New Delhi: The Ministry of youth affairs and sports on Friday finally issued guidelines for training of sportspersons at swimming pools in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic (Covid-19). Swimming pools across the country were closed after the nationwide lockdown to curb the outbreak came into effect. The swimming polls will reopen from October 5 for sportspersons.
The SOPs will apply to all Sports Authority of India (SAI) and non-SAI centers wherein training of sportspersons may resume, provided no orders of the local authorities prohibit such facilities to resume operations i.e. micro-containment zones, the ministry said in a statement.
After being shut since March to contain the deadly coronavirus, swimming pools across the country were finally allowed to reopen for the training of sportspersons from October 15 in areas outside the containment zones.
1. Competitive Swimmers to be defined as all sportspersons, not below the age of 12 and engaged in training for purposes of preparing for participating in swimming competition, and shall not include contact sport like Waterpolo, learn to swim, or swimming for general fitness.
As per the guidelines, the coaches and support staff will be directly responsible for the training of these athletes. The head coach shall ensure that the training is carried out with the minimum required staff only.
It is the responsibility of the centre head and coach in-charge to ensure complete adherence to training protocols, the communique informed.
Obligatory self-declaration of the infection-free condition by players and staff re-joining the centre shall be provided to Covid Task Force officers before entering the premises, and personal training equipment shall be disinfected.
Moreover, the athletes and staff shall be screened.
Additionally, the RT-PCR test shall be conducted for new or returning athletes.
What are the guidelines for residential trainees?
Residential trainees will need to produce a negative Covid Report 72 hour/96 hours before arrival to the centre followed by 14 days quarantine period. O"n the 6th/7th Day of the quarantine period, another Covid Test must be conducted. Thereafter, trainees can mix with the other quarantined trainees only. Only after completing 7 more days, they can mix with other trainees," the notification said.
What are the SOPs for training facilities?
The training of sportspersons in swimming pools at any place within the facility other than toilets shall be prohibited.
Athletes/coaches/facility staff who begin to cough/sneeze/above normal temperature for any reason must move away from others until coughing/sneezing dissipates.
In case of above normal temperature, a coach or staff member should ask athletes, as they come into practice, specifically listing certain symptoms, and send home those athletes reporting illness or experiencing symptoms.
The use of the Arogya Setu app shall be made mandatory for all athletes and staff at the centre.
What are the protocols and precautions at swimming pools?
Maximum Pool Capacity / Batch 50 M 10 lane – 20 Swimmers 25M/50M8lane-16/16swimmers
Moreover, the chlorine levels in the pool will have to be measured 45 min before the start of practice.
What are the protocols and precautions at the Facility (Swimming Pool Management)?
A Covid Task Force shall be constituted at each training centre to guide and monitor all trainees, coaches, and staff within the centres. This task force shall ensure that the SOPs are complied with. The swimming pool operators should have a dedicated officer responsible for Covid-19 considerations.
What to do while swimming?
One has to follow directions for spacing and stay at least six feet apart from others. They should not make physical contact and refrain from giving high fives.
"The Covid Task Force shall work closely with the coaches and support staff to define guidelines and protocols to conduct the training in the Covid environment," the notice concluded.