Covid-19 Guidance for England

exercise class image



Updated 13 August 2021


While the legal limits on social contact and distancing are being removed, there are still some legal requirements and official guidance in place, along with precautions that we would recommend in order to minimise transmission of the virus, especially in indoor spaces.

It’s important to remember that there are still cases of COVID-19 in England (with case numbers currently rising quite rapidly) and there is a risk you could catch or pass on the virus, even if you are fully vaccinated.

Research from Ipsos MORI and Sport England has shown that many people are still worried about the risks to themselves and others: only 40% of people feel comfortable with going to indoor gyms, leisure centres and swimming pools, and 56% of people with a health condition are still worried about leaving the house to be active. You may want to bear this in mind when deciding which mitigation measures to keep in place.

Government Guidance/Legal Requirements


Employers still have a legal duty to manage risks to those affected by their business. The way to do this is to carry out a health and safety risk assessment, including the risk of COVID-19, and to take reasonable steps to mitigate the risks you identify.

The Working Safely guidance sets out a range of mitigations employers should consider including:
  • Cleaning surfaces that people touch regularly;
  • Identifying poorly-ventilated areas in the venue and taking steps to improve air flow;
  • Ensuring that staff and customers who are unwell do not attend the workplace or venue;
  • Communicating to staff and customers the measures you have put in place.

The Government has also outlined a set of recommended “Safe Behaviours” in its Covid-19 roadmap:
  • Wash hands frequently, for at least 20 seconds.
  • Wear a face covering in enclosed environments.
  • Maintain space with anyone outside your household or bubble.
  • Meet with others outdoors where possible.
  • Minimise the number of different people you meet and the duration of meetings, if possible.
  • Let fresh air in.
  • Download the NHS Test & Trace app.
  • Get a test immediately if you have symptoms.
  • Self isolate if you have symptoms, have tested positive, or had contact with someone with COVID-19.

Covid-19 Symptoms and Self-Isolation


You must still ensure that your customers do not have any coronavirus symptoms, and you should not go to work if you have any symptoms.

If you, a staff member, a customer (or someone in their household) has a persistent cough, a high temperature or has lost their sense of taste or smell, they should self-isolate and get a test.

You can find more information in the section on people who need to self-isolate and you can find out more about the main symptoms of coronavirus here. With the Delta variant, a headache, sore throat and runny nose are now the most commonly reported symptoms in the UK.

In England from 16 August, the rules on self-isolation are changing:


If you are notified that you have had close contact (or live in the same household) with someone with COVID-19 you will not be required to self-isolate if any of the following apply:

  • You are fully vaccinated
  • You are below the age of 18 years 6 months
  • You have taken part in or are currently part of an approved COVID-19 vaccine trial
  • You are not able to get vaccinated for medical reasons

NHS Test and Trace will contact you to let you know that you have been identified as a contact and check whether you are legally required to self-isolate. If you are not legally required to self-isolate, you will be provided with advice on testing and given guidance on preventing the spread of COVID-19. Even if you do not have symptoms, you will be advised to have a PCR test as soon as possible.

See here for more information on close contacts See here for more information on household contacts

CIMSPA / EMD UK Recommendations


Ventilation


Fresh air ventilation is one of the best ways to reduce the risk of transmission indoors. The Government guidance states that you should identify poorly-ventilated areas in the venue and take steps to improve air flow, such as open doors, windows and air vents where possible. A CO2 monitor could help you assess whether a space is poorly ventilated, and if you should switch on additional mechanical ventilation or open windows - CO2 levels below 800ppm are recommended by SAGE.

You can find more information in the section on ventilation and the HSE guidance on ventilation and air conditioning.

Cleaning and Hygiene


We recommend maintaining the hygiene and cleaning regimes you have established during the pandemic, including: clean surfaces regularly (especially those that are being touched a lot), clean equipment between each use, provide hand sanitiser and encourage staff and customers to sanitise and wash their hands frequently.

If you are cleaning after a known or suspected case of COVID-19, follow the measures set out in the guidance for cleaning in non-healthcare settings.

Occupancy and Social Distancing


While there are no longer any legal requirements for social distancing, we recommend encouraging customers to keep their distance from each other wherever possible, especially those who have not been fully vaccinated or may be at higher risk.

The capacity limits for indoor facilities are no longer in place, but we would again recommend a sensible approach (based on a risk assessment) to prevent overcrowding and allow space for those who wish to maintain some degree of social distancing.

