Sports Day: Teacher preparation

sports day relay race

Sports Day: Teacher preparation

Sports day is coming up and it’s time to start planning the day to be able to have a fun and safe sports day. Teachers are at the heart of every sports day, from setting it up to helping children with the activities. It is important for teachers to think about every small detail for the day and plan for different outcomes, activities and weather.

To help you with this, we have created the perfect teacher preparation guide for sports day.


Set a time and a date

Working with your headteacher or SBM, make sure to set a time and a date early to notify parents and pupils. Parents can also make arrangements for the day and be able to attend if this is done early enough. It is also good to plan a second date and time in mind as a backup in case the sports day can’t go ahead on the original date.

Once the date and time are set and agreed upon, spread the word to your pupils and notify parents. You could create posters with your colleagues to pin up around the school and design emails or website notifications for parents.


Prepare the site

Figure out with your colleagues the best place to hold the sports day. Look into booking a place if it’s not on school grounds. Once the space has been decided, start setting up the area ready for the day. Section areas off to create parts where parents can watch and respray any track linings if needed. After this, you can set up the equipment for every activity and allocate areas for each activity.


Think of activities to set

There are many sports day activities pupils can participate in. Get together with your colleagues to plan what sports activities you will put on. Think about the best competitive activities that will work for all pupils. It is best to consider the age ranges of pupils participating, especially if sports days are split by certain year groups.

You could offer a mixture of traditional activities, such as egg and spoon race, sack race and relay race, and ones with a twist, such as hula hoop race or beanbag balance hopscotch.

Once decided, ensure to explain what will happen on the day to pupils and parents, so everyone knows what to expect.


Think of equipment to use

When you know what activities pupils will compete in, it is vital to think of the equipment that will be needed. Take a look at the resources already available and list down what will need to be purchased. Ensure to order in plenty of time before the sports day so that everything will be prepared and ready.

Focus on new equipment that can be used over and over again for other sports such as hurdles, skipping ropes, cones and footballs. Consider a sports day pack to reduce costs and have everything you need for the day.

Think about rewards to give for participation and winning such as trophies, medals, sweets and stickers.


sports day pupils playing tug of war

Prepare for medical emergencies

Injuries and medical issues can arise quite frequently during sports day due to the exercise. Make sure your pupils can be treated properly and quickly in case of a medical emergency. Have a full first aid kit with everything that may be needed, from plasters and bandages to sterile wipes and ice packs. Make sure to have a first aid box to store everything away neatly and together so it’s easy to access when needed.


Avoid common injuries

Due to the different sports activities held during the day, there can be common injuries that can occur. Be aware of them and be prepared to tackle them to reduce the impact of injuries on pupils. These common injuries are:


Sprains and strains-

Sprains can occur regularly during sports day, especially sprained ankles. Have plenty of ice packs in a shady area to help swelling.


Minor head injuries-

Bumped heads and minor head injuries can be common when children are participating in sports. Make sure to be aware of how to treat a head injury and have first aiders in case.



As sports day is during the summer, it can be common for children to get sunburned. Be prepared for sunny weather and have plenty of sunscreen that pupils can use to avoid being sunburned.



Sports day can be exciting for children, and it’s easy for them to forget to stay hydrated. Between activities, plan short breaks where pupils can replenish, rest and hydrate. This makes sure that they stay hydrated, and they won’t feel like they are missing out on the fun.


Asthma attacks-

Many children are impacted by asthma, and this can be heightened during physical exercise and pollen from outdoors. Make sure you are aware of which pupils have asthma and be able to spot an asthma attack so you can deal with it quickly. Have in-date emergency inhalers at the ready in case.


Think of refreshments

You and your colleagues must think about refreshments to offer pupils and parents to keep them going throughout the day. Hopefully, the day will be warm and dry, so drinks will be needed to cool and hydrate everyone. Offer bottles of cold water and have enough for all pupils and parents. You could even offer juice for pupils who don’t like water as much.

You could offer snacks as well to keep pupils going as through exercise, they can work up an appetite. To help keep costs down, you could ask for parents help to bring in drinks and snacks too.



Use this teacher preparation guide to create a safe, fun and organised sports day that your pupils will love. Make sure to evaluate how each stage of the planning and the day itself went so that you can make improvements for next year. Before the day, keep an eye on aspects such as the weather to see if the day can go ahead or needs to be rescheduled too. Doing this makes sure the day can go ahead safely.


Want some help with activities to hold for your sports day? Read our fun sports day activities for children blog.

<a href="" target="_self">Amber Vaccianna</a>

Amber Vaccianna

Hope blog writer

5 July 2023

Tags - Products | Sports

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