The cessation of amateur and recreational sport has had significant implications globally, impacting economic, social and health facets of population well-being. As a result, there is pressure to resume sport at all levels. The ongoing prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 and subsequent ‘second waves’ require urgent best practice guidelines to be developed to return recreational (non-elite) sports as quickly as possible while prioritising the well-being of the participants and support staff.
This guidance document describes the need for such advice and the process of collating available evidence. Expert opinion is integrated into this document to provide uniform and pragmatic recommendations, thereby optimising on-field and field-side safety for all involved persons, including coaches, first responders and participants.
The nature of SARS-CoV-2 transmission means that the use of some procedures performed during emergency care and resuscitation could potentially be hazardous, necessitating the need for guidance on the use of personal protective equipment, the allocation of predetermined areas to manage potentially infective cases and the governance and audit of the process.
- protective clothing
- communicable disease
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Contributors LH and GP conceived the theme; JP served as senior author and designed the article framework; LH and GP drafted the initial manuscript; RS, SaS, MP and MR contributed to the design and content in there specific areas of expertise and practice. CR, CMC, AM, RW, PM, JG, JM, NE, JH, SiS and RJ gave sport-specific insights. All authors analysed the document through four rounds of redrafting and gave final approval before final submission.
Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Competing interests None declared.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
Author note This position statement is endorsed by: The English Football Association, The English Rugby Football League, The Scottish Football Association, The Lawn Tennis Association, The Welsh Rugby Union and Scottish Rugby, supported by these UK and international sports and exercise medicine bodies: The English Institute of Sport, The Scottish Institute of Sport, FIFA, The South African Rugby Union and Wits Sport and Health, South Africa.