More on the SFMA

Editor's Note: This story is a continuation of the In Service story appearing in our April issue. To read the In Service story, visit Scoring Goals With the Sports Field Management Association.

The newly rebranded Sports Field Management Association (SFMA) is ideal for those who take part in ensuring sports fields at all levels of play are safe and playable, said President of the Board James Bergdoll, CSFM, CPRP, director of park maintenance for the City of Chattanooga, Tenn.

"In a lot of cases, it takes many people at many levels and skills to provide these safe surfaces," he said. "The more people that are involved and have access to the education and information we offer, the better off all sports fields will be."

SFMA sees education and training of sports field managers as central to its mission, with the Certified Sports Field Manager (CSFM) certification helping to test and validate the knowledge of professionals in the field. The association has also released a couple of new programs over the past two years to help even more."One is an online Certificate program called Sports Field Management 101," Bergdoll said. "This free, self-paced training provides continuing education opportunities for anyone who has not been formally educated in turfgrass science and is interested in entering the industry.

"Completing the course will build a solid foundation in the science and practices of turfgrass management so students can successfully care for a turfgrass surface and be prepared to enter a position in sports field management," he added. "Those who complete the course can be hired for seasonal and crew assistance at sports facilities."

Those who successfully complete Sports Field Management 101 earn a Certificate of Completion, which can be printed out and shown to potential employers.

The second program is the development of Best Management Practices, Bergdoll said. "Best Management Practices for the Sports Field Manager: A Professional Guide for Sports Field Management, serves as a comprehensive compilation of environmental best practices for SFMA members and non-members, equipping them with the tools and resources to document solid environmental practices for legislators, regulators, employers and community constituents. Although members have been following excellent practices, this program validates those and positions the sports field manager as a strong steward of the environment, which will aid in educating decision-makers."

To learn more about the SFMA and the various educational and networking programs available for sports field managers and other stakeholders who ensure sports fields are safe for play, visit