How to start a new sports club

We value your club's contribution to the local community.

This section has been developed to help with your club's success. The principles can also be used by other community organisations.

Clubs and organisations play a significant role providing opportunities for people to engage in sport and physical activity. They encourage us to enjoy an active and healthy lifestyle. Find useful information about starting a new club below.

Starting a new club – a simple, six-step approach

Starting a club can be fun and rewarding. Here is an effective six-step approach:

1. Call a meeting with potential members to assess the need for the club. Discuss the formation of it considering the following questions:

  • will your club meet a need in the community?
  • are there other similar organisations locally?
  • do you have enough support, volunteers and members to run the club?
  • are there suitable facilities available?

2. Plan a meeting. You will need to include the following:

  • have a clear meeting agenda
  • agree on a name for the club
  • establish an interim committee.

3. Create a constitution (otherwise known as rules) to govern how the club will run.

The model rules supplied by the Office of Fair Trading provide a template for developing a set of club-specific rules.

4. Call the first annual general meeting (AGM). At this meeting, you will need to:

  • agree on and adopt the constitution
  • agree to incorporate (clubs must have at least seven members to incorporate)
  • elect a management committee in accordance with the constitution
  • keep the minutes as an official record.

Download our best practice checklist for use in the preparation of an AGM(DOCX, 39KB)

5. Register and receive an Australian Business Number (ABN).

6. Create bank accounts in line with OFT Regulations. Accounts must:

  • be in the name of your association
  • be kept in a Queensland branch of your chosen financial institution
  • require at least two signatories to access funds.

Starting a new club – incorporation

An incorporated association is a legally separate body. It has the same powers, benefits and responsibilities as a person.

For example, an incorporated association can, in its own name:

  • own property
  • sign contracts
  • appear in court.

An incorporated association is legally separate from its members. This means that:

  • the management committee makes decisions for the association
  • the association becomes legally liable for these decisions
  • individuals on the committee who act in good faith, within the law and in the best interests of the association are usually not personally liable.

Your incorporated association must:

  • comply with the Associations Incorporation Act 1981 and the Associations Incorporation Regulation 1999
  • review its financial affairs every year
  • lodge copies of your constitution, annual returns and financial statements with the Office of Fair Trading.

The Queensland government has useful information about how to set up and run an incorporated association.

Starting a new club – what else?

Other things to consider in the early stages of club setup include:

  • obtaining a common seal
  • insurance
  • hiring or leasing facilities
  • affiliating with the governing state organisation for your club (if applicable).

How to manage your club effectively

The following pages contain information and useful links for clubs: