Friday, November 18, 2011

Greetings from Austin, Texas

We just had a postcard sent from Texas.
Here is their story in their own words.

When Floorballcentral came to us to tell people about our club -- the National Champions -- I’ll admit, I felt like we were a bit over-hyped. Despite that giant trophy currently in our possession, the club’s week to week concerns are more about attracting new players rather than refining a competitive team to win tournaments. We’ve been making efforts to increase player participation in Club administration and promotion.

The Austin Floorball Club consists of weekly pickup games at the Virginia Brown Rec’ Center and weekly league games at the Austin Sports arena. We don’t have as large or as skilled a community of European ex-pats in the club so our club’s culture is very recreational. We currently have four teams and around 40 players. It’s a pretty sizable community of players, but its growth has staggered lately.

Our founder, Jeff “Jefe” Morris deserves a lot of credit for growing the club to its current size. The first actual league began in 2009. Since then we’ve seen highs of up to six teams in a single league.

Our current problems include a lack of delegation with club administration, underutilized social media and web pages, and anemic recruiting. Player run committees will address the delegation problem and in turn begin to attack the other problems.

To increase player recruitment and retention we’ve stepped up our social media and web presence.We’ve redesigned austinfloorballclub.org from a mostly static information page into an active blog in order to improve communication with new and current players. Stats and recaps of our league games are now posted weekly on the blog and our Facebook page. The Facebook page allows us to cultivate a communal atmosphere. Joe Guzman is investigating the possibility of our club attempting to break the Guiness record for longest Floorball game. Friendly trash talk on the page is common as well. We’ve also started posting Player-of-the-Week polls. The winners get to choose from a collection of old music CDs.

It remains to be seen how these efforts will help us recruit and retain players, but I hope this starts a conversation about tactics to grow the community around this sport. Are there any techniques you’ve used in your clubs to increase recruitment, interest, and participation?

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We say thank Norman, and we will definetly follow up on their world record attempt. We also have some snapshots from Austin that we will toss up at our facebook page.
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Caution

Research suggest that eye-injuries are more common in Floorball as compared to Tennis, but less common as compared to Squash (similar to Racquetball).
To minimize this risk of injury Floorballcentral recommend: Use certified protective eye-wear (mandated in many European areas for the youth). Do not lay down on the court. Follow the rules strict on stick height.

Also if you get addicted to this sport - do not blame us!