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Track and Field - Track Events

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Elementary - Interschool 2018

Sprints/400m/800m/1500m/3000m/Relays

Equipment

A fully stocked first aid kit must be readily accessible. (Consult Appendix D – Sample First Aid Kit)

A working communication device (e.g., cell phone) must be accessible.

Determine that all equipment is safe for use (e.g., no sharp edges, sharp corners, cracks, or splinters). Students must be encouraged to report equipment problems to the coach.

Check batons for cracks or splinters.

Check safety of starting blocks if they are used.

Starters pistols must be locked away when not in use.

Clothing/Footwear/Jewellery

Appropriate clothing and footwear must be worn (this includes running shoes). Grades 6, 7 and 8 athletes may wear 5mm (0.25”) spikes on rubberized or asphalt tracks or 9mm (0.5”) spikes on gravel tracks. No track shoes with spikes removed or turf shoes permitted. No bare feet or socks without shoes permitted.

The wearing of jewellery during practices and competitions must meet the rules of the governing body of the sport/activity, OFSAA, and local athletic association. Consult the Fundamentals of Safety when jewellery is not addressed by the governing body of the sport/activity, OFSAA or the local athletic association

When long hair poses a safety risk it must be secured. Devices (for example, hair pins, clips and barrettes) used to tie back long hair must not present a safety concern.

Facilities

Determine that all facilities are safe for use. Students must be encouraged to report facility problems to the coach.

All tracks must be inspected annually and maintained as necessary.

Run-out areas must be in place for all running events, school halls and stairway running.

“Blacktop” strips and open fields may be used if areas are suitable, smooth, clean, level and provide safe footing and traction.

For practices: Holes, hazards (e.g. glass, rocks, sprinkler heads, sewer grates), and severely uneven surfaces must be identified. The conditions must be made safe or the activity must be modified or moved to a safe location. Hazards which cannot be removed must be brought to the attention of the athletes. Coach must notify principal/designate of unsafe field conditions.

For competitions: Where hazardous conditions that cannot be avoided are identified by the coach and/or officials the conditions must be made safe or the competition must be cancelled or moved to a safe location. Coach must notify principal/designate of unsafe field conditions.

Turning points, finish lines, end zones, and boundaries must be a safe distance away from walls, stages, equipment, trees, posts, natural hazards, and holes. Walls, stages, equipment, trees and posts must not be used as turning points, finish lines, end zones or boundaries. A marker (for example, line or pylon) must be designated and be properly identified.

Consult Appendix G - Safety in Activity Rooms, for safety precautions when using non-gym areas.

When running takes place off school site for a warm, conditioning run and/or is an integral part of the activity:

  • Coaches must do a safety check ‘walk through’ in order to identify potential problems prior to initial use of route or course.
  • Coaches must outline to the students the route or course (e.g., notice of areas to approach with caution) before the start of the run.
  • Coaches must determine that students are not crossing busy intersections unless directly supervised.

Indoor Running – Use of Hallways and Stairs

At turnaround or end points, designate a safety or slow down zone (e.g. using pylons).

Designate a safety zone (e.g. using pylons) for all doors that open out into the hall.

Where school hallways or stairways are used for training purposes, the following appropriate safety measures must be in place:

  • hallway protrusions must be clearly marked
  • inform appropriate staff members of times and locations of indoor practices
  • no running to take place where showcases presents a hazard
  • hall double doors have to be secured open
  • monitors must be positioned at corners
  • floor surface must provide safe footing and traction
  • stairways must have a railing
  • students must be instructed on safety procedures for running stairs (e.g. one step at a time, blind spots, spatial awareness, using railings for balance, maintaining body control, respect for personal space)

Special Rules/Instructions

Be aware of students whose medical condition (e.g., asthma, anaphylaxis, casts, previous concussion, orthopaedic device) may affect participation. (Consult Fundamentals of Safety)

Students must not participate in the activity until they receive information on concussion prevention specific to the activity, inherent risks of the activity (e.g. outline possible risks and ways to minimize the risks), and procedures and rules for safe play. Students must receive instruction on the importance of reporting symptoms related to a suspected concussion.

Refer to the school board’s transportation procedures related to communicating with parents/guardians the location of an off-site activity and the means of transportation used as well as to the need for obtaining parent/guardian permission.

Previous training, fitness level and the length of time and intensity of physical activity must be taken into consideration.

The activities must be based on skills that are taught.

The skills must be taught in proper progression.

A proper warm-up and cool-down must be included.

Fair play and rules of the sport must be taught and strictly enforced.

No student may participate in a competition without prior skill development and practice.

Grade 6, 7 and 8 athletes who are wearing track spikes must be given instruction and practice on safe use.

When running above distances in practice, athletes may be temporarily out of sight and must run in pairs or groups.

Adequate liquid replacement (personal water bottles, water fountains) must be accessible for students before, during and after physical activity to prevent dehydration.

Environmental Considerations

When environmental conditions may pose a risk to student safety (e.g. thunderstorms [lightning] or student(s) with asthma, triggered by air quality), teachers must take into consideration their school board/school’s protocols and procedures related to:

  • environmental conditions (consult Appendices F-1 to F-6: Lightning Protocol, Sample Air Quality Index, Sample Temperature, Tornado, Ultra Violet Index, and Wind Velocity Preparedness Guides]); and
  • insects (e.g., mosquitoes and ticks [consult the school/school board’s protocols and/or regional Public Health Department’s website]).

Students must receive instruction on safety procedures related to environmental conditions and be made aware of ways to protect themselves (e.g. sun burn, heat stroke).

At all times the school board’s weather and insect procedures are the minimum standards. In situations where a higher standard of care is presented (e.g., outside activity providers, facility/program coordinators), the higher standard of care must be followed.

Supervision

On-site supervision for sprints, relays and hallway/stair running.

In-the-area supervision for middle distance (400m, 800m and 1500m).

Constant visual supervision of starter’s pistol when in use.

Students must be informed that the use of equipment and the gymnasium are prohibited without supervision. In addition to verbal communication, the doors must be locked or signs must be posted indicating that students are not allowed to use the gym unless appropriately supervised.

Coaching Qualifications

The head coach must demonstrate knowledge of the sport, skills and strategies to the principal or designate.

All coaches must be familiar with and implement where applicable the criteria outlined in Appendix P – Coaching Expectations.

First Aid

An individual who takes responsibility for providing first aid to injured athletes through the entirety of a practice and/or competition must follow the school board’s concussion protocol and the school’s First Aid Emergency Response (consult Appendix E - Sample First Aid Plan and Sample First Aid Emergency Response).

Also see Fundamentals of Safety section to view complete safety requirements.