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Here we go again – Lockdown 3.0 is announced

Sense of deja vu as England returns to lockdown to curb COVID-19

Just a few days after implementing changes that moved another 20 million more people into Tier 4 restrictions, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced Lockdown 3.0 in England with effect from Tuesday 5 January for at least six weeks.

On Monday 4 January the country moved to Alert Level 5 – the highest level in the coronavirus control plan published by the Prime Minister in May – leaving no realistic option other than to reintroduce the national lockdown to replace the previous tiering system.

The lockdown measures are legally enforceable and runners will be keen to ensure they can maintain their fitness and mental wellbeing throughout the difficult days ahead, without falling foul of the law.

Although the lockdown's headline message is: 'Stay at Home', there is clear advice regarding exercise. Elite sportspeople and their coaches, as well as disabled athletes, are still able to gather to compete and train, subject to strict protocols and existing measures.

General exercise for adults is permitted alone, with members of your household or support bubble, “or, when on your own, with one person from another household”. Such exercise should take place: “in a public outdoor place”, as stated on the Government's website here

England Athletics has updated its guidance for athletics and running from 5 January 2021 to reflect these nationwide changes. In its notice EA states: “Following the UK Government’s announcement on Monday 4 January of a new national lockdown, regrettably, our guidance for athletics and running must reflect these enforced Covid-19 restrictions across England”. 

The EA statement confirms the suspension of all face-to-face indoor and outdoor club or group activity; the suspension of all indoor and outdoor competitions; the suspension of all face-to-face coaches’ and officials’ education and the suspension of any other face-to-face club/group training sessions, events, athlete camps, running groups or other social events, as well as club committee or other meetings. The full EA guidance can be read here

So, it's back to solo training or running with a buddy, while giving COVID-19 a wide berth until the vaccines and lockdown measures have sent this persistent virus packing for good. 

Meanwhile, here is a link to previous lockdown advice around nine months ago from runABC coach Alan Newman to help us all to lockdown well once again...

Image: Mohamed Hassan on Pixabay

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