Project Description

Covid-19 information for university taekwondo clubs

Restrictions on the practice of sport due to coronavirus (COVID-19) will vary by home nation and by university, and may be relaxed or tightened at short notice. We advise university club captains and members check this page regularly, and follow the relevant guidance from the UK Government and regional sports councils.

From Saturday 25 July, indoor facilities such as gyms, leisure centres and pools will be allowed to reopen in England, provided operators follow government guidelines – but many universities will not be reopening their facilities until a later date. Participants and activity providers should be aware of local restrictions as these may differ from national guidance.

Each university/ venue is empowered to make their own decisions about when their facilities are ready, so it is critical for club committees to speak with their students’ union/ sport department liaison regularly to discuss the latest local guidance regarding: (i) the use of your institution’s facilities, (ii) return to sport preparations for your university club members, and (iii) your obligations to the club’s employees and volunteers (including staff, contracted coaches, volunteer coaches/ assistants, and other club volunteers).

These pages will be updated in the coming days and weeks with further detailed information and guidance for university club committees and members.

In England, from Saturday 25 July, indoor facilities such as gyms, leisure centres and pools will be allowed to reopen, provided operators follow specific government guidelines they can host larger groups. This is also the case for events in public outdoor spaces that are organised by businesse, charitable or political organisations, and public bodies, provided they take reasonable steps to mitigate the risk of transmission, in line with COVID-19 Secure guidance and including completion of a risk assessment. Any other gathering in an outdoor space must not be any larger than 30 people. For the facilities that are now allowed to open, each venue, including council-owned sports facilities, will make their own decisions about when their facilities are ready to open and can be operated safely.

In Scotland, you can participate in outdoor non-contact sports on your own, with members of your own household and with members of your own household and with members of four other households. Groups should contain no more than fifteen people, but less if possible. (Two other households and maximum group of eight if you or anyone else in the group is shielding.) When participating with people from outside your household you must maintain 2 meters physical distance from them at all times. You should not meet people from more than four other households each day, for any reason (or two other household if you are shielding). Organised adult sports activity such as competition and formal club activity involving people from more than four households are not permitted at this time.

In Wales, you must play sport or exercise alone, with members of your household or your extended household if you have formed one, and/or with members of one other household or extended household, other than as part of an organised group. Organised outdoor activities, including team sports and classes, involving up to 30 people are allowed to take place. The activity must be outdoors and organised by a business, a public body or charitable institution, a club, or the national governing body of sport or other activity. The person organising the activity needs to have carried out an appropriate risk assessment.

In Northern Ireland, outdoor activities in general are now permitted, subject to social distancing being maintained. Indoor sports and leisure centres are permitted to open from 24 July, and the 30 person limit does apply to gatherings relating to indoor sports. The organiser must have carried out a risk assessment which meets the requirement of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2000 and take all reasonable measures to limit the risk of transmission of the coronavirus.

In all regions, you should not participate in any indoor or outdoor exercise or activity if you are self-isolating.

*the above shows a brief overview of current advice and on the date indicated only – in all cases you should refer to the UK and regional governments primary sources for the very latest legislation updates and advice in full.

Northern Ireland
Outdoor sports courts open from 10 May for small groups. Outdoor pools open from 11 July.
Open from 29 June.
Open from 22 June.
Open from 8 June.
Indoor gyms, swimming pools and sports facilities to reopen from 25 July.
To open in phase 3.
To open in amber phase – for small groups only.
Indoor gyms to open from 10 July. Swimming pools to reopen from 24 July. Other indoor sports courts to open from 7 August.
Elite athletes are permitted to start training from 1 June
Professional sport can resume from 22 June.
Elite athletes to resume some activity from 22 June.
Training facilities for elite athletes open from 15 June.
Live sport permitted ‘behind closed doors’ from 1 June. Expected to bring back audiences from 1 October.
Professional sport resumes ‘behind-closed doors’ on 22 June. Expected to open to spectators with restricted numbers in phase 3.
Outdoor events ‘behind-closed doors’ with without spectators for broadcast permitted . All events to resume in green phase.
Resumption of competitive live sport ‘behind-closed doors’ with limited spectators from 24 July.
Depending on your role in your club you will need to be aware different elements of this guidance in full, but we recommend all club members take a look at this information so they are aware of the process and steps being taken to keep everyone safe as we return to training.

