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15 August 2019

Sports activities: What will the NDIS fund?

Being both physically and socially active through playing a sport can provide great benefits to your health, regardless of your age or ability.

Time spent socialising and exercising is important for everyone’s health, both physically and mentally, yet many Australians don’t do enough. Participating in sporting activities is an excellent way to get started on your journey to being more active and social.

If you’re coming up to your NDIS Plan meeting or Plan Review and playing a sport or joining a sports team is one of your goals, here are some things to think about to make sure you’re prepared.

Set your goals.

When you’re setting your goals, it’s important to keep going back to the big questions and make sure you’re answering them each step of the way. Think about where you want to go in life, what you’d like to achieve and what is stopping you from achieving them.

If your goals include participating more in your community, making new friendships, improving your health or learning a new skill, then joining a sports team may help you achieve these goals.

Not only will you have the opportunity to learn new physical skills and benefit from more movement, you’ll also have the chance to make new friends and social connections in your community.

Remember – the NDIS will only fund goods and services which will assist sport activities if you have identified these needs in your NDIS planned goals, which makes it even more important to be prepared for your NDIS Plan meeting.

Make sure you get our handy Pre-planning checklist before you start.

Sports activities fall under two support categories: Capacity Building and Core supports:

  • Increased Social and Community Participation is a Capacity Building support, meaning your participation will help you to build your skills and independence. These supports need to clearly link back to the goals you have listed in your NDIS Plan.
  • Assistance with Social and Community Participation is a Core support. This category is a lot more flexible, can fund a wide range of activities and include a support person or translator in addition to the support you need to participate.

What will the NDIS cover?

In your pre-planning, choose a sporting organisation and think about how participating in the sport relates to the goals you set out in your Plan.

Funded supports may include:

  • Special equipment or ‘assistive technology’ that you will need for participation (read our previous article FAQs: The NDIS and assistive technology.)
  • Transport to and from your training
  • Additional support required for your participation, including help to take medication, use the bathroom or have a support worker come with you.

If it is deemed ‘reasonable and necessary’ for your wellbeing and if the sport helps you to achieve your goals, then the NDIS may approve your funding.

So, what’s next?

Choose your sport and sports club.

Once you’ve set your goals, it’s time to choose your sport and find the right organisation. With so many options out there, it can be hard to choose where to start.

Many sporting organisations are registered with the NDIS, but you might also be able to access non-registered organisations with your funding too. Be sure to ask your plan manager if it is possible in your case.

Organise your sporting equipment.

Funding could also be available to help cover the cost of any specialised equipment that you need to play your chosen sport.

If you can buy the equipment off the shelf and modify it to suit your needs, the NDIS may cover the cost of the modifications.

If you need more complex equipment or assistive technology for your sporting participation, you will need to get it from a specialist disability supplier. You might be able to get funding for this, however you will need to confirm your need for the product and its suitability through an assessment by an occupational therapist.

We can help.

If participating in sports is one of your goals the Leap in! Crew can help.

The Leap in! mobile app (and new web app) has a dedicated section for setting and managing goals which will make preparing for your NDIS Plan meeting or Plan Review easier.

If you would like to find out more, call the Leap in! Crew on 1300 05 78 78, email or sign up to Leap in! plan management today.

Further reading.

Being active for health and wellbeing.

NDIS budget categories: Improved Health & Wellbeing.

Riding for the Disabled: How can it help?