Members of the public are being urged to stay local when taking part in outdoor non-contact sport following the recent decision to extend exercise guidelines as part of the Scottish Government’s route map out of Coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis
More than 20 Scottish Governing Bodies of sport (SGBs) and physical activity organisations have now published detailed guidance to help people enjoy sport outdoors as part of recreational activities while still adhering to public health guidelines.
The change to the guidelines has been widely welcomed with many people in communities across the country taking the opportunity to incorporate outdoor non-contact sport into their daily exercise and recreational activities at this time.
The guidance, which came into effect at the end of May includes detailed information on areas such as social distancing, access to facilities and health and safety. The key considerations of the new guidelines are as follows:
- Physically distance at all times (minimum of 2 metres)
- Stay local (around 5 miles)
- Mix with a maximum of 1 other household each day
- Meet in small groups (no more than 8 people at a time)
- Avoid sharing equipment
In a joint letter to SGBs and physical activity organisations Sports Minister Joe FitzPatrick and chair of sportscotland Mel Young have reminded participants that by staying local (around 5 miles) they are helping to reduce the spread of the virus.
The letter says: “As part of the guidance we recommended that people do not travel more than five miles for recreation, but we left some room for discretion so that people could go further to visit family.
"While the majority adhered to this guidance, there was some evidence of a minority not abiding by those guidelines and travelling significant distances unnecessarily.
“If people continue to make journeys which risk spreading the virus – we may have to put the restrictions on travel distance into law. This is something we do not want to do, but may have to if we think it is necessary for the collective safety and wellbeing of everyone.
“We have made significant progress in tackling Covid-19 but this is no irreversible. It requires us all to be responsible and adhere to the rules that are in place. If we all stick to these rules we are helping to surpress the virus.”