Updated Phase 2 Return to Rugby Guidelines for Clubs & Schools

Updated Phase 2 Return to Rugby Guidelines for Clubs & Schools

Scottish Rugby publishes updated Phase 2 Return to Rugby guidelines for clubs and schools (JUNE-JULY 2020).

Phase 2 Return to Rugby Guidelines (JUNE-JULY 2020)

Scottish Rugby has updated the Return to Rugby Phase 2 guidance for clubs and schools. This guidance comes into effect from Monday 29 June.

To begin preparing for when rugby can resume work has been developed by the Threat Management Group’s Return to Rugby sub-group to help clubs have appropriate measures in place to manage the safety of players, coaches and members.

The information updated below outlines both guidance on re-opening pitches, guidance around players training and also new roles within clubs specifically to provide a safe environment.

A webinar will be held on Monday 29 June at 3.00pm for club and school officials to hear about the phase 2 guidelines and to answer questions. This webinar was recorded and available to watch the bottom of this page.

Covid-19 Safety Coordinator: To support a Return to Rugby, Scottish Rugby will support each club to appoint a Covid-19 Safety Coordinator to address the Covid-19 pandemic. The purpose of this role is to oversee public health and safety measures across the club, ensuring that the club is operating in a safe manner and adheres to Scottish Government and Scottish Rugby guidelines. This is a mandatory role for all clubs and will be included in the Minimum Operating Standards for season 2020/21.

Clubs must appoint this role before any official club activity takes place (i.e. Phase 2 individual training), with the first round of training eligible to take place on Thursday 2 July.

Please see below for further information on the Covid-19 Safety Coordinator role (including nomination information, role description and supporting documents). Nominations can be made by clicking this link

Pitch re-opening: In line with Scottish Government guidance, from Monday 29 June, clubs will be able to open their outdoor pitches for individuals to use for fitness and conditioning purposes only (conditions apply). During this time, indoor areas (including toilets) are to remain closed. Individuals (who live locally, within 5miles) will be able to train in maximum groups of 8 from a maximum 2 other households (or extended households). Please see below for further pitch re-opening, player activity guidance and pitch risk assessments.

Clubs should be aware that the easing of restrictions does not mean that all facilities/venues can open immediately. Owners/operators (e.g. local authorities) require time to consider the implications of opening facilities and venues and put plans in place to ensure the safety of participants, staff and volunteers.

During Phase 2 players cannot participate in traditional rugby activities such as touch rugby or contact games due to the physical distancing measures still in place. Players can only undertake individual training activities, with no shared equipment (in maximum groups of 8 from a maximum 2 other households (or extended households)) and take responsibility for maintaining physical distancing and strong hand hygiene at all times.

Updated Scottish Government Routemap (24 June): As per the Scottish Government announcement on Wednesday 24 June, an indicative date for the re-opening of outdoor hospitality areas (e.g. rugby club outdoor bar areas) has been set for 6 July. The Scottish Government will issue a further update nearer the time.

Scottish Rugby is also seeking further guidance from Scottish Government and sportscotland on details of the indicative date for ‘organised outdoor contact sports resuming for children and young people (subject to guidance)’ on the 13 July. Until clarity is sought, we urge everyone in our game to continue to adhere to the current Return to Rugby Phase 2 and public health guidance.

Further details on the updated Scottish Government routemap (as per the announcement on 24 June) can be found here.

Scottish Rugby is working with the Scottish Government to ensure the domestic game can begin a phased return in line with the easing of lockdown restrictions and with the aim of helping clubs through this process. Further information on future phases will be communicated when appropriate.


Further Return to Rugby Information

The close contact nature of rugby means that there are unique challenges when it comes to the threat of spreading Covid-19. We ask everyone involved in our game to be patient and empathetic throughout this process, which may require extra caution to be taken to ensure we don’t risk spreading the virus further. This added caution may manifest itself by the community game not moving between phases at the same pace as other sports.

Please also note that Scottish Rugby Return to Rugby guidelines will, at times, differ from other countries and sports. This is due to the unique set of circumstances we as a community currently face here in Scotland, and the complex nature of returning to a contact sport safely.

While we are all eager to return to rugby, the welfare of our friends, family, teammates, communities, and protecting the NHS, must remain a priority.

We firmly believe that rugby will provide a vehicle for safe exercise and social connection once the Government’s phased roadmap is implemented. However, we know that public perception about rugby’s ‘readiness’ to return will be critical, and we, as a rugby community, will need to work together to build confidence and reassure people that rugby is ready.

We will work collaboratively with club, school and community representatives and groups to develop guidelines and resources for each Phase of the Return to Rugby plan.

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