Combat-based sessions can return to pre-Covid delivery methods for adults and children.

Face Coverings


The legal requirement to wear face coverings will be lifted, and people have never been required to wear face coverings while taking part in sport and physical activity, including coaching/instructing.

While gyms, fitness and leisure facilities are not defined as crowded areas under the Government guidance, we would still encourage the use of face coverings in enclosed public areas when not engaging in sport and physical activity, and for you to be supportive of any staff or customers who would like to continue wearing one. Consideration should also be given to the continued use of face coverings for staff if in close contact roles including first aid in line with Resuscitation Council UK guidance.

Equipment Spacing


Equipment no longer needs to be spaced 2m apart, please risk assess and check with manufacturers (if needed) for recommended space between equipment.

NHS Test and Trace


While it is no longer a legal requirement, we would still encourage you to use the NHS Test and Trace app when running sessions, to support the test and trace system and for customers who wish to continue using it.

You can download and display your own QR code poster here and encourage participants over the age of 16 check-in before taking part.

Where participants cannot scan QR codes, we encourage you to still record their attendance in accordance with GDPR regulations, keeping details of all class attendees for 21 days and providing data to NHS Test and Trace if requested. There is more information here.

If you are working in a gym or other facility, they may be displaying a QR code, which you and your clients are encouraged to scan before your session.

Risk Assessment


Ensure you update your risk assessments in line with changes to the delivery of your sessions.

Large Events


Updated guidance on larger scale events (for example fitness festivals, charity fitness sessions, quarterly workshops and large scale fitness conventions) will be updated in the coming days.

NHS Covid Pass


The Government is encouraging organisations in higher risk settings to use the NHS COVID Pass as a condition of entry, in order to reduce the risk of COVID-19. This will especially be the case in large crowded settings where people are likely to be in close proximity to others outside their household.

Fitness, leisure and physical activity settings are not considered to be in the higher risk category, so there is no expectation or requirement to use the Covid Pass.

You can find more information about the NHS COVID Pass here

Further resources:


 

Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity


CIMSPA's work enhances the career opportunities and professional development of the workforce operating in sport, fitness, exercise, leisure, gym, coaching, health and wellbeing. We achieve this through sector-wide engagement, membership, networking, events, directories and professional standards.

 

Incorporated by Royal Charter Charity registration number 1144545

This site uses cookies to store information on your computer. See our Cookie Policy for further details on how to block cookies.
I am happy with this
 

Cookies

What is a Cookie

A cookie, also known as an HTTP cookie, web cookie, or browser cookie, is a piece of data stored by a website within a browser, and then subsequently sent back to the same website by the browser. Cookies were designed to be a reliable mechanism for websites to remember things that a browser had done there in the past, which can include having clicked particular buttons, logging in, or having read pages on that site months or years ago.

NOTE : It does not know who you are or look at any of your personal files on your computer.

Why we use them

When we provide services, we want to make them easy, useful and reliable. Where services are delivered on the internet, this sometimes involves placing small amounts of information on your device, for example, your computer or mobile phone. These include small files known as cookies. They cannot be used to identify you personally.

These pieces of information are used to improve services for you through, for example:

  • recognising that you may already have given a username and password so you don’t need to do it for every web page requested
  • measuring how many people are using services, so they can be made easier to use and there’s enough capacity to ensure they are fast
  • analysing anonymised data to help us understand how people interact with our website so we can make them better

You can manage these small files and learn more about them from the article, Internet Browser cookies- what they are and how to manage them

Learn how to remove cookies set on your device

There are two types of cookie you may encounter when using our site :

First party cookies

These are our own cookies, controlled by us and used to provide information about usage of our site.

We use cookies in several places – we’ve listed each of them below with more details about why we use them and how long they will last.

Third party cookies

These are cookies found in other companies’ internet tools which we are using to enhance our site, for example Facebook or Twitter have their own cookies, which are controlled by them.

We do not control the dissemination of these cookies. You should check the third party websites for more information about these.

Log files

Log files allow us to record visitors’ use of the site. The CMS puts together log file information from all our visitors, which we use to make improvements to the layout of the site and to the information in it, based on the way that visitors move around it. Log files do not contain any personal information about you. If you receive the HTML-formatted version of a newsletter, your opening of the newsletter email is notified to us and saved. Your clicks on links in the newsletter are also saved. These and the open statistics are used in aggregate form to give us an indication of the popularity of the content and to help us make decisions about future content and formatting.