1. Face coverings.
Wearing face coverings is now a legal requirement in shops and other indoor public places from 14 September.
Gyms and leisure centres are indoor public places, so you will need to wear a face covering when you go there and you will need to keep it on depending on what you are doing. If you are preparing to exercise, changing or undertaking any activity that isn’t strenuous, especially when in close contact with other people, you will need to wear a face covering.
The World Health Organisation advises against wearing a face covering when exercising as sweat can make a face covering become wet more quickly, making it difficult to breathe and promoting the growth of microorganisms. It advises the important preventative measure during exercise is to maintain physical distance from others.
As part of the measures the operator of the gym or leisure centre will need to put in place to minimise the risk of exposure to coronavirus, they will need to consider when wearing a face covering would not be appropriate and what mitigating action may be needed. They will be expected to give you further information about the systems put in place and what you will be expected to do.
More Welsh Government guidelines on face coverings can be found here: https://gov.wales/face-coverings-guidance-public
2. Local lockdowns.
If you’re a resident of these boroughs you have additional restrictions around travelling outside of your borough. However, leisure facilities can remain open. The operators of these facilities must take all necessary measures to manage risk and maintain social distancing, and a gathering of people to exercise or play sport, both indoors and outdoors, must not exceed 30 people.
Rhondda Cynon Taf: https://gov.wales/rhondda-cynon-taf-lockdown-frequently-asked-questions#section-50704
Blaenau Gwent: https://gov.wales/blaenau-gwent-county-borough-lockdown-frequently-asked-questions#section-50910
3. General sport guidelines.
The Welsh Government regularly updates their guidance for sport, recreation and leisure, indoors and outdoors, from grassroots to elite. You can read the latest guidelines here: https://gov.wales/sport-recreation-and-leisure-guidance-phased-return-html
You should also be aware of the ‘rule of 6’, which limits the amount of people you are able to meet with socially indoors: https://gov.wales/guidance-leaving-your-home-and-seeing-other-people-coronavirus
4. Governing body guidelines.
If you are involved in a sport club, you will need to follow the return to play guidelines issued by your governing body. You can find links to governing body information here: https://www.sport.wales/beactivewales-campaign/the-status-of-sports-and-activities-after-lock-down/
5. Additional guidance on indoor sport and exercise.
Where people exercise together indoors at a fitness studio, gym, swimming pool, other indoor leisure centre or facility or any other open premises, gatherings should not exceed 30 people and physical distancing must be maintained. Examples of people exercising together include a group swimming lesson or fitness class, and swimming or gym sessions open to the general public.
Simultaneous gatherings of individuals and groups up to 30 people are allowed within a large space such as a swimming pool, a gym, or a sports hall, as long as the space allows for physical distancing, with groups and individuals separated and managed safely. This should only be considered where space is sufficient to allow 100sqft per person or 3sqm per bather as set out in UK Active Guidance, where entry and exit for individuals and groups can be managed, and where the space can be partitioned so individuals and groups do not interact, without limiting the ability to allow appropriate ventilation and control environmental factors such as humidity in each space..