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4 min read

12 easy steps to plan fun sports day activities for your school.

Plan fun and inclusive sports day activities

School sports day is an important event in the calendar for many children across primary and secondary schools. It is a time for children to discover interests and unknown talents, giving them time to shine outside of the classroom.

But organising a sports day is no easy task; we share top tips for PE subject leaders or heads of departments.


12 steps on how to organise a school sports day

  1. Plan your sports day in advance.
  2. Book a date (and a backup date).
  3. Organise sports teams.
  4. Prepare for allergies and medical conditions.
  5. Monitor staff first aid training.
  6. Decide the sports day activities you will host.
  7. Ensure safety during your school's sports day.
  8. Use a first aid kit checklist.
  9. Share vital medical information with staff.
  10. Prepare the school site for sports day.
  11. Promote your sports day online to parents.
  12. Avoid the top 5 common injuries and incidents on sports day.



1. Plan your sports day in advance

Sports day is approaching quickly. It's best to get the administrative tasks done early to avoid any last-minute stress.

Plan your sports day ahead of time. You can choose between individual events and team games. Make sure to distribute teams evenly in terms of sporting ability.


2. Book a date and backup date

The summer weather can be hit or miss; prepare for all eventualities with a backup date secured in the school diary. Check that there are no other residential or summer fairs that week that may clash with your plans. 


3. Organise sports teams

Your sports day may have individual events or team games; organise the teams in advance to ensure an even distribution of sporting ability. Your school may operate using a house team system, notify teachers of the sports teams as soon as possible. It may be useful to prepare stickers with house team names on them for the younger children.


4. Prepare for allergies and medical conditions

Using your online first aid software, highlight the allergies and medical conditions across the whole school or key stage, and ensure the correct medical equipment is available (and medications are within the expiry dates). Preparing for medical conditions in advance can help your day run smoothly and give parents confidence that you have thought of every eventuality.


5. Monitor staff first aid training

Sports day can bring the risk of increased injury or accident; having first aid trained staff to support throughout the day makes the activities safer for the children and helps the day to run smoothly. Using Medical Tracker, you can number of first aid-trained staff, including getting a 4-week notification when their certificate expires.


6. Decide the sports day activities you will host

Competitive or non-competitive, that is the question. Some settings may choose to go down the non-competitive participation route for sports days, whilst others may stick to the traditionally placed competitive events. Whichever your school chooses, it is important to explain to pupils and parents the structure of the events to avoid confusion or disappointment.


7. Ensure safety during your school's sports day

Safety is paramount for activities on days like sports day, it is a day where more first aid injuries can be recorded due to the physical nature of the events. Having online first aid software where injuries and incidents are recorded easily on a handheld device is useful for keeping track of any first aid accidents.


8. Use a first aid kit checklist

Your first aid kits must be up to date to effectively administer correct medical treatment during sports day. It is recommended to audit your first aid kits; we have a handy downloadable first aid kit checklist that is DfE compliant! 


9. Share vital medical information with staff

When staff are given their allotted event or race, they will be interacting with children who are from different year groups or classes. It is important to share medical information with staff on the day and prior to the organised event.

Medical Tracker for schools allows IHCPs to be shared, allergy information highlighted, MAR sheets to ensure pupils receive the correct medication throughout the event and one-page profiles, allowing for positive and prepared interactions between pupils and staff.


10. Prepare the school site for sports day

There are lots of administrative jobs that are often forgotten about when organising a sports day, like booking for the grass on the playing fields to be cut (or checking that the hired venue is prepared). Respraying the running track lines on the grass and sectioning off the parent watching area and first aid bay. Don’t forget to decide if you will be awarding house points, stickers, ribbons or rosettes to the winners of each event.


11. Promote your sports day online to parents

Lastly, promote your school sports day via your social media platform or school communication platform. Share our downloadable sports day essentials for parents as a reminder for your event. Edit the reminder to add the dates, venues, and timings.

Want to get prepared for sports day? Contact our customer support team to get a quote for your school.



12. Avoid the top 5 common injuries and incidents on sports day.


Sprains and strains

Sprained ankles are one of the top injuries found in a sporting event, from running on uneven grass or rushing to win a race. Ensure your first aiders are prepared with plenty of ice packs in a shaded area nearby the event (it may be a good idea to supply first aiders with a hi-vis tabard too). 


Minor head injuries in school

Bumped heads or minor head injuries can be common during physical activity events or PE lessons, especially when team games are involved. Share basic first aid information with your staff prior to the day itself, giving a foundation knowledge of how to treat a minor head injury.



Sports days are usually in the summer months to enjoy the drier ground and allow for outdoor activities. However, with the sun comes sunburn. Send a reminder out to all parents prior to the day to remind them to pack sunburn ready for the events. It is useful to know which children may have allergies to certain sun creams via your online first aid software.



Sometimes the day's excitement can run away with the children, and staying hydrated gets bumped down the priority list.

Organise your schedule of events. Plan short rest breaks between each race or station. These breaks will allow the children to take on water. You can download our free sports day parent reminder to send to parents and share via social media before the event.


Asthma Attack

Asthma impacts many children in schools, often heightened with physical exercise and pollen when outdoors. The perfect storm during sports day.

Share information on how to help during an asthma attack with parents, pupils, and staff members. Highlight to staff which pupils are asthmatic. Check that inhalers (including emergency inhalers) are up to date. Receive parent permission for the use of an emergency inhaler. 


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