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NATIONAL SPORT ORGANIZATION (NSO)
aka National Sport Federation (NSF)

(Note there is one for almost every sport)

What you need to know

A sportís NSO:

  • Selects and operates the National Team(s)
  • Operates national competitions and Canadian major international events
  • Does fundraising for the sport
  • Selects teams for all international competition
  • Provides overall sport management including nominations to Sport Canada for funding
  • May have Athlete Representatives who sit on Board of Directors

A National Sport Organization (NSO) (sometimes referred to as a National Sport Federation Ė NSF) is the national governing body for a given sport in Canada. NSO members are the Provincial Sport Organizations and high performance athletes in their program. Most NSOs are professionally managed organizations now but there are still some that are run primarily by devoted volunteers off the corner of their kitchen tables.

What an NSO does

  • Governs all aspects of a sport within the country
  • Oversees the activities of and sets policy for its membership (may be Provincial Sport Organizations, individual athletes, coaches or others)
  • Represents Canada and the sportís national interests to the International Sport Federation
  • Provides a link between the International Sport Federation and their members
  • Selects and manages their National Teams (High Performance Programs)
  • Manages marketing and sponsorship activities for the sport
  • Sanctions national level competitions/tournaments
  • Implements nation-wide initiatives to further develop and promote the sport
  • Establishes policies that cover the actions of the NSO
  • Provides professional development for coaches and officials
  • Puts forward bids to host major international competitions/tournaments; supports any hosting opportunities

Within the High Performance Program

Each NSO must manage their high performance program. This program revolves around the National Teams and includes all aspects of management, coaching, hiring, team selection and can include:

  • Hiring coaching staff
  • Supervising and monitoring activities of High Performance Program Staff
  • Selecting athletes to the National Team(s)
  • Selecting athletes for multi-sport games
  • Negotiating with other sport organizations for support
  • Nominating athletes, then negotiating with Sport Canada for Athlete Assistance Program funding
  • Communicating with other national and multi-sport organizations on issues relating to their athletes (such as provision of team lists to Canadian Sport Centres)
  • Dealing with any athlete appeals regarding selection, carding or other sport specific issues
  • The purchase and provision of insurance coverage for its high performance athletes and coaching staff

Athletes should know that all decisions regarding athletes (team selection, Sport Canada funding) made by the NSO must be supported by policies that are public domain. Athletes can request these policies and should be familiar with the protocols.

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