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Covid 19 Toolkit

WHO advice re swimming

World Health Organization advice for when swimming is not a restricted activity.

Returning to Pool Guidance


The Government publishes guidance which sets out information for the public and sport providers on whether it is permitted to participate in grassroots sport and physical activity during COVID-19 restrictions and if so how. 

Swim England regularly updates its FAQs with its interpretation of what restrictions mean for facilities, how it affects our sports and learn to swim lessons, travel and the impact on clubs. The FAQs will be updated on an ongoing basis where necessary.

The Government has published how the rules will change on 17 May following its ‘COVID-19 Response - Spring 2021’ which set out the roadmap out of the current lockdown for England to explain how the restrictions included in the guidance would be lifted over time. These were the changes which happened on 12 Apr. Please familarise yourself with what you can and cannot do from 17 May as further restrictions are eased and follow the guidance in order to protect the NHS and save lives.

Swim England Returning to Pool guidance documents include robust recommendations for operators, casual swimmers, lane swimming, family-fun sessions, club activity, teachers and those attending swimming lessons. These are 'living' documents. Members aged over 18 have been given the green light to return to club training sessions as planned on Monday 17 May rather only be able to attend public swim sessions.

Before returning, clubs must

  • revisit and update their risk assessments with any relevant changes.
  • resend their return to training declaration form for all athletes returning - a revised version of this is available from Swim England.
  • ask for an updated health survey unless this was already covered when completing 2021 renewal returns.

You will find a variety of resources below which will help your Club prepare for Returning to the Pool. This guidance below remains available so that links can be referenced by those organisations which are permitted to operate under local Covid-19 tier restrictions, and for information purposes only for organisations currently not permitted to open.

The Sport and Recreation Alliance updates its website to include the latest government guidance and changes in COVID-19 restrictions and will provide further information on what this means for the sport and recreation sector as it is made available.

With regard to a return to training, it is Somerset ASA's view that participation cannot be without risk. For those wishing to participate in training when it is permitted, please familiarise yourselves with the risks associated with the Covid-19 virus. Our duty of care requires us to follow Government and Public Health England guidance and take all reasonable and proportionate steps to implement processes and protocols recommended by our NGB in order to reduce these risks. Please understand and adhere to the processes and protocols which we put in place for Somerset ASA training sessions when permitted and by doing so, you will help protect your health and the health of other members, volunteers, staff and other users of any facility we use.


Swim England

Swim England has published Returning to Pool guidance documents which include robust recommendations for operators, casual swimmers, lane swimming, family-fun sessions, club activity, teachers and those attending swimming lessons. There have been a number of updates and these are 'living' documents and the latest published versions are shown below: Please use this box link if the document versions below from the Swim England library are not yet up to date. The Government has issued guidance for “Providers of grassroots sport and gym/leisure facilities”. Providers of aquatic activity should review this alongside the Swim England guidance


  • Club Guidance
  • Community Swimming
  • Operator Guidance
  • Guidance for School Swimming
  • Swimming Lessons Guidance
  • User Guidance
  • Returning to Training Guidance for Coaches
  • Advice for Clubs and members travelling abroad
  • Specific guidance for water polo clubs, including guidelines on group sizes, social distancing during breaks and post-game, use of equipment, advice for match officials and coaches, injury treatment plus information for spectators.

Note that Swim England updated both open water club activity and land training guidance.

View Guidance for Virtual Teaching and Coaching

View Swim England's updated responses to Frequently Asked Questions that the 'Returning to the Pool' guidance and documents have generated.

View Swim England pre–national lockdown webinar recordings on

Returning to Competition

Swim England is to begin issuing licenses for level four single club competitions in time for Step 3 of the Government’s roadmap out of the coronavirus lockdown. Swim England published guidance which was followed up with a webinar for event organisers (download pdf) on 21 April to answer questions on how to plan and stage a meet / gala. A set of Frequently Asked Questions has now been developed which will continue to be updated on an ongoing basis where necessary.

Swim England South West has arranged further COVID-19 Lead training for officers who lead on this area within its clubs on these Spring 2021 dates via Zoom, further to discussions held on 14 & 20 July 2020, 4 & 11 August 2020 and 15 Dec 2020. It will provide another opportunity for leads to talk and share ideas between clubs.

