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How to create a smokefree sporting club

This section provides information and guidelines to develop and implement a totally smokefree policy for sporting clubs.

Assess the current situation

It is important to consider the current situation, and how sporting club members and participants feel about going completely smokefree. You could ask for their suggestions at committee meetings and invite feedback on your proposal to become a smokefree club. This will help to assess the level of support in going smokefree and also any sources of resistance. You can even circulate a short survey to members.

View a sample club survey: The sample survey can be used to find out the opinions of club members before implementing a smokefree policy

Develop a smokefree policy and gain support from the committee

Developing a good smokefree policy requires providing information to members, considering feedback, and discussing the policy at the next committee meeting. This will help inform the decision about whether to go smokefree. It is important to ensure the committee supports the decision and identifies champions for the implementation of the policy. When developing the policy, remember to include their obligations to comply with existing legislation.

Finally, consider a compliance strategy to ensure everyone knows what is expected of them. A compliance strategy should outline strategies to assist people to follow the policy. You can include: asking people if they are aware of the bans, informing them where they can smoke and informing them of the reasons for the ban.

View the Sample smokefree policy for meeting existing legislation. This policy template can be used to ensure sporting clubs meet the existing minimum requirements for smokefree areas under the current legislation.

View the Sample smokefree policy for a completely smokefree sporting club. This policy template can be used to bring in a completely smokefree policy at sporting clubs; anyone who wishes to smoke will have to leave the premises

View how to approach non-compliance. This section explains some strategies for dealing with people who may continue to smoke in smokefree areas

Communicate the policy

Notify all club members, as well as its league / association and other local clubs of the new policy and the date it comes into effect. Remember that other people from outside the club will need to abide by the new policy and they will need to know about it. Promote the new policy to local media and community groups, like schools and kindergartens. This is a great way to be a leader in your community and show other clubs they can make the same positive changes.

View a sample communication text. This document contains templates for use by clubs to develop communication explaining their smokefree policy

Install signage

Install signage in places where people currently smoke and where it is visible. Ensure there is some signage at the entrance of the ground and include some resources for people who may be interested in quitting themselves. Make sure all signage and resources are in place before the start of the new policy so people will be prepared for the change.

Resources available from the Department of Health

In Victoria, signs, posters and booklets can be ordered via an online order form on the Victorian Department of Health’s Tobacco Reforms website. Fact sheets are also available in Arabic, Chinese and Vietnamese.

No smoking or vaping signs can be ordered by emailing

If clubs wish to implement their own total ban on smoking, a standard no smoking sign (without reference to the Tobacco Act 1987 and 'penalties may apply') in a Word or PDF format is available by contacting

Children’s area specific resources including signs, brochures, posters, palm cards and fact sheets are also available for download on the Victorian Department of Health’s Tobacco Reforms website. Fact sheets are also available in Simplified Chinese, Arabic, Dari, Karen and Vietnamese.

If you are from another state or territory, please seek localised advice on where to source such resources. You can also find some brochures, posters, palm cards and fact sheets via our resource order form.


Consider if the policy and implementation has been a success. If you need to change anything or go back to one of the earlier steps, then do so and make sure the progress of the policy is communicated to club members.

For more information, view our comprehensive Going Smokefree: A Guide for Sporting Clubs and Smokefree sports implementation framework.

This content is taken from Victorian sources. While it could be applied to all Australian States and Territories, to ensure accuracy we recommend consulting with localised advice. 

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