Track & Field Tips for Parents + Athletes

CLOTHING AND OTHER GEAR

RUNNING SHOES
This is the most important piece of equipment so make sure shoes are lightweight, well-fitted and designed for running.  Please no cross trainers, high tops, or all-leather shoes as they tend to be heavy and don't offer adequate support.  
CLOTHING
It is recommended that athletes wear comfortable, breathable layers to each practice and track meet.  Warm-up pants or tights should be worn over shorts during warm-up and can be removed for the main part of the training session.  Always come prepared with layers for cold and wet weather - long sleeved shirt, light rain jacket, toque, light gloves can sometimes be necessary on summer days and particularly during evening spring practices!   Always keep these items handy in your backpack, just in case.
TRACK SPIKES
Spikes are not mandatory, particularly for JD athletes, but since most tracks in the province are newer synthetic material, spikes can be an asset for the athlete. Track spikes can range in price from $60 - $150 / pair and be purchased at Frontrunners or the Running Room. Used spikes are often available for purchase or swap at the track.
JD athletes are asked not to bring spikes to practice until requested by coaches.  Spikes are not to be worn during warm-up laps and dynamic warm-up drills.  Coaches will announce when it is time to put on spikes.
 
NTFC SINGLETS AND JACKETS
Singlets must be worn at all sanctioned meets. Please be sure to label with your athlete’s name.
Monogrammed club jackets and clothing are available to order early in the season.
PRACTICES
  • Bring A LABELLED water bottle to each practice and track meet.  
  • Eat a healthy meal or snack at least one hour prior to practice start time. 
  • All athletes are placed in age groupings and stay with this group through the season.  It is up to coaches to decide if a child would benefit from practicing with an older, or younger group, based on experience and developmental level.  
  • Each practice is divided into three sessions where the athletes cycle through a run, a jump and a throw event.  Each athlete is expected to participate in all three areas at each practice.  If there is some reason your child cannot participate in a particular event area, please speak to the coach.
  • If your child has an injury PLEASE do not bring them to practice.   Parents of injured athletes will be contacted for pick up.
  • Parents not directly helping coaches are asked to use the grandstand for spectating.
TRACK MEETS
MEET FEES
To compete at any of the Island or Mainland track meets you must register your athlete online.  Links to registration pages will be emailed and available on the website and Facebook page well before registration deadlines, which are typically one week before meet dates.  Each event entered is paid for online. Check our 2020 TRACK MEET SCHEDULE to organize your calendar!  Nanaimo's Elwood Wylie Meet will not require payment but you must still register your athlete(s).  Watch for important emails!
AT THE MEET
On the day of the track meet, arrive at least 60 minutes before your first event.  Upon arrival at the venue, locate fellow NTFC club members and coaches, pick up your competition number, become familiar with the venue and proceed to warm-up with your fellow club competitors.  At this time, parents can make themselves available to volunteer at the Finish Line.
 
Track events take priority over field events. If an athlete has two events that overlap, they must check in to both events and leave the field event only long enough to complete their race.  After your race, return immediately back to the field event – PLEASE BE AWARE THAT YOU MAY MISS A ROUND.
After your event/race, check in with one of your coaches.
 
WHAT TO BRING LIST FOR TRACK MEETS
  • NTFC singlet and shorts
  • Running shoes, extra pair of socks.
  • Spikes and tools (spike wrench, extra spikes)
  • Sweat pants/tights/long sleeve shirt/jacket to wear during warm ups and in between events.
  • Hat and sunscreen.
  • Blanket and/or chair (some venues don’t have stands or bleachers), umbrella or sun tent.
  • Water bottle(s)
  • Cooler packed with healthy snacks/lunch.
  • Most meets have a concession with food and beverages available for sale.
 
RESULTS
  • Event results are posted onsite within an hour or two after the event.
  • Full online results will be posted on the NTFC website.
  • Ribbons/medals should be picked up at the meet.  Coaches will pick up any awards left behind and these will be available for pick up at practices in the Concession.