US Squash has announced a range of new initiatives that will be rolled out in the new year to further support and advance the squash experience in the United States.
In an effort to support the high quality management of accredited (sanctioned) tournaments and events, US Squash will offer hands-on training to tournament directors via a new Tournament Directors Certification program. The program is aimed at dramatically improving the tournament experience for the 2013-2014 season by training tournament directors in recommended practices and providing them with the best resources for running accredited (sanctioned) events.
Additionally, US Squash’s Board of Directors have approved updated Codes of Conduct for Players, Parents, Coaches and Attendees at accredited (sanctioned) events, to elevate and maintain the high standard of sportsmanship in squash competition. The new codes have been developed to ensure enjoyment and safety at accredited (sanctioned) events, and are aligned with US Squash values of fairness, sportsmanship and respect.
The new Tournament Director Certification will be part of a number of changes to the popular Squash Professionals Affiliate (SPA) Program in support of teaching professionals, that will take effect from July 1, 2013. The SPA Program provides a range of valuable benefits to squash professionals at no cost, while supporting U.S. SQUASH initiatives to drive growth in the game.
Through the Tournament Director Certification program, tournament directors will gain full comprehension of all the tools, resources, and services available from US Squash, and field training will help ensure they have a first hand understanding of the policies and guidelines for accredited (sanctioned) events. Tournament Directors will also have the opportunity to ask questions to US Squash staff and train in a well supported environment at US Squash run events.
Believing the integrity of the game is of paramount importance, the streamlined codes of conduct include an outline of disciplinary actions to be imposed for violations to the appropriate code. Types of infractions ranging from minor to major are also outlined with examples of each provided. This level of detail, along with the clarified codes and more proactive policing of violations are expected to help preserve the integrity of squash and elevate the level of sportsmanship.
US Squash CEO Kevin Klipstein underscored what is stated in the preamble of the Player Code of Conduct noting, “The sport relies on everyone involved in the game to be courteous, respectful and responsible for his or her own behavior. This includes not only the players, but also the parents and coaches.
“As the sport continues to grow in the US, it becomes even more important for us to ensure everyone involved in the game understands the expectations associated with being part of the squash community, and the consequences of behaving irresponsibly.”
The Board of Directors also adopted Misconduct Reporting and Response Procedures, clarifying the steps required to report and respond to violations of a US Squash Policy, Guideline, Code of Conduct or Rule. In short, violations may be reported by members to event directors, who will then take appropriate action at that time, and in addition may in their discretion complete and file an Incident Report with U.S. SQUASH.
The Squash Professionals Affiliate (or SPA) Program, originally launched in 2008 and boasting a membership of nearly 100 professionals from across the country, provides a range of valuable benefits to squash professionals at no cost, while supporting US Squash initiatives to drive growth in the game. Benefits of the program range from discounts to recognition and training opportunities to incentives earned by supporting US Squash initiatives. Beginning July 1, 2013, the incentives back to squash professionals will be even more aligned with common objectives of increasing program participation and US Squash membership.