In England (government’s version 23 March 2021)
From 29 March, the rules on social contact will change. People will not be required to stay at home, and will be permitted to meet outdoors in groups of up to 6 people, or as a group of two households, for exercise or recreation.
Outdoor sport for adults and children is permitted in larger numbers, provided it is formally organised. Contact combat sports can resume outdoors at phase 1 of the contact combat sports framework for adults – see the government’s combat sport specific rules and the Return to Sport Phases tab on this page for a detailed summary.
Participants should adhere to social distancing when not actively participating (e.g. during breaks in play, or when awaiting substitutions). Social interaction before and after playing any sport should only take place outdoors, and in separate and distinct groups consisting of up to 6 people or two households.
Where sport is not formally organised, it can only take place within the rules on social contact above – in groups of up to 6 people, or two households. Therefore, make sure your SU/ Sports department have vetted your return to sport plan.
Indoor sport and physical activity is not permitted and indoor sport facilities must remain closed, except for specific groups.
In Scotland (government’s version 11 March 2021)
Virtually all areas of Scotland is under level 4, i.e., “stay at home” restriction level where no indoor sport is permitted, except for national team elite athlete training.
The current Coronavirus (COVID-19): local protection levels determine what restrictions on participating in sport/ martial arts are in place based on your area’s protection level for different age groups, indoors and outdoors.
In Wales (government’s version 27 Mar 2021)
There are no legal restrictions on sport, exercise and outdoor activity, but in practice this is constrained by other restrictions, such as the closure of indoor sport and leisure facilities. To avoid increasing the burden on the NHS and the emergency services, we continue to advise people not to take unnecessary risks while exercising or taking part in any activity. All reasonable measures must be taken to maintain physical distancing.
You can exercise in public outdoor places with members of your household or support bubble, or with people from one other household, as long as the total number of people exercising is no more than six (excluding any carers or children under 11 from either of those households), and you remain outdoors. In addition to this, from 27 March, children and young people aged under 18 (or persons who were aged under 18 on 31 August 2020) can take part in organised outdoor activities, which could include organised sport activities, where they are held outdoors.
Up to six people from no more than two households (excluding any carers or children under 11 from either of those households) can meet outdoors at any one time. Up to 4 people from two households can meet outdoors for non-contact, socially distanced exercise only.
You must stay within Wales. This means that you should not be travelling to other areas of the UK to meet with people and people from other parts of the UK should not be travelling in to Wales to meet you, except in limited circumstances.
In Northern Ireland (government’s version 25 Mar 2021)
The current regulations are in place until at least 1 April 2021.
Outdoor exercise (individuals/ single household exercise) only is currently permitted.
In all regions
all participants, officials, volunteers and spectators must undergo a self-assessment for any COVID-19 symptoms. No-one should leave home to participate in sport or officiate if they, or someone they live with, has any of the following:
- A high temperature
- A new, continuous cough
- A loss of, or change to, their sense of smell or taste
Should an individual have demonstrated any such symptoms, they must follow NHS and PHE guidance on self-isolation; 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.