Children’s team sports could be able to resume as soon as the end of next month, due to concerns about young people’s wellbeing, according to The Times.
The UK is eagerly awaiting the unveiling of the roadmap out of lockdown on Monday 22 February, with the Prime Minister expected to confirm that schools will reopen on 8 March and other restrictions will be gradually eased in the following months.
According to reports, government ministers are particularly keen to allow young people to resume team sport activities, even in instances where social distancing isn’t possible, such as football.
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Which restrictions will be eased first?
There is significant speculation around the order in which the current level of Covid restrictions will be lifted, though the Government has stressed that many decisions have not yet been finalised.
It has also been reported that there may not be a set date for each measure to be lifted, as the time frame will depend on how case numbers react to changes to the restrictions.
It is thought that allowing people to sit down and socialise outdoors with someone from another household will be among the first things to be permitted after schools have reopened.
A resumption of children’s team sports could follow soon afterwards, with one Whitehall source telling the Times that they expect them to resume next month. However, another source said that this is subject to infection rates coming down, and could be delayed if they do not fall.
Experts have expressed concern throughout the pandemic about the impact of reduced socialistion, exercise and education on children, both in the short and long term.
It is thought that sports which allow people to socially distance - such as golf and tennis - could be permitted again by the end of March, while adult team sports are likely to resume later, potentially in May.