At TOUCHRUGBY.co.nz we love the sport of TOUCH and spent countless hours developing and promoting it. We believe TOUCH is a mass participation sport and that promoting bigger and better competitions is the best way forward.
We are structured as a commercial business and cant hide from that fact, however our outcomes are the most noble of any sports administration body. At the height of summer we provide weekly games of touch for close to 450 teams, more than most well-funded sports federations and all done without a single cent contribution from any agency or funder. As an organisation we are proudly affiliated to our National and Regional Sports organisation and pay sizable affiliation fees to 3 Touch provinces and the National Body. We pay hefty PAYE, Income Tax and GST bills and we pay all this happily because we know what wonderful facilities we play on and importantly the pathways that belonging to legitimate sports codes brings.
As an organisation we strive to be innovative, provide friendly referees at well managed and located venues around Auckland. In addition to the weekly touch competitions we promote fun, one-off Tournaments such as the “proud to play” and Waiheke Social Touch competition. We dabble in modified versions of the sport such as Turbo Touch and Tag, only as far as it give our teams something NEW in a competitive social sports market. We are owner-managed, with a great IT backbone to support team captains, who are the cornerstone of our business. We are not scared to try new playing surfaces, new formats of the game and rule variations, draw formats that encourage like vs like participation. We are constantly trying to give more accessibility to women, children, over 35’s, corporates and even the elite Teams!
We make mistakes all the time, but own up to them and try to improve when we can!
As we come to the end of Summer, when the focus tends to shift from participation to winning we get asked by a few teams about the way we do things!
- Why is Touch so expensive?
- We want prize-money?
- Better teams should get better prizes!
- Surely A grade teams are more important!
Here are some of our perspectives and practices in this regard.
- TOUCH is cheap. Per game played, per minute of organised exercise or recreation I challenge anyone to find a cheaper alternative. I am referring to “organised” sport and not volunteer, charity or sponsor driven recreation.
- TouchRugby.co.nz has competitions across Auckland that vary between $2-$5 per person per game. Our Central venues are more expensive, but a little further out, touch can be played significantly less money.
- TOUCHRUGBY has NOT INCREASED FEES at major competitions for 3-4 years. Winter, Coxes Bay, Massey, Juniors.
- We PAY referees and would happily train and PAY any players who could not afford their fees.
- We do “SPEND” significant money on Prizes. We budget 7% of our turnover for Prizes. We work harder to increase that value of those prizes to 10-14% of our Turnover. We do this through barter deals and discounts with our sponsors.
- We do value our Elite teams. We acknowledge that they do set the tone of the competition as they provide examples of the beauty of the game of Touch, that training and hard work delivers results. Without watching these teams, social teams could never understand the value of patterns, settles and set moves.
- Their passion for the sport and countless hours away from our competition IS possibly the most valuable to us. That is where the deliver their true value, however it is a little known fact that elite teams on a competition / module level Elite teams cost us a lot more than our lovable loser teams!
- Elite teams are demanding and rightly so. They get the fastest and most reliable referees, very often 2 of them.
- They tend to get the preferential fields because elite touch requires full width and length.
- We discount their multiple team entry as a way of saying thank-you, but in terms of business outgoings they are paying less per game.
- ELITE teams invariably WIN, receiving prizes and sizable discounts off future participation.
- Unfortunately, and it is a consequence we accept, they cause many of our lovable loser teams to drop out. It is merely a fact that, on the whole teams losing more games than they win over the season are likely to not ENJOY themselves as much and might chose a different recreation alternative.
So the long and short of it is… We Love our Lovable Loser teams as much as our Elite teams and will continue to award equal prizes!