Community Sport and Swimming Pools

Current restrictions in force as part of Step 3.1 of Canberra’s Recovery Plan are outlined in the page below.

A minor change to capacity numbers for smaller sized venues, facilities and businesses is scheduled to come into effect at 9am Friday 18 September, pending a successful COVID Safe Check point on Thursday 17 September. To find out more check the Summary of key changes page.

Hints on how to prepare your business, venue or facility for this change is available in our How to manage patron numbers under 25 person rule fact sheet..

What can I do?

From 9am on Friday 18 September 2020:

  • Community sporting activities (other than classes and training) can have up to 100 spectators (excluding staff and participants) for each indoor space and each outdoor space where one person per 4 square metres of usable space can be observed.  This includes community sport activities taking place at a swimming pool, such as competitive races or water polo matches.
  • For classes and training, venues, facilities and businesses can have a maximum of 25 people (excluding staff) across the whole venue.  Venues must still abide by their standard occupancy loading and regulatory conditions of the venue.
  • Venues, facilitates and businesses that want to have more than 25 people in their venue must apply the ‘one person per 4 square metres of usable space’ rule.  The maximum number of patrons permitted is 100 for each indoor space and each outdoor space.  No modifications can be made to venues.
  • The current arrangements for swimming pools of one person per 4 square metres of usable space throughout the venue applies, up to a maximum of 100 people in each indoor space and each outdoor space (excluding staff).
  • Competition and squad swimming continue to be permitted within the venue occupancy requirements for swimming pools.
  • There continues to be no limit on the number of swimmers per lane, however numbers need to be managed.
  • Full-contact sporting competition, including dance and martial arts continues to be permitted.
  • Communal facilities (such as changerooms) can still open if a risk assessment has been done and a strict cleaning regime is put in place. This should be outlined in the COVID Safety Plan.
  • Businesses or sporting groups can choose to open canteens, however consideration must be given to how gatherings of people will be prevented. Physical distancing requirements to be clearly marked within and around canteens.
  • Usable space is defined in the Public Health Direction as the space that people can freely move around in, but not including the following areas:
    • stages and similar areas,
    • restrooms, changerooms and similar areas,
    • areas occupied by fixtures, fittings, and displays, and
    • staff only areas and areas that are closed off or not being used.

What can’t I do?

  • Do not allow gatherings to take place in communal areas.
  • Spectators must be seated, where seating is available.  Otherwise, they must observe physical distancing of 1.5 metres where not from the same household.
  • A person who owns, controls or operates a non-essential business or undertaking under the Public Health Direction must not temporarily divide any usable indoor space or usable outdoor space for the purposes of calculating usable space.

What are my responsibilities?

  • All sporting organisations, clubs and venues must have a Return to Play in a COVID Safe Environment plan or a COVID Safety Plan (whichever is relevant).
  • Facilities must clearly display occupancy allowance at the entrance to the venue as well as display additional signs with area occupancy for separate individual spaces.
  • Sport or venue must have a Return to Play in a COVID Safe Environment plan, or a COVID Safety Plan (whichever is relevant).
  • Limit the sharing of equipment as much as possible, and as a minimum clean between each use.
  • Put a process in place to ensure that shared equipment is appropriately cleaned between each use.
  • Ensure facilities (for example canteens and change rooms) are only opened with appropriate physical distancing and cleaning procedures in place.
  • Facilities need to manage the number of people in a swimming pool at any one time.
  • Where lane swimming, people should reduce contact with other swimmers either in or near their lane and particularly at the end of each lane.
  • For larger team sports, consider maintaining smaller separate groups at training.
  • Maintain a minimum number of officials and coaches.
  • Avoid gatherings taking place in communal areas and patrons are encouraged to leave straight after play.

What are the community responsibilities?

  • The public should continue to abide by the “get in, train, get out” principal and not gather in communal areas before or after training.
  • Reduce contact with other swimmers, particularly if you are sharing lanes.
  • Ensure you properly clean equipment between each use.
  • Maintain personal hygiene, including regular hand washing.
  • Stay home if unwell.
  • Get tested if you have COVID-19 symptoms.
  • Download the Check In CBR app and sign into participating Canberra venues you visit.

What does the public need to know?

  • Continue to practise good hand and respiratory hygiene, physical distancing, stay home if you are unwell and get tested if you have symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Ensure you provide your first name and contact number to any businesses that are required to ask for contact tracing purposes. Download the Check In CBR app to use at participating venues across Canberra.
  • Be sensible when you have people over at your residence and have your own control measures in place. Know who is there and at what times, download the COVIDSafe app, join Flu Tracker and participate in important YourSay Community Panel engagements and health surveys that will help the ACT respond the best that it can.
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Acknowledgement of Country

We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the ACT, the Ngunnawal people. We acknowledge and respect their continuing culture and the contribution they make to the life of this city and this region.

Last Updated: September 18 2020