  • Rules will vary by institution – each institution will define their own regulations for the return of university sport within the regional government and local authority’s legal framework, and based on their specific requirements, resources and circumstances. Please be aware that the timeline for opening or restricting of activities may vary between institutions.

  • Club members – please stay aware of the current regulations for university club training issued by your institution’s SU/ Sport department, and read the updates from your club captain and committee! Have fun and please help support your institution, club committee, coaches, volunteers and each other.

  • Club captain and committees – as your club’s governors and custodians there is an onus on club committee members to (i) stay aware of the current guidelines being issued by your institution and it’s SU/ Sport department with whom you share a duty of care to your club’s members, contracted coaches and volunteers, as well as towards other facility users and members of university/ SU staff. Furthermore, we recommended you (ii) stay aware of updates to the regional government and your local [in 2-tier areas: county councils; in single tier areas: the unitary county or district council; or London Borough Councils] authority’s current regulations on the practice of sport. Finally, we recommend committee members (iii) work in close consultation with your club’s contracted coaches and SU/ Sport department staff member(s) with all due diligence to protect the rights and safety of your members, staff, contractors, volunteers, and the general public.

  • Potential regulation conflicts – the current situation is highly dynamic and this could lead to conflicting, confusing or outdated information being identified by club committees. If you find conflicting regulations are provided to you by either your institution’s SU/ Sport department, regional or local government, or contracted coaching staff, then it is expected you raise any potential issues up to your SU/ Sport department and in the meantime follow the most stringent of the regulations provided, until such conflicts can be reviewed and clarified by your SU/ Sport department.

  • Coaches – contracted/ volunteer coaches please review and follow the guidelines provided by your SU/ Sport department for university club coaching, as well as guidance provided by your Public/ Products Liability and Professional [Instructor] Indemnity Insurance provider (e.g., a membership association & policy provider) where applicable. A university sport’s club members will have coverage provided by their institution’s SU/ Sport department member to member insurance policy, but this may or may not include coaching staff, who may be expected to hold a separate 3rd party indemnity policy (this may vary between institution and by the employment status of the coach). Where applicable, if you believe the guidelines for adapted delivery of sessions set out by your membership association & policy provider are materially more stringent than those being implemented by the institution’s SU/ Sport department for university sports clubs, you should raise such a disparity with your club committee/ SU/ Sports department employer, as it could impact your insurance cover.

  • Adapted session planning – the club captain, club head-coach and SU/ Sport department staff member(s) should jointly consult before your club’s sessions restart to define how those sessions will be adapted according to which phase of the return-to-sport timeline your institution has reached (note: the current phase can progress forwards and backwards depending on local regulations and circumstances). These include but are not limited to your: SU/ Sport department’s and venues’ current regulations and requirements; session locations; room capacity limits; training space partitions; physical contact limits (e.g., no contact within 2 m); equipment use and cleaning rules; and the range and types of training exercises that are permitted at a given stage (e.g., body weight fitness drills, technique and ‘shadow boxing’ drills, performing patterns, and other physically distanced exercises).

While social distancing rules are in place attending sessions may look a bit different for a while, but it’s important to stay positive and highlight that taekwondo sessions may take place when they can be adapted to enable social distancing and adherence to the government and your institution’s guidelines.

Here are some of the things you can expect to see and some of the things for you to consider when returning to university taekwondo:

  • (1) Club captains, first speak to your SU/ SD: each university and their designated facility manager/ SU/ Sport department staff member(s) will be able to advise at what stage they have reached in planning for the reopening of facilities, return of training for sports clubs, booking systems and communication of information to club committees, members, contracted coaches and volunteers. Each institution will make their own decisions based on their own particular circumstances, available capacity, resources and risk assessments – you may help by providing a proactive single point of contact (ideally the club captain) and by offering to provide some sport specific information if they invite it, but we strongly advise you do not attempt to accelerate/ decelerate their timeline by highlighting what a university down the road is doing, and please at all times follow the rules they have stipulated for your institution’s members.

