Governing bodies of sport

Governing bodies are an essential element of Scottish sport, and one that sportscotland recognises and values. For further information on sportscotland’s work with governing bodies and investment figures please see our Annual Report.

A Scottish Governing Body (SGB) (National Governing Body (NGB in England, Northern Ireland and Wales) is an organisation that governs and administers a sport on a national basis, whether that is for the whole of the United Kingdom (i.e. England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales), for Great Britain (i.e. England, Scotland and Wales) or for one of the Home Countries individually. An NGB operating in Northern Ireland may operate on an All-Ireland or Ulster Provincial basis. Traditionally SGBs are described as the custodians and guardians of their sport.

A SGB would be expected to deliver the following functions within its area of jurisdiction:

  • Control and regulate the environment of its sport;
  • Administer the practice and participation of its sport;
  • Develop its sport;
  • Influence both members and organisations of which it is a member.
  • To be able to deliver the functions a recognised NGB is likely to undertake the following activities:
  • Prepare and implement a vision and strategic plan for its sport and determine how it will be implemented nationally, regionally and locally;
  • Promote its sport;
  • Manage the rules and regulations of its sport, including anti-doping, child protection and equality;
  • Implement a governance framework for its sport;
  • Administer officials of its sport;
  • Establish and maintain links with the UK/Ireland and the international governing body / federation;
  • Encourage and grow participation;
  • Develop coaches, athletes, officials and participants;
  • Organise and host competitions.
Date published: 2 August 2023
Date updated: 2 August 2023


Your feedback will help us to improve this site. Please don't provide any personal information.  Feedback form

Enquiries should be submitted using by email to