Racing returns as Scotland enters Level 3

Race bubbles are back and Scots free to travel anywhere (in the UK) to run

The long-awaited move to Level 3 restrictions for all of Scotland comes into force today (Monday, 26 April), nudging the country’s runners ever closer to a normal sporting life.  

As of today, all adult runners can travel between Level 3 areas to take part in organised sport – including club and group training sessions – as well as for informal exercise. They are also permitted to travel throughout the UK for competition or a running holiday. Overseas travel for non-elite sport is not yet permitted. 

From today, runners will once again be able to get fitted for new trainers, as all non-essential retail – including running shops – reopens.

sportscotland and the Scottish government have also confirmed that competition is permitted in Level 3 areas – subject to a limit of 200 athletes per day, competing in bubbles of no more than 30. Officials and volunteers are not included in the limit of 200, but spectators are not allowed. 

Licences will now be granted for events, but scottishathletics recommends they take the form of ‘club organised competition for local residents’ for the time being. 

The next anticipated change to event guidance is early June, when the country should move into Level 1 and/or Level 0 restrictions. At that stage, events with over 200 runners and limited numbers of spectators should be allowed, and licensing further guided by venue size.   

Despite the joy that the move to Level 3 will bring, runners should note that the requirement for social distancing during training and competition has not yet been relaxed. Athletes must still remain 2m apart from each other when running side by side, or 5m while running single file. In adult track races, however, each lane can now be used.  When training, scottishathletics still recommends a maximum group size of 15, including jogleaders or coaches. 

From today, runners who enjoy cross training will once again be able to make use of gyms – for individual training – and other indoor facilities. Whether Scotland's runners return in droves to the dreadmill after nearly a year of running in the best our country's weather can throw at us is yet to be seen!

Image courtsy: Miguel Amuto@Unsplash  

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