Today SOA have published their guidance on permitted activities and events for orienteering in Scotland with immediate effect. Following the First Minister’s statement on Tuesday we are delighted to see the easing of our ‘Stay At Home’ restrictions to permit the return of organised sport. It gives us great pleasure to announce that club activities and coaching can resume for both adults and young people, within the guidelines outlined here. There is further good news that club member only events will be allowed to resume but strict adherence to local authority boundary limits for travel and participation in events must be respected. As always our clear message is to stick to the guidance published but also to always to act as ambassadors of our sport and ensure we all stick to the ethos of the guidelines as well. We welcome the opportunity to restart our sport and very much look forward to clubs re-engaging with their members in person.
Club Coaching and Activities Return
We would like to say a big thank you to all the clubs and volunteers for all your efforts throughout lockdown and the considerable adaptability shown to keep your members engaged. We are so pleased to be able to restart our club and coaching activities face to face. Our priority in this first phase of the restart is to enable members to come together, to reconnect and to enjoy participating in orienteering as part of club activity. Our guidance has been approved by sportscotland, on behalf of the Scottish Government, to enable groups of up to 15 adults to participate in sessions. However adults will only be permitted to attend their club training activities within the local authority area in which they reside.
We appreciate everyone will have had very different experiences throughout lockdown and sessions will need to cater for a wide range of physical ability as well as confidence in our return. We want to assure members that risk assessments are in place to minimise any risk of transmission through participating in orienteering activities.
There are different restrictions in place for young people aged 17 and under which permit some flexibility on travel to their club activity outwith their local authority area and in bigger groups up to 30. Any club that wishes to host junior only sessions, please do get in touch with SOA if you require any further advice.
Due to the guidance that club only activity is allowed at this time, no regional or national squad training is permitted.
Club Member Only Local Events
Our first step to the restart of events is to permit club member only events where adult members can enter providing they reside within the local authority area in which the event is taking place. No travel across local authority boundaries are permitted for adults (over the age of 18) including event officials. In order to enable the return of young people to sport, those aged 17 and under are permitted to travel to their club training and events out with their local authority area. Parents can transport their child(ren) to the event/activity but are not allowed to participate.
Similar to the restrictions lifting following our first lockdown, SOA are only able to permit club member only events as national sporting guidance makes it clear that inter-club is not allowed during the ‘Stay At Home’ Level 4 guidance. This is an area we will keep a close watch on, knowing the impact it has on many members especially within the Central belt.
Updated Risk Assessments
We appreciate that the publication of guidance will lead to a number of questions. In order to be able to answer them effectively, we will look to host a Question & Answer session on guidance next week. Given we are likely to hear more from the Scottish Government on Tuesday, we hope to host this session on Thursday and will let members know when they can sign up for this Zoom session online.