Any personal or fitness trainer is being reminded to register with a council first if they want to use open spaces for training sessions and include a Covid-19 risk assessment explaining how social distancing will be maintained.

Swim England / Institute of Swimming has provided Coronavirus (COVID-19) Guidance for Virtual Teaching and Coaching and Land Training Guidance Under New Social Distancing Measures.

View Swim England COVID-19 Club Support Toolkit

Swim England's FAQs are being updated regularly.

Institute of Swimming

So our members, swimming teachers, and partners are able to implement Government and Swim England  guidance safely and effectively, the Institute of Swimming is providing free training. A series of three webinars were initially created and delivered with Swim England which have now been packaged into five videos.

DCMS / Government

View regularly updated guidance for people who work in grassroots sport and gym/leisure facilities.

View guidance for the public, providers of outdoor sport facilities, elite athletes, personal trainers and coaches on the phased return of sport and recreation in England.

View information and advice for voluntary, community and social enterprise organisations during the coronavirus outbreak covering:

  • Guidance for those working in these sectors
  • Guidance about funding and fundraising
  • The role of volunteers
  • Guidance on digital/technical support
  • Business offers of support

Sport England

Sport England updated its Frequently Asked Questions as lockdown restrictions are eased. Other resources which will help plan for a safe return and support the sector to keep staff, volunteers, members and people taking part informed of their responsibilities around social distancing and hygiene, will work alongside both existing and forthcoming government guidance and include

  • Inclusion and accessibility guidance – helping you to understand who can get active, how you can engage specific audiences and how to ensure your facilities are, and remain, accessible to all when allowed to reopen.
  • Clubs toolkit - Club Matters has guidance to help sports clubs prepare for reopening, how to develop a risk register, tips to enforce social distancing, and more.
  • Support for the professional workforce – including advice on staffing considerations for paid work as well as support available.
  • Volunteering guidance – setting out some of the main considerations to help your volunteers return safely, well-informed and prepared.
  • Managing liability and risk guidance – to give providers, be they clubs, governing bodies, community groups or regional associations, advice on what issues need considering and how they might tackle them in order to safely return to play.
  • Hygiene Guidance Resources - helping you clearly communicate key hygiene messages to people taking part in sport and physical activity.
  • Legal risks and duties of care when returning to play - Sheridan's guidance note in the context of coronavirus, shared for the benefit of all sports and physical activity providers.


View free webinars created to support the industry on a wide range of topics, from pool plant to health and safety.


Visit free, online training platform launched by CIMSPA and Sport England, which has been designed to equip anyone working or volunteering in the sport, fitness, leisure and physical activity sector in England with the knowledge and skills they need to confidently return to work or restart their coaching activity.

With some indoor fitness facilities in England able to reopen from 2 Dec 2020, CIMSPA has brought together the key guidance on indoor training and group exercise in England and resources to help people working in the sector to get back to work safely and with confidence.


View guidance on outdoor exercise in UK from the NGB for Group Exercise.

Club Matters

View tips, tools and ideas to help keep your club functioning and working with your members and customers! And as some measures are being relaxed and the country is getting back to activity there is a new suite of resources to give you tips and guidance on how to do this safely! 

uk active

View their operational guidance and framework for the safe delivery of children’s activity provision during social distancing.

Somerset Activity & Sports Partnership




View sector support to help you react and adapt to the current changes we are facing due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Sport and Recreation Alliance

View COVID-19 Business Support Measures FAQs for the sport and recreation sector.

Activity Alliance

View 'Reopening Activity: An inclusive response' which has been produced in consultation with partners across sport, leisure and disability equality to help providers to enable welcoming, and more accessible environments.

RNIB, British Blind Sport

View practical guidance to support the return of blind and partially sighted people to physical activity.


View the 'Return to Play' Mental Health Guidance produced by mental health charity MIND to support the health of staff, coaches, volunteers and participants.

Also view advice from Swim England sports psychologists Hannah Stoyel and Helen Davis on how to cope in a post-lockdown world.


View information to help you decide what steps you and your charity / voluntary organisation needs to take in light of the spread of the covid-19 virus. including involving and managing volunteers.