Frequently Asked Questions ......
Who can take part in Little Athletics?
Williamstown Little Athletics Centre caters for young people of all abilities aged 5 to 17 years.
What is Little Athletics?
Each week, athletes compete in a selection of events across the track and field disciplines (running, hurdles, jumps, and throws). Athletes are grouped with other children of their own age and gender and compete for weekly points that are counted towards their season tally and end-of-year awards. With a focus on participation, fun, and improvement, we run a “PB program” whereby athletes are rewarded throughout the season with small prizes to celebrate their achievement of personal best performance milestones.
Under 7 and Under 8 athletes are accompanied throughout their session by one or two coaches (depending on availability) to support technique development and provide drills and games to keep children engaged while they are waiting their turn.
For Under 9 athletes upwards, coaching opportunities will be provided at certain events (such as javelin) when coaches are available.
Under 6 athletes participate in a modified ‘On Track’ program providing a fun, games-based introduction to athletics skills with increasing exposure to the events as the season progresses.
The summer Track & Field season runs from October through to March and weekly competition takes place on Saturday mornings, with the occasional Wednesday evening Twilight event. The season starts on Saturday, October 7, with the early session (Under 6 to Under 8 athletes) starting at 8:30 am and concluding by 10 am (or by 9:30 am for the Under 6 On Track program) and Under 9 to Under 17 from 10 am to approximately 12:30 pm.
Your membership also permits you to participate in cross-country events, which are held between May and August at various locations across Melbourne's western suburbs.
Summer Track & Field competitions are held at Newport Park athletics track (adjacent to Newport Power Station). There are also several external events (for athletes aged Under 9 upwards) held throughout the season for which members can elect to compete, including relays, combine events, regional carnival, and state championships (should they qualify). These are not compulsory.
How do I register?
Registration is done via the Little Athletics Victoria (LAVIC) webpage.
You can calculate your child’s age here: Age Calculator - Little Athletics Victoria (lavic.com.au)
Returning members should receive an email prompt once the registration portal opens (late August/early September) or can register by going to the LAVIC website.
New athletes also have the option of registering for a two-week free trial (however, only athletes who are full members will accumulate official results and competition points). Trial athletes participate alongside registered athletes during the weekly competition. There are no separate “trial sessions”.
Can I just turn up?
You must register first – even if you are trialing.
Once you have registered, either as a member or for a trial, you are free to attend the next session.
What age group will my child be in?
The Little Athletics age groups are determined by the calendar year. To determine your child's age group, click here for a calculator.
What is the cost involved?
This season our fees are $180 per athlete ($120 for Under 6s). Discounts are available for families with more than one participating child. Fees include:
Little Athletics Victoria Affiliation
Optional mid-week training sessions
PB awards, medals & trophies
Winter cross-country season
The fee does not include centre uniform, which can be purchased at the track on Saturday mornings between 8:30 am and 10 am.
Do athletes wear a uniform?
Athletes must wear a Williamstown Little Athletics Centre uniform with a Coles patch (provided when you pick up your registration patch) sewn on. Uniforms can be purchased on Saturdays at the track (credit card/debit card only, no cash). Registration patches must also be worn each week as this is how we track results. These can be collected from the Newport track on October 1 (9am to midday), the evening of our Parent Information Night on October 5 (7pm to 8pm) or, if necessary, before competition starts on Saturday mornings.
Trial athletes are not required to wear a Centre uniform but must wear the trial patch they will receive via email.
Can I drop off my child?
No, you must not drop off your child (this is a Little Athletics Victoria statewide policy). A parent or guardian must attend the centre during all events. Any child without supervision may be withdrawn from competition until the adult returns.
The same applies to mid-week training sessions.
Do families have to help?
Yes! WLAC is run completely by volunteer parents and guardians. To conduct the weekly program, parent help is essential as there are approximately 100 volunteer duties that need to be filled. It is a requirement that all families (except for those in the Under 6 On Track program) complete at least five volunteer duties over the course of a season (but preferably more!). These duties can range from raking the long jump pit through to measuring throws, helping to organise athletes at the start of races to manning the BBQ or canteen. There is a link to the duty roster on TeamApp and you are welcome to sign up at any time ahead of competition.
In addition, if your child competes at external events (relays, regionals, state champs) you must also volunteer to complete a duty over the course of the day/weekend.
We also require parents to put their hands up to be team managers on Saturday mornings, which is a role that can be shared between more than one parent and involves being on the field to help co-ordinate an age group (particularly important for the younger athletes). The role does not require special skills and those who have done it in the past find it very rewarding.
We are also always on the lookout for parents interested in helping out with coaching. If you are interested, please contact Rebecca at email@example.com
Is there training involved?
Training is typically Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday afternoons. Session times and types of training (for example, sprints, jumps, throws) vary depending on coach availability so please check the “Events” tab on TeamApp (see below for info on how to join TeamApp) at the start of the week for training updates.
Do athletes have to compete each week and attend training?
Although we love seeing the kids every week, we understand that there are times when members cannot attend due to illness or other commitments. There is no need to let us know if your child won’t be there, however, if you had previously signed up for a duty you can no longer fulfill, please remove yourself from the roster so someone else can take your place.
Mid-week training is also not compulsory, but we do recommend it as training is linked with improved skills, performance, confidence and enjoyment. We encourage athletes to RSVP training attendance at the start of each week on TeamApp to help the coaches with their planning.
What if it’s raining?
Little Athletics is an “all weather” sport, meaning we compete in the rain as well as in the summer heat – assuming it is safe to do so. In instances of extreme weather, we may adapt or cancel the program by swapping around events to ensure athlete safety, but families will be advised of any cancellation on the morning of competition. Given our program is conducted in the morning and before the hottest part of the day, it is rare that we are impacted by extreme heat.
What is a PB?
A PB stands for a "personal best" performance. Athlete’s results for each event are recorded in the Little Athletics Results system. When an athlete runs faster, jumps further or throws further, then they have done a personal best (PB) performance.
How do I track my child's performances?
Results are available at ResultsHQ - Login.
Please ensure you join using the same email you used when registering your child with Little Athletics Victoria.
How can I stay up to date with information?
We use TeamApp as our main source of communication with members. This is where you will find the weekly newsletter, season calendar, Saturday morning competition schedule, details about training, upcoming events, and the volunteer duty roster.
Everything you need to know is on TeamApp so if you have any questions about an upcoming event, please make sure you check the latest newsletter as it’s highly likely the answer is in there.
To register your details with Team App, go to https://williamstownlittleathletics.teamapp.com/ and sign up for the “Season 23/24” access group by clicking on settings at the top right of the home page (the cogwheel, see following images) and then scroll down to access groups. This is important as if you are not signed up to the right access group, you won’t be able to view content relevant to this season.