Creating a sports club is much easier than you think. It is true that there are a series of procedures that you have to carry out, although the reality is that anyone can create a sports club , if they know how and if they have the necessary help.
But first of all, I think it is important to know what exactly a club is. There are many people who confuse a club, with an association or with a company. Here we give you the keys to be able to differentiate them.
Anyway, keep this concept: “A club does not have profit motive, even if economic activities are carried out.”
Having this clear, you should know that there are different types of club. So that you can choose the type that suits you best, we will indicate the characteristics of each one. Then, I will detail the steps necessary to create a sports club and I will provide you with the link to register directly online in your Autonomous Community.
What is a sports club? Differences with an association
A sports club should be open to anyone who wants to join it. A club is not, therefore, a trading company. Membership registration and cancellation must be “practically” free. Although there is a particular case to regulate the entry of partners.
You need to put yourself in a situation and understand the differences between a club and an association. The main inequality between the two is found in their legal regulation and that a sports club, as its name indicates, has to practice sports; while an association can carry out activities of any kind.
The Law 10/1990 of October 15 of the sport establishes the state regulations on sports clubs; there are also regional regulations in each Autonomous Community. The clubs can be Basic, Elementary, or Sports Public Limited Companies.
With regard to associations, Organic Law 1/2002 of March 22 regulates the right of association. It refers, essentially, to non-profit associations that do not have specific regulations. Each activity may have regional or municipal regulations. Freedom of association allows anyone to create an association without prior authorization. Like nobody can be forced to create an association or to associate.
What is the use of creating a sports club?
You may not have stopped to think, why it is important to create a sports club. And, it has a series of advantages over other types of organizations.
Sports practice and competition
In most cases, in order to compete at the federated level, it is necessary that the group of people who want to do it is organized as a club. When the club is constituted, you must register with the corresponding federation.
There are various grants of a regional nature in general, but also at a local regional or national level for sports clubs.
These are normally subject to a number of conditions. Among which, the most common are the fact of competing in some type of official competition and not having debts with the Treasury or Social Security.
VAT and Corporation Tax
The clubs, being non-profit organizations, do not pay VAT or Corporation Tax. There are exceptions, however. If the club carries out any activity for which it receives money that does not belong to the members, this activity will have VAT. For example, organizing a summer campus. For membership fees, a receipt is made without VAT.
Advertising and sponsorship
As a club, you will be able to obtain a series of additional income from advertising and / or sponsorship. Here we tell you why it is important for your club to have sponsors.
What should you know about a club?
Compensation and salaries
The positions of the Board of Directors should not have remuneration. In the case of hiring employees, the contractual relationship will be the same as if it were a company. The club having the same obligations as a company and having to comply with labor regulations.
A club has to take out, as a minimum, civil liability insurance. If the club has employees, a collective agreement insurance is also required. If the club has workers, you must take out a collective agreement insurance. Finally, and although it is not mandatory, it is advisable to have other insurance such as theft insurance.
Who makes up a sports club?
Well, now that you know what a club is, what advantages it has and what “disadvantages”, we proceed to learn more about how they are composed. Sports clubs have a governing body, which is called the General Assembly. This Assembly is made up of all the associates, and will have to meet at least once every year.
On the other hand, there is a representative body that is responsible for managing the club: the Board of Directors. Within the Board of Directors, there are different figures, where the most important is that of the president. Visit this post that I have written if you want to know all the people who make up the Board of Directors of a club.
What types of club exist?
Within what are sports clubs, there are also different types. Before taking any further steps, you have to decide if the club will be Elementary or Basic. It could also be a Sports Limited Company. But, in the first instance, I don’t recommend it. In this post I will talk to you in more detail about what are Sports Public Limited Companies and when to create one. Clubs and professional teams that participate in official professional sports competitions at a state level are usually of this type.
Elemental Sports Club
The Elemental Sports Club is a private, non-profit association, which is made up exclusively of individuals with the objective of carrying out sports activities for its members.
Basic Sports Club
The Basic Sports Club is made up of individuals or legal entities and, like an Elemental Sports Club, it is a private, non-profit association. It has the same objective: to promote the practice of one or several sports modalities among its associates and to encourage participation in sports activities and competitions.
Advantages of a Basic Club versus an Elementary Club
- The club is a legal entity and has full capacity to act. You can receive public grants, act in court, sign contracts, receive donations, have assets, manage businesses, etc.
- The directors are liable to the club and the members are only liable for the acts in which they intervene, while in an Elementary Club, all the members are liable for the debts and obligations contracted.
- May be declared of public utility.
Disadvantages of creating a Basic Club versus an Elemental Club
- In theory, it has higher set up costs. The constitution must be made in a public document, before a notary.
