is one of the first things that people crave – the physical flow, the mental clarity of thinking of nothing but hitting that ball, the release of endorphins once our blood gets pumping, the sun, the fresh air, the righteousness of relaxing afterwards.
One of Tennis NZ’s objectives is to support clubs and communities to flourish through tennis, and we want to help your club ASSESS, ADJUST and ACTIVATE (see below) so that in a 'post-covid NZ', tennis is accessible and thriving, we can all build community through tennis and your courts can be buzzing. To contribute ideas, please email us.
Where is your club currently at? Did you have time to prepare for Level 4 during the 48 hours’ notice the nation was given? Here’s a quick checklist:
- If you are local (walking distance) to your club, ensure the clubhouse and courts are locked, secure, and not accessible to anyone – even members. Ensure the same person does this, not multiple people.
- Turn lights off (but activate security lighting), unplug electrical appliances, empty bins and other perishables, ensure perimeter is safe and clear from rubbish that could start fires. Ensure the same person does this, not multiple people.
- Check in with members and club users. Are they ok? Do club members need help if they are in complete isolation or in a solo bubble?
- If you have a coach or coaching team, check in with them. Coaches livelihoods are seriously at risk during this time, and you should work very closely with them to share your visions for the future when tennis is thriving again.
- Bookmark Tennis NZ’s Covid-19 web page for up to date notifications.
- Follow Tennis NZ’s Facebook page for up to date notifications, fun stories and videos.
- Look after your wellbeing and mental health. Share this with your membership and coaches too.
- Make yourself familiar with, and keep checking for updates on the 'Tennis Activity at Alert Levels' page
What can your club do during this downtime to keep things moving? What planning can you do to make sure your club is ready to go once the government levels adjust in tennis’ favour. Here are some ideas:
- Your club’s income might be affected because things aren’t operating like normal. Your coach’s income will definitely be affected. Your club and coach might be eligible for the Covid-19 Wage Subsidy which is simple, easy and quick to do. Organisations and individuals are getting paid within about 5 days. We sent this link via Coaching Matters last week, too.
- Your club should seriously consider being ready for casual users wanting to embrace the fresh air and BOOK A COURT at your club. Luckily, we’ve got a great solution for you to help increase your revenue when people can play again.
- What better time to get your club (and coach) set up on CLUBSPARK – a flexible and simple online system to help you manage your club.
- Consider how you set up membership payments in this time of financial uncertainty for everyone. Empathy and a gentle touch in communications to members will go a long way. Don’t forget, there are OTHER ways to make money for your club that don’t rely on membership payments. Right now, people will appreciate a far more flexible approach than the traditionally lump sum annual payment. Monthly direct debits, split payments, and pay as you go are likely to be the preference for many.
- Clubs that focus on flexibility for customers (members) will prosper. This is the time to change how it’s ‘always been done’.
- Check with your power provider if you’re concerned about bills over the coming weeks. Here are examples from Genesis and Meridian showing what support they are offering as a result of Covid-19.
- Cancel any subscriptions that aren't being used at this time - especially in the clubhouse. Examples might be SKY TV, internet, Netflix.
- Plan a thorough clean of your club house and other common areas for when the club is open for business again. There are professional options or DIY tips you can follow for when the time is right.
KEEPING IN TOUCH
- Missing committee meetings? Set the club up with a free Zoom account. You can host up to 100 participants who DON’T need their own account to join a call. If there’s three or more of you, you can chat for up to 40 minutes. What a great way to keep meetings short and to the point!
- Organise some virtual club nights on Zoom – pub quiz style or card games
- Missing playing? Let’s be honest, a lot of tennis films aren’t that great but surely there’s some gems on this list.
- Or if you want the real thing, there are plenty of full replays of classic matches on youtube
- Older members – contact them directly. They may not have social media or easy access to email so this is where a phone call is priceless.
