Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Club Members: Athletes
To start functioning as a club, you need to promote the club in the community to ensure potential athletes (people with ID) and their families are aware of the available opportunities. Start by identify ways to recruit ATHLETES.

Step 1: Athlete Recruitment

To find and recruit ATHLETES


Connect with local government, sports clubs, organizations and community groups working with people with ID outside of school and disability support systems.


Use locally popular social and traditional media to communicate club activities, events and ways to join, e.g., radio, newspaper, places of worship, grocery stores, community newsletters and notice boards.

Local Schools

  • Speak at parent meetings, teacher training days.
  • Advertise club activities to attract athletes, Unified partners and volunteers.
  • Collaborate to introduce Special Olympics programs.

Step 2: Athlete Registration

Per Special Olympics General Rules, an athlete must:

  • Be at least 8 years old and have an intellectual disability or a closely related developmental delay
  • Submit an Athlete Registration Formfor participation in Special Olympics
  • Submit a signed Athlete Release Form
  • Submit a Medical Form signed by a licensed medical professional


  • Athlete registration should be done according to your National/ State Program’s registration procedures. Contact their office to get guidance.

Step 3: Athlete Empowerment

A club should seek athlete opinions and involve athletes in everything that the Club does. Over time, the Club should offer athletes skills training to be able to take on leadership roles in the club.