It is great to see that many of our clubs and groups have restarted …

However, Covid-19 still poses a risk, particularly to those who may be in a ‘vulnerable’ group, and it is still the responsibility of us all to prevent the spread of Covid-19 as much as reasonably possible.

Firstly, you should continue to follow any government guidance or regulations that may be in place in your area and follow any requirements of your pool management. You may be required to do or not to do something. If that is the case, then you should of course always do what is required.

Secondly, even if there are few or no government or pool management requirements, think about how your club or group operates and about whether you should continue to take additional measures to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

You should continue to reflect the Covid-19 risk in a risk assessment. This may not need to include as many of the measures that you previously had in place, but your risk assessment should still reflect the fact that Covid-19 is an ongoing risk and set out appropriate measures to mitigate that risk.

Some ideas:

  • You might continue to ask people to socially distance as much as possible, particularly in public areas, in the changing room or on the poolside;
  • You might continue to ask people to wear a mask in public areas and on the poolside;
  • You might continue to have family members or supporters of swimmers go into the water with swimmers rather than club/group instructors and helpers;
  • If you are beginning to have club/group instructors and helpers go into the water with swimmers, think about how this is managed. For example, could you allocate one instructor/helper to one swimmer and not have instructors/helpers pass between different swimmers? Are group activities appropriate and if so, which group activies pose the most risk (so should be avoided)?
  • Have you got a policy and measures in place to:

(a) make sure that people are aware of the ongoing risk and that they are still happy to attend;

(b) make sure that people know how to minimise risk;

(c) make sure that people do not attend if they test positive for Covid-19 or develop symptoms of Covid-19.

  • Are there any other considerations which relate to specific people in your club or group? Discuss this with your members individually. Some swimmers may still be nervous. Some instructors/helpers may still be nervous. What would work for them and you? As has been the case throughout the pandemic, keeping people informed and discussing issues with them is vital. People need to know that they have been thought about and that you are working with them.
  • Do you have other ideas which relate specifically to the way your club/group operates?

Below is a sample risk assessment. Your risk assessment should be tailored to your club/group and it may not include as many measures but should acurately reflect how you plan to run your sessions in view of the ongoing Covid-19 risk.

Also below is a sample form which you might consider it appropriate to have people complete. Consider whether this needs to be every time someone attends or not. Tailor it to your club or group and how it plans to operate.