  • (2) Booking ahead: university facilities are likely to require all participants individually book ahead online or by phone before attending sessions (or might delegate this to the club committee, or the contracted coach) – members you can help your club by booking early and updating them promptly if you can no longer make it!

  • (3) More limited availability: class sizes may be reduced, with participant limits based on your room size (and possibly lowered further based on total building capacity), so it may be useful to divide your longer sessions into shorter sub-periods to allow for multiple groups per session – this all ties in to both your facility/ club’s booking process and your flexibility in adapting your training sessions.

  • (4) Queuing for check-in: expect your university facilities to set up a socially distanced queuing system at busy times to register people coming into and out of the facility – leave some extra time before your session.

  • (5) Hand sanitiser and masks: use of sanitiser gel on entering and leaving the building will be required, and the wearing of masks when in the building before your session will either be advised or required – check in advance!

  • (6) Temperature checks: you may also be asked to take a temperature check before entering the building – leave a few minutes early if you were planning a hard sprint to training.

  • (7) One-way systems: depending on the layout of your university’s facilities there may be a one-way system in place to reach different halls, studios and gyms –  leave some extra time to allow for this.

  • (8) No bags/ small bags: with more limited space, and potentially no access to lockers, you may not be allowed to take any bag, or only be allowed a small draw-string bag into your sports facility – plan accordingly!

  • (9) The 5-minute changeover: there is likely to be a strict 5 or more-minute period before and after sessions to get in and get out efficiently – this will be enforced so that fewer people mix at the changeovers and the facility does not go over its capacity targets.

  • (10) Dress to train: changing facilities are likely to be closed at most venues for some time, so come dressed to train in freshly laundered sportswear/ uniform and bring a sweatshirt or jacket etc., to layer up after training – also ask your captain if uniform or footwear requirements have changed.

  • (11) Adapted training: your training session must be adapted to the level of distancing and permitted contact levels based on current government and regional (and local authority rules in the case of local lock-downs), and especially your own institution’s and SU/ sport department’s rules in the case these are more strict than the government minimum requirements – your institution has a duty of care and insurance and legal liabilities for university club members, staff and volunteers; help them by being prepared with a range of alternate session plans for various levels of social distancing.

  • (12) Individual training spaces: your institution and SU/ sport department/ facility manager will ultimately decide on capacity limits and training spaces, so you may well find specific floor marking for participants to stay within when exercising in halls, studios and gyms – captains will need to plan ahead and discuss with your SU/ Sports department and your contracted coaches/ volunteers what adaptations will be made to training sessions, so you will need to know the number and size of taped off training squares.

  • (13) Equipment use and cleaning: rules on equipment use may require captains to (i) advise your members to bring their own protective equipment and not to share with anyone (ideally each member will also bring their own basic mini-first aid kit too), (ii) discuss planning for training sessions that do not require the use any of your usual shared equipment, or (iii) plan for training sessions with limited permitted shared equipment and a well-defined cleaning regime for pre-session, when changing user, and post-session – we recommend planning different sessions for various equipment scenarios and checking with your SU/ Sports department if and what cleaning regime and cleaning products will be available/ required for equipment and other room cleaning.

  • (14) Water fountains: water fountains may not be available, and if they are available they will only be for filling bottles – bring your own bottle, label it, decorate it, name it, but don’t share it.

  • (15) Risk assessments: your university facility managers/ SU/ Sports department will conduct their own facility wide risk assessments, but may also ask club captains and/or contracted coaches to contribute to, or complete independently, risk assessments for your club and its individual sessions.

