Spring has sprung, and as I write this, we’re only a few days into baseball season and my beloved Boston Red Sox are down two games to the Yankees. Fortunately, it is just the beginning of a very long season, and I’m sure my boys will end up on top in October. The start of baseball season also marks the start of another busy, exhausting and hopefully rewarding summer season for sports field managers at all levels.
Revisit your safety program and make any necessary changes. In the peak of summer, you cannot afford to be understaffed due to injury or illness. Remind your employees about the danger of heatstroke and sunstroke, and discuss the importance of staying hydrated, using sunscreen and being properly outfitted to protect against the strong summer sun. Ensure that every crew member is familiar with proper equipment operation and chemical application standards. Also, schedule regular equipment evaluations and maintenance to guarantee all mowers, trimmers, etc., are functioning properly. A healthy and able crew is your greatest asset, so take every opportunity to promote proper safety practices.
Encourage your staff to explore continuing education in sports field management, and set a good example by doing the same. Trends, products and techniques in field care are evolving every day, so stay up to date with a refresher course. There are a variety of classes, workshops, courses and degree programs that offer night classes or online options. See page 31 to learn more about some of the many educational opportunities available.
Another great outlet for industry information is your peers in the field. If you haven’t already, register for free at our online forum, SportsFieldSite.com. Log on to ask questions, offer suggestions and share stories with other sports field managers across the country. Having access to communicate with other people who are facing the same problems as you is an invaluable resource, and a great way to pick up some new tips and techniques.
Good luck with the busy season ahead, may it be your best and most successful yet!