Legislation of Sporting Events

4th December 2019
Do you know about the laws that govern sporting events? In this article, we'll briefly explain the laws in Spain on the planning and development of sporting events.

The organization of sporting events can be more painstaking than we may imagine, especially when it comes to professional events. In addition to the effort that it takes to coordinate teams, it’s also important to be aware of the legislation of sports events in each country or region.

In the case of competitions that occur abroad, international or local legislation has to be taken into account.

The objectives of each sporting event

The first step to take when planning and organizing a sporting event is to define the general and specific objectives of the competition to be held. In general, sporting events usually have the following key objectives:

  • Reaching a high level of competition: most major sporting events are carried out with this objective. In addition to ensuring an excellent level of play, the events are held to establish new parameters in the specific sport. These events are also intended to offer the public a spectacle to remember.
  • Promoting or developing the sport: here there’s both a social objective and an objective to increase the level of competition at a local or national level.
  • To awaken the interest of the population for certain sports: the objective is to stimulate physical activity and the growth and improvement of athletes in certain disciplines.
  • Stimulate sports: this objective is used to fulfill the social function of sports. The goal is to encourage the general population to adopt a healthier lifestyle by incorporating physical activity into their routines. This helps to combat sedentary lifestyles and many associated diseases.
Women running

  • Offer an excellent show: in these competitions, the emphasis is placed on entertainment. Therefore, another objective is to offer the public a spectacular experience that they’d like to experience again and to bring new followers to the discipline.
  • To benefit entities or institutions outside of the sport: sporting events are sometimes carried out to collect donations or to seek collaboration for institutions and entities that fulfill social functions.

Legislation of sporting events: the sports law

The current sports law signed on the 15th of October 1990, is the main regulatory instrument for the organization of sporting events in Spain. In article 46 of the law, a detailed classification of competitions is established. This legislation is essential when it comes to determining the regulations that are necessary for its implementation.

According to the Spanish sports law, sporting events can be classified according to the following parameters. 

  • Nature: sports events here are divided into professional or non-professional, as well as official or unofficial.
  • Scope: this determines if the competition is national, international, state or regional.

According to current regulations, sporting events must be classified before the Higher Sports Council.

Article 46 also determines that the organization of sporting events can be carried out by individuals or legal entities. These entities can be from the public or private sphere. Spanish sports associations can also be in charge of organizing events.

Children playing football

The fight against violence in sporting events

When conducting sporting events, it’s important to know about the regulations that are in place to ensure safety. 

The law 19/2007 is used to fight against violence, racism, xenophobia, and intolerance in sports. Its text establishes the sanctions applicable to any violence that occurs at sports venues. Organizers are responsible for identifying, preventing and controlling violent acts.

Finally, it’s important to clarify that the introduction, sale, and consumption of alcoholic beverages is strictly prohibited. This rule was established in article 67.3 of Spain’s sports law. The application of this regulation is considered to be essential to prevent accidents and violence during sporting events.

  • Ley 19/2007, de 11 de julio, contra la violencia, el racismo, la xenofobia y la intolerancia en el deporte. Extraído de: https://www.boe.es/buscar/doc.php?id=BOE-A-2007-13408
  • Ley 10/1990, de 15 de octubre, del Deporte. Extraído de: https://www.boe.es/buscar/pdf/1990/BOE-A-1990-25037-consolidado.pdf