We are proud to serve up highlights from the past year, which has been truly amazing thanks to the contribution of sponsors, supporters, volunteers, and all of the incredible women who participate in our league!
Throughout the 2017/18 season, we played, laughed, competed…and continued to grow in numbers!
Our Winter League included 32 teams who played 1120 matches and 4052 games in the regular season. Player participation grew by 14% and we welcomed 2 new clubs into the league: Metro YMCA and Granite Club. Fun Fact: 20% of all regular season games were won by ORC teams!
In its second season, E League player participation grew by an incredible 330% with many of the 129 players graduating quickly to D and a few to C! The program also grew. Drawing on the support of 17 clubs and 30 volunteers, we delivered 20 sessions of E league (10 per half season) and offered 23 clinics to women around Toronto & District.
Overall league participation grew by 49%!
The demand for squash uncovered through our Outreach Efforts was encouraging. Interest at the National Women’s Show doubled with 150 women signing up at our booth. Our subscriber list grew by 84% to 681 and we have attracted more than 200 followers on Instagram. We also shared our experiences with a group in Ottawa that is launching a beginner women’s league and worked closely with Squash Ontario to encourage more women to train as coaches.
Finally, we expanded our Programming significantly by running 7 events! These included 2 evenings that brought together D+E players to play, socialize and encourage participation in club teams. We also offered 3 one-day tournaments and 2 training events – an overnight playcation and a one-day training camp. Feedback from participants at these first forays into offering instructional events will be used to make next season’s programming even better!
Photo credit for many of the above images is due to Karen Galati of CrazyKPhotography.
2017/18 Post-Season Survey Player Feedback
Responses to our post-season survey led us to understand the following:
- Overall satisfaction improved (from 4.30 to 4.37 out of 5 stars) and will be a focus of continued improvement next year.
- One team was far stronger than the rest of the teams in their division. When this occurs, we need to explore ways in which the league can intervene respectfully to promote fair competition.
- The greatest sources of dissatisfaction at all levels were the quality of refereeing, lack of social component with some teams, and long gaps in the schedule.
- We will share information about “learn to ref” programs available in Toronto & District and, where possible, incorporate rules and refereeing sessions into our events.
- Whether it is courtside or apres squash, we will encourage that camaraderie be a focus of each night of play. Meeting new people, on and off court, is an important part of the T&D league experience.
- We are thrilled that women at all levels want to PLAY MORE SQUASH! Next season’s schedule will offer as much squash as possible given scheduling requirements and volunteer availability.
- A small pool of respondents each year requests that we restrict participation in the league based on age. The TDWSA has a zero tolerance policy towards age discrimination. Whatever age a player takes up squash, they are never too young or too old to participate in the league, provided they compete at an appropriate level, play fair, show respect towards others on and off court, and ensure a positive experience to visiting teams on nights that they host.
Goals for 2018/19
As a result of your feedback, we have established the following goals for next season:
- Overall Satisfaction: 4.5/5 stars
- Enhance E league training aspect while ensuring enough time each session for game play
- Aim for 4 zones (East, West, North, South) with minimum of 10-15 players in each
- Keep growing the league and women’s squash:
- Encourage all existing teams to come back in the fall
- Help E league graduates find home club teams to play on
- Offer a similar number of events, incorporating past-participant feedback
- Mix of training camps and tournaments that promote skills development and healthy competition, while strengthening our women’s squash community
- Marketing and promotional activities:
- Participate in and promote Women’s Squash Week events in September
- Participate in the National Women’s Show
- Run social media engagement and advertising campaign