- Bylaws must be drawn up.
I leave you a comparative document between basic and elementary clubs detailed, prepared by the General Directorate of Sport in Aragon.
What does it take to form a sports club?
Create an Elementary Sports Club
You have to make a private document called “Foundational Document”, and it has to contain the following points:
- Full identification of the founders (3 or more).
- Identification of the delegate or person in charge.
- Club address.
- Manifestation of the will to become a sporting purpose and modality.
- Manifestation of submission to sports regulations of the Autonomous Community and Federation to which it belongs.
Bylaws, in this case, are not mandatory.
To prove the existence of a C.D.E, a Certificate of Sports Identity is required, where the constitution and recognition of the Autonomous Community is accredited. Don’t forget that you have to renew this certificate every three years.
Create Basic Sports Club
A public document called “founding act” must be signed before a notary public, which contains information on the founders (5 minimum) and the manifestation of the will to establish themselves and the object (exclusive sports).
The statutes must be compulsorily drawn up and they must contain the following:
- Name, purpose and address.
- Acquisition and loss of membership.
- Rights and duties of the partners.
- Government, administration and representation bodies. Election or designation regime. Liability regime.
- General Assembly or equivalent.
- Board of Directors: 5 to 15 members.
- Electoral Commission.
- President elected by the assembly.
- Disciplinary regime
- Economic-financial and patrimonial regime
- Regime of dissolution or extinction and destination of the assets
- Documentary system: minute books, accounting, partners
We have prepared a model of bylaws for you to take a look at and adapt it to the reality of your club. Download the template by clicking here.
Finally, the members of the Board of Directors must be appointed.
The existence is accredited by certifying the registration in the Registry of Sports Associations of the Autonomous Community.
What are the procedures to create a club?
First of all, it is important that you understand that the procedures may be different depending on the Autonomous Community. Here I expose a series of “standard” requirements that are repeated in most communities, but the most practical thing would be to consult it later for each case. At the end of the post, you have a link with the registry of sports entities for each Autonomous Community.
The procedures for an Elementary Sports Club would be:
- Application form
- Founding act
- Internal operating rules or statutes
- NIF / NIE of the signatories of the founding act
- Proof of payment of fees
The procedures for a Basic Sports Club would be:
- Application form
- Founding certificate notarized
- NIF / NIE of the signatories of the founding act
- Proof of payment of fees
Afterwards, it is necessary to register the club in the corresponding Sports Federation. For this, the private document of incorporation will be necessary.
It is interesting to seek legal advice to ensure that all the requirements and procedures that must be submitted to the Federation are in order.
As a summary of all the above, I leave you an explanatory video in which how to create a Sports Club is shown.
Procedures for the registration of sports entities in each Autonomous Community
We leave you a direct link to the registry of sports entities of each autonomous community. In almost all of them you can register online. And if you are from Ceuta or Melilla, don’t worry. There is a phone where they will take care of you and help you create your club quickly.
I have already created the club. Now what?
It’s time to take the first steps to create your sports club , and for this:
1- Make a plan and a calendar . They will be very important points to start shaping the project.
2- Define short and long-term goals as a club. Normally you will focus on short-term goals, but don’t forget the goal and take actions that get you closer to it.
3- Choose a clubhouse . Try to get it without having to assume an initial cost. A loan from the city council, someone you know, the facilities themselves …
4- Define the roles of each person founder and of the board of directors. You all have to pitch in. Even more so in the early days of the club. To be optimal, assign roles to each one.
5- Calculate the financing that you are going to need and move to obtain it. There are different routes of entry. To begin with, it is interesting that you look for sponsors to give you the initial push.
6- Recruit partners: Start with close people and use digital media and collaborations to go further.
7- Think about facilities and material that you are going to need. Start by borrowing or renting it and you will grow little by little.
8- Define a schedule for activities and training. Be flexible in the beginning and adapt to partners and athletes.
9- Seeks support for management. You can start with Word and Excel documents or use sports management software .
10- And remember, if you need help, ask for it! There are always people willing to collaborate in this type of project.
To help you with these first steps, we have also prepared a Beginning of the Season Guide. That can help you guide the first steps before starting sports.
Much courage and strength. From my experience, I can tell you that undertaking is hard, yes. But it’s so comforting, it’s worth it, trust me.
If you already have a club, I invite you to continue discovering the content of our blog focused on sports clubs . You can also subscribe to our newsletter , where we send exclusive content for directors, coordinators, coaches and managers of sports clubs. With tricks, discounts and tips to make the day-to-day management of the club “more enjoyable”.
If you have not created the club yet and you have questions, write a comment so that we can help you solve it. If, on the other hand, you are clear that you want to create a club and you are looking for help during the process, fill out this form so that we can contact you .