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Youth Membership

We Support Youth Membership

Our club welcomes any junior (aka youth) member 12 to 17 years of age:

  • who takes one of SAPC's beginners lessons  OR knows an existing SAPC Regular member who can vouch for their ability to play at a 2.0 level or higher, and
  • who is always accompanied at SAPC activities by a pre-authorized Responsible Adult who:
    • will vigilantly monitor and ensure the youth member's safety from physical harm, sexual abuse and mental harm,
    • coaches the youth in court etiquette and discipline if warranted, and 
    • can authorize emergency medical treatment if needed.

Why Do We Support Youth Membership?

  • Many of us want to play with our kids, our grandchildren, and our nieces and nephews.
  • We have a vision of helping to create a healthy community through pickleball play, recognizing pickleball as a wholesome way to meet and interact with people. We also have a published value of inclusiveness. We must include youth to proudly and completely live up to our vision and our values.
  • We love teaching kids and adults to play.
  • We depend on the City of St. Albert and its schools for many of our venues. Continued access to these venues requires we support and nurture our youth. 
  • We want to continue building a club we can leave as a legacy to future generations, and we know that building that legacy starts with the engagement of our youth.

How Does it Work?

  • A Youth member may play at any SAPC session commensurate with their skill level that is not designated "Regular (adult) members only" in the SAPC play calendar. (And yes, some sessions including those during normal school hours will be designated "Regular (adult) members only.")
  • A Youth member may have one or more Responsible Adults (RAs), allowing the RA role to be shared by more than one adult.
  • To be an authorized RA, an RA form must be completed and signed by the RA and SAPC's Director of Membership and Volunteers.
  • If an RA is not a parent or guardian of the youth, then a Delegation of Parental Responsibility Form must also be completed. On this form, a parent or guardian designates an RA to act on their behalf.
  • RAs must carry a copy of their RA form whenever acting as an RA. If not a parent or guardian, they must also carry a copy of the parental delegation form. 
  • Forms must be shown to venue captains upon request.

Why This Approach

It is incumbent upon all sports organizations to protect youth from sexual abuse and any physical or mental harm. Some large organizations do this by having coaches and other volunteers take special courses and pass criminal records checks and by putting many other rules and checks in place.  Some organizations also limit contact between adults and youth, ensuring youth only play sports with other youth.  These approaches are not feasible for a local pickleball club with low fees run entirely by volunteers. This leaves us with only two choices: ban youth members indefinitely or find some other way of protecting our youth. We have found that other way.

We know the application process is a long one  -- but the safety of our youth is vital - they deserve our extra care and attention.

Youth Membership Application Process

  1. Prospective Youth Member (PYM) joins Pickleball Canada and Pickleball Alberta using the same process as regular (adult) member. This process is summarized on our Join page, and more details are provided here.
  2. PYM either: (a) takes an SAPC Introductory lesson (if/when available), noting the full name of the SAPC Trainer and date of lesson, or (b) knows an SAPC member who can vouch for their ability to play at a 2.0 level or higher and who has knowledge of the PYM's ability to keep score, play a position and display court etiquette.
  3. PYM finds one or more Responsible Adults (RAs) who will attend SAPC play sessions with them.
  4. PYM presses JOIN and completes the Youth member application web pages online but does NOT yet pay the membership fee. (Complete the pages preceding the final payment page, then press Cancel on the payment page, without paying. The PYM will receive an invoice by email advising that the membership is pending. The invoice will be paid in the second-last step below.)
  5. PYM has each RA complete a printed RA form, and where needed, has their parent/guardian and RA complete a printed Delegation of Parental Responsibility form. PYM submits signed forms to our Director of Membership and Volunteers (DMV) by: (a) scanning each form into a pdf document and emailing these documents to the DMV at , (b) mailing the forms to the DMV at the mailing address noted on the club’s website Contacts page, or (c) contacting the DMV and arranging personal delivery of the forms.
  6. DMV reviews pending application for completeness, and verifies PYM’s playing competency and court etiquette by contacting the trainer or the vouching SAPC member.
  7. DMV reviews the application and either: (a) finds all conditions are met, (b) informs PYM of application deficiencies, or (c) refers the application to the SAPC board if there are special circumstances not covered by current policy or procedures.
  8. When all conditions are met, DMV: (a) signs RA and Delegation of Parental Responsibility forms and returns copies to the PYM or parent/guardian/lead RA, (b) files originals with club Secretary or in the club’s information repository, and (c) advises the PYM to complete their application by paying their membership fee online.
  9. PYM or parent/guardian makes an online payment covering their membership fee. (Go to your online membership profile to pay the invoice generated by step 3.)
  10. DMV approves the youth membership online. (When this happens, the youth member will see their membership status change online from pending to active.)
  11. Youth member should print their membership card or be prepared to display their membership card using their smartphone if requested by a captain.


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