- If you’re not signed up to our Club Matters Facebook group we recommend you join. We’re trying to create a community of club committee members, staff, volunteers and passionate club members where people can share ideas and ask questions – we need your input to make it work!
- Want to try your hand at a bit of coaching? Set aside a couple of hours and take the Tennis NZ Coaching Fundamentals online course. You’ll be directed to the ITF Academy site where this course lives. Simply register to the academy and then click on the education section. Scroll to the bottom and you’ll find four New Zealand modules.
- The USTA have a great online Rules of Tennis section where you can brush up on some fundamentals and the rules for some not so common occurrences.
BIG PICTURE THINKING
- Could this be the time to investigate that club merger you've been thinking about for a while? Did you know the 2019 'Club of the Year' winner Te Kura Hagley Park, had just recently merged in order to strengthen one another and tennis in the area?
- DON'T send membership renewal requests during lock down! Instead, why not offer an extra month's membership for free. This is an excellent way to build loyalty. Learn from Air NZ with their Koru membership and silver/gold status extensions.
- You must diversify your clubs income from traditional membership fees. Now is the time to make changes to introduce more customer friendly ways of using the club, and it's also the time to explore how you can attract new members and users in a way that is financially accessible and appealing to your local community. There are LOTS of great ideas here
- ClubSpark and Book a Court are excellent ways for you to manage membership and casual players.
- Do those jobs that you’ve put off for a while – tidying up spreadsheets, checking contracts for service providers, changing the ‘old ways’ of doing things.
- Now is the time for bright and adventurous ideas, time to start with a clean slate and time to be flexible, open minded and most of all focused on getting lots of people on your tennis courts in the best way that suits them!
How will your club open again, when the government advises it is safe to do so?
We are currently working on this list and plan to keep adding tips, recommendations and ideas. We are gladly looking for recommendations from you too! If you have any to add, please send them to email@example.com.
HEALTH AND SAFETY
- Contact tracing for businesses and facilities interacting with customers is vital especially at Level 1 and 2 when sport is 'back on the table'. Tennis NZ are creating a form which will be available for all clubs to use in order to safely and effectively keep track of all visitors to the courts.
- Set up ClubSpark and apply for Book a Court technology to manage your court bookings so you can track users easily (members and casual players)
- Love Tennis – After an amazing response last year, we’re planning another national Love Tennis event in 2020. Whilst things are still up in the air at the moment, we want to work with all clubs to be raring and ready to go once things get back to some semblance of normal. The planned date for Love Tennis Weekend 2020 is 5&6 September, we’ll be providing details soon to clubs, regions and associations on how to sign up.
Once it is safe to do so, consider these fun casual competition formats:
Touch Tennis – Adults or Teenagers. SO MUCH FUN!
Played over a Hot Shots net, using red Hot Shots balls and 21-23-inch racquets, this event is suitable for all levels of players and all ages. It is PERFECT for adults and teenagers. Players compete in a regular tiebreak, with all the usual tennis rules (serving into the diagonal box, hitting within the lines etc.). Round-Robin draw formats work best to give everyone a match against all other players.
Challenge events against neighbour clubs
A simple way to involve more players (and different players). Contact a neighbour or rival club for a challenge event. Best completed over a morning or afternoon, invite all players from both clubs and run matches. Ensure that players from the same club are playing with each other, and against players from the other club. To ensure max participation, don’t create teams with limited numbers; instead invite everyone and run with all the players that turn up. TIP: ask all players their MatchHub ratings and try to put similar level players together to increase the competitiveness.
Winners up, Losers down
Doubles matches start with teams in any combination. At the completion of a time period (10-minute, 15-minute), all matches finish up their current game. The winning team move up one court and the losing team move down one court. Once all teams have moved, partners split to different ends of the court to form a new combination. Keep track of how many games each player wins to find a winner. TIP: more often than not the winner will not necessarily be on the “top” court after a number of rounds.