Grassroot and Elite Sports

Outdoor organised sport is allowed for children and adults. Sports organisers are responsible for running training practices and games in a manner which decreases the transmission risk of coronavirus (COVID-19). The measures to use will depend on the environment and location in which the sports activity takes place. 

COVID-19 can be transmitted through three variables within sports activities, which means sport organisers must put measures in place against these variables:

  • Droplet transmission and aerosol generation – when exercising or playing a group sport there is a larger risk of transmission through closer contact of breath and sweat 
  • Fomite transmission – risk of contracting the virus from touching an infected surface
  • Population – with people traveling from different households and mixing when playing sport together or watching from the side lines, this increases the risk of transmission 

COVID-19 Legal Requirements

Sports organisers need to operate their training session or game in a way that protects their team/athlete and the spectators from the risk of contracting and spreading COVID-19. There are measures which sports organisers are legally obliged to have in place, these are as follows: 

  • The organiser must complete a COVID-19 risk assessment highlighting the potential risks and solutions for the training session or game which contribute to the spread of COVID-19. This must be written and shown to all staff on completion if you employ more than five staff. Grassroot and Elite Sport Risk assessment Template
  • Face coverings must be worn within all indoor spaces apart from when exercising and if exempt for a health reason. Use signage at the entrance to the building to inform players/athletes and spectators that they must wear a face covering when entering and moving round the premises (printable signage is available). Train staff/volunteers to advise players/athletes and spectators on wearing masks but only the police can enforce them, so staff/volunteers do not have to challenge those who won’t comply
  • Spectators in outdoor spaces must only watch with people from their household or comply with the rule of six depending on what regulations are in place at the time of the event 

Suggested COVID-19 measures

  • Stagger entrance times to the stadium or sports ground for spectators
  • Limit the number of spectators at events, if using seating block out seats between groups of ticket holders to allow for social distancing
  • Have hand sanitiser available throughout the venue including outdoor spaces
  • Provide staff/volunteers with appropriate PPE for use during training sessions and games
  • At food stands have; socially distanced queue markers, screens at till, encourage contactless payment, disposable cutlery and napkins and if possible separate order and pick up points
  • If possible utilise another area for additional changing facilities in order to limit the number of people within an enclosed space. Otherwise encourage players/athletes to arrive in their sportswear and then go home to shower and changed afterwards
  • Don’t share equipment in practise which requires players to touch it when using, if unavoidable sanitise all equipment after each practise and get players to use hand sanitiser regularly during practice
  • Regularly clean portable or indoor toilets throughout the day

For any further information please email your queries to us or visit GOV.UK.