  • (16) Expect more new and changeable rules: your university facility will likely be introducing new rules for various other things including: contact-less only payment; handling spillages, footwear in hallways and in training halls/ studios/ gyms, personal protective equipment (PPE) for first aiders, accident reporting, security, fire alarm response, use of car parks, use of meeting spaces, use of facility cafes, rules limiting congregating etc., – club captains please check your SU/ sports department’s website regularly for such announcements to keep your members up to date.

  • (17) Communication is key: university facility/ SU/ Sport department staff will need to share a lot of information with participants, and the rules and regulations will vary between regions and institutions, and may change again on very short timescales – club captains and committees must prepare for this by organising very efficiently who will be responsible for reviewing and exchanging information, from which sources and with which members of university/ SU staff, and how this is to be disseminated across multiple channels with your other committee members, club members, contracted coaches and volunteers.

  • (18) Have symptoms, stay home: if you (i) have any coronavirus symptoms (high temperature, a new, continuous cough or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – in which case book a test ASAP), (ii) have had contact within the last 14 days with someone who is now self-isolating, or (iii) you been contacted by NHS Test and Trace then you must self-isolate yourself for 14 days and avoid any training sessions.

No student taekwondo events are planned for the remainder of the 2019-20 academic year.  The British Student Taekwondo Federation’s board regularly reviews the latest UK Government and regional governments’ advice and policy, as well as regional Sports Council and Sport and Recreation Alliance guidance, and we remain in regular consultation with our partners British Universities Colleges Sport (BUCS).

The remaining student taekwondo events scheduled for this academic year (including: three regional and one central Composite University Team training sessions, and the charity’s Annual General Meeting) have been postponed. The events will be rescheduled in due course according to UK Government advice and policy. Please be patient as we work to reschedule these events; many potential venues are restricted in their ability to take bookings, and we anticipate a large number of rescheduled events across many sports may be competing for limited bookings once restrictions are lifted.

For information about the EUSA European Universities Games please see that section in the FAQ.

BUCS have confirmed, following discussions with their Advisory Group, Senior Managers Executive and National Competitions Group, that all BUCS Points will be voided for the 2019-20 season. Further information is outlined in the BUCS Covid-19 Decisions And Next Steps report, specifically decision 8 here.

While this is doleful news for the whole student taekwondo family, not least because the 2019-20 season has been our first year in the BUCS main programme, it is not to be unexpected in these circumstances. The decision impacts on many tens of thousands of student-athletes across all 54 BUCS sports alike. We recognise the very difficult decision taken by BUCS, which was made in close consultation with all BUCS member institutions (i.e., the university sports departments and athletic unions themselves) who responded overwhelmingly in favour of this solution to the incomplete university season.  The BSTF board are now focused on making the next BUCS Taekwondo Championships Series bigger and better than ever!

Whilst BUCS will not publish a final Overall BUCS Points Table for the 2019-20 season those university taekwondo clubs planning to take measure of their performance this year as part of your: funding applications; sponsorship seeking; and performance target setting, should still be able to utilise Appendix 1, their final team ranking and final A-class student-athlete placements for analysis, target setting and decision making purposes.

Final placements for the BUCS Student Championships Series will be announced in due course and the physical BUCS medals will be posted to the winners respective students’ unions some time after they have reopened. Please be patient with all concerned as the movement of staff and closure of offices, including BUCS, all students’ unions and all sports departments, has introduced considerable delay to this process.

The European University Sports Association (EUSA) European University Games (EUG) scheduled for Belgrade in July 2020 have now been postponed to the summer of 2021. Further information is available on the EUSA Games pages of the BUCS website.

We will notify those student-athletes who have qualified by email in due course (please check your email regularly, including junk folders just in case) to provide further information, including registration deadlines for the EUG event being reschedule to the summer of 2021.

The BSTF’s board and executive remain available via our online contact form. Please be aware that working arrangements have been disrupted and that we may take longer than usual to reply. Direct messaging via social media channels are also being checked less frequently at this time and we would encourage the use of the online contact form as the best way to ensure your message reaches us, thank you.