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Beyond its popularity globally, basketball is also one of the most popular types of recreational sports leagues in the country. That’s because rec league basketball is accessible to people of all ages and skill levels while providing camaraderie and competition. Are you interested in starting or running your own rec league program? If so, A-G Specialty Insurance can set you up for your best shot.

9 Things To Know When Starting or Running a Basketball Rec League

Playing ball is fun, but organizing and running a basketball rec league takes work. Check out our pointers and questions to consider below for guidance on running your league. We hope this information will help you find time to enjoy the game itself – and your new community of players.

1. What types of players do you want and what’s your goal?

These questions are a good starting place because your answers will help determine many other things, such as the venue and its availability, schedule/hours, program size, and staff.

Several young men dribble a basketball outside on a court during their rec league basketball game.

  • Is it for youth to offer another opportunity for practice or just for an after-school activity?
  • Is it a recreational basketball league for adults, and will play be competitive or casual?
  • Do you want to offer a basketball camp or tournament, and for whom?
  • Do you want to work with or fit into an established league?

You’ll also want to choose for-profit or non-profit status.

2. Where do you want to play?

Your answers to the first question will help determine an appropriate location and find an available match.

  • Are you looking for an indoor place for the afternoons during the school year?
  • Are you seeking an outside court on summer weekends for pick-up games?
  • Do you need a venue available year-round for adults in the evening?

You’ll also need to decide if your locations have the necessary equipment, such as scoreboards, hoops and basketballs.

3. How many teams will you have?

You’ll want to form a schedule around teams, keeping in mind:

  • Program goals (education, skills development, casual play)
  • Team size
  • Number of teams needed for your goals

Additionally, consider whether you’ll select the teams, if there will be a draft or if players form their own teams.

4.What types of rules and procedures do you need, and do you need a committee or board?

  • Consult a basketball rule book and implement rules matching your league’s goals.
  • Establish bylaws or procedures to address complaints (such as filing a complaint against a ref).
  • Depending on the league’s size, you may want to form a committee of interested volunteers to help with planning and decision-
  • making.Determine payment and refund policies.

5.What kind of clothing or equipment do you need?

  • Team pinnies or casual?
  • Basketballs and rosin?
  • First aid supplies and water?

6. What kind of staff do you need?

The complexity and size of the program will help determine staff needed.

  • Are you a non-profit staffed by volunteers?
  • Or, is this a business? If so, do you need to hire people to run different parts of the program, such as referees, coaches, scorers and administrators?

7. What kind of insurance or licensing do you need?

You want to protect yourself and the program from financial risk, while ensuring that you comply with regulations and codes.

  • Your chosen venue may require certain insurance coverage for damages and liabilities.
  • Running the program itself carries risks that insurance can protect against.
  • Sports accident insurance can help protect you and the players from medical expenses if someone is injured.
  • Check if there are any local or state codes you need to follow and if you need to establish yourself as for-profit or non-profit.

8. What kind of marketing do you need?

You need to plan how you are going to attract players.

  • Is it more casual, such as word of mouth, putting up tear-offs, hanging tear-offs, or dropping brochures at schools, gyms and other places?
  • Are you planning on using social media?
    • You’ll need to establish social media accounts and write posts.
  • You’ll need to develop a website about your program to use as a tool for online registration and payment.

9. How much will it cost?

Even if you’re a non-profit league with volunteers, there will be some costs to run the program that will require donations or fees. Consider these costs:

  • Uniforms
    • Will the participant pay for them, or is it included in the fee?
  • Renting the facility
  • Referees, coaches, scorers, and equipment purchases or rental
  • Insurance premiums and licenses
  • Marketing
  • Staff (if not volunteers)

A-G Helps Protect Your Rec League Basketball Program from Accident Risk

Whether it’s a recreational basketball league for adults or an after-school program for kids, these 9 steps will help get your basketball rec league started. But it only takes 1 step with A-G Specialty Insurance to protect your program from the financial risks of injury from accidents.

A-G offers affordable sports accident insurance options that can protect your program from financial repercussions should one of your players, staff, or volunteers be injured while also protecting against out-of-pocket medical expenses. A-G is a leader in the sports insurance industry, with nearly 40 years of experience protecting programs just like yours.

Would you like to speak to A-G about accident insurance for your rec league basketball program? Take this step to request a quote here. We look forward to answering your questions and learning more about your program.

For more information on recreational basketball leagues for adults or rec leagues in general, check out The Best Way to Protect an Adult Sports League When Accidents Happen.


A-G has the experience to offer the best custom coverage for every program and the best customer service to ensure a worry-free process for every claim. The nation’s most competitive K-12, collegiate and youth programs Achieve Greatness with A-G!

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