FAQs for state sporting associations, clubs and recreation organisations
The following FAQs are in place from 11:59pm Sunday 31 May 2020.
When will indoor sport and recreation centres open?
- Under the proposed plan, from 11.59pm on 21 June, indoor physical recreation venues, including sports centres, gyms, health clubs and fitness studios may re-open. State Sporting Associations are working with facility owners and operators to prepare and update their return to play plans. Guidelines to help SSA’s and indoor physical recreation facility owners and operators to reopen will be updated prior to this next stage.
When will swimming pools reopen?
- From 11.59pm on 31 May, indoor and outdoor swimming pools can open to a maximum of 20 patrons per separate enclosed space and a limit of 3 people per lane in each pool.
- Patrons should shower at home prior to swimming and physical distancing applies to all non-water parts of pool facilities.
- Check with your local council to find out if your swimming pool is open, the hours of operation and the processes your local council has in place to protect your health and safety.
Will swimming lessons for children also be allowed?
- Yes – swimming lessons can go ahead provided there is no more than 3 people per lane in the pool. The four square metre rule applies to the publicly accessible area excluding the pool.
Can a sporting club reopen its canteen or dining room within a club house?
- Sporting clubs that operate a restaurant, café or canteen within its facility may reopen with take-away and limited dine-in arrangements from 11.59pm on 31 May, provided it strictly adheres to the restrictions on hospitality venues including only 20 patrons per enclosed space subject to the four square metre rule.
- Detailed guidelines of the requirements for cafes, restaurants and food and drink facilities to reopen are now available on the Business Victoria website.
Why can’t competition resume now that restrictions are starting to lift?
- The Victorian Government is taking a phased approach to resuming community sport and recreation. This approach will ensure the safety of participants and the broader community.
Can multiple groups train at the same outdoor facility, such as a football oval or basketball court?
- From 11.59pm 31 May, up to 20 people can participate in outdoor group sport and exercise activities.
- Where an outdoor facility has sufficient space to comply effectively with the Chief Health Officer directions (e.g. multiple ovals, courts, lawns or fields), more than one group can be accommodated on the condition that:
- Groups do not operate closely to each other (e.g. one group per basketball court, lawn bowls green, while larger playing surfaces e.g. football oval or soccer pitch, can be split into two zones)
- The facility can ensure that catering to multiple groups does not create an unnecessary risk of people congregating (e.g. at entrances or exits, near toilets or in carparks or other nearby areas)
- Physical distancing and restrictions on gatherings can be effectively managed during all periods before, during and after training or the activity.
- Groups should not mix with each other and should remain constant, with participants avoiding swapping between groups.
- It is advised to establish a “zone” for your group to train within and ensure the zone is clearly marked, to allow other groups to avoid any unnecessary contact.
How come high performance and professional sports are resuming full contact training but we can’t?
- The Victorian Government is supporting high performance and professional sport to return to play and return to their place of work.
- High performance and professional sports are operating under stringent conditions and can only resume once they have a coronavirus (COVID-19) risk management and community safety plan in place that outlines how they will manage the risks associated with coronavirus (COVID-19).
- High performance and professional sporting organisations have a duty of care to ensure that these venues are safe for their sporting staff. This includes player management, travel, testing and the use of the facilities and equipment. The oversight of professional codes means occupational risks are carefully managed.
Why are some sports resuming and others only partially?
- Indoor and physical contact sports will take longer to resume, because of the increased risk they present of spreading coronavirus (COVID-19).
- Training for community sports can resume, but only in a modified way with no contact, with restrictions on the number of people trainnig, physical distancing of 1.5 metres, and conditions on shared equipment.
Where can indoor sports find an outdoor space for training?
- Clubs that usually train indoors should contact their SSA or local council to discuss alternative outdoor training facilities that could be used temporarily.
Can parents/guardians attend training?
- Parents and guardians taking children to and from training activities are required to follow the Victorian Chief Health Officers’ Directions for public gatherings and maintain physical distancing of 1.5 metres.
- Parents or other people are required to keep a reasonable distance from groups in an outdoor setting or will be included in the group of 20.
- Parents and guardians that remain with their children during participation in sport, will be considered part of the group of up to 20 people, unless they are formally coaching or instructing the activity.
- The number of coaches or instructors onsite needs to be the minimum necessary required to conduct the activity.
- People failing to observe public gathering restrictions risk being issued an on the spot fine by Victoria Police.
- Sport and Recreation Victoria is providing State Sporting Associations (SSAs) with support to develop their return to play plans, which contain guidance and protocols to ensure safety of participants and parents to minimise the risks of transmission.
Why do operators of a physical recreation facility used predominantly for indoor physical recreation (such as a gym, health club or fitness centre) or a personal training facility need to keep records of people attending training outdoors?
- Recording details enables health authorities to quickly trace anyone that may have come into contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19).
- It is up to the operator of the indoor training facility or a personal training facility to determine how to best keep the records. However, a simple log book would be sufficient, noting that only first names, phone numbers and time and date are required.
- Operators of physical recreation facilities that are used predominantly for outdoor physical recreation (e.g. football oval, soccer pitch, outdoor netball and basketball courts) are not required to manage the recording of the first names and phone numbers of people attending training.
FAQs for participants and spectators
The following FAQs are in place from 11:59pm Sunday 31 May 2020.
What steps are in place to keep me safe?
- Sport and Recreation Victoria has published new guidance to support SSAs and peak bodies to develop their own return to play plans and risk mitigation strategies which their clubs can use.
- A full list of activities is now available.
What can I do to make sure I play safely?
- We all have a responsibility to make sure our return to play is safe and a success. That means we all need to practice some basic health and hygiene measures to protect ourselves, and our friends.
- Participants will be encouraged to bring their own equipment and limit sharing. For example, this could include golf players marking their own card, participants only using their own racquets, and minimising shared exercise equipment (e.g. tires and ropes or scrum machines) and not sharing uniforms (e.g. hockey goalkeeper gear).
- Participants should wash their hands before and after training or use alcohol-based hand sanitiser with over 60% alcohol, and equipment with a smooth surface can be wiped with sanitiser before and after each session.
- When it comes to going to your local park, use your common sense. If you think it is looking a little crowded, go to another park.
Can we use the club changerooms before and after training?
- No. Communal indoor facilities, such as showers and change rooms, will remain closed with the exception of allowing access to toilets.
- Sport and recreation bodies and clubs should ensure participants arrive dressed and ready to train and are equipped to manage the conditions without access to the clubrooms.
Why can’t spectators attend training?
- To slow the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) and protect community safety, spectators are not allowed to attend sports training. Only people with an essential role in conducting the training should attend.
We know that getting back on the field or court means so much to so many Victorians. Here’s an overview of the current restrictions for community sport and recreation and how your club or organisation can plan to return to play.