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Explained: what are the rules for amateur sports?

Credit: Belga

Belgium’s Consultative Committee on Friday decided to postpone its so-called “outdoor plan,” which also changes the rules for outdoor amateur sports.

The outdoor plan – in which more relaxations for outdoor activities were possible from 1 April – has been put “on hold,” leading to some confusion about the measures for sports, which was cleared up on Sunday when the latest update to the Ministerial Decree was published.

So what are the rules for amateur sports, from Monday 22 March?

For children up to 12 years old, both indoors and outdoors, all organised sports activities are allowed in groups of a maximum of 10 (not including supervisors), but they should be organised outdoors “as much as possible.”

For children over 13 years old, organised activities are also allowed in groups of a maximum of 10 (not including supervisors), but these activities must be organised outside. Instructors as well as participants have to respect the social distancing rules as much as possible, meaning that contact is allowed if it is necessary for the nature of the sport.

All children (both up to 12, and from 13 years old) who come together for these activities have to stay in their own group, and cannot mix with children of another group – meaning that competitions or games with participants of other groups or clubs are not allowed.

For adults, sports training and lessons are allowed, but only outside and with a maximum of 10 people, who all keep 1.5 metres distance – in analogy with the current measure about being allowed to meet outdoors in socially-distanced groups of 10 in the rest of society. A possible instructor or coach is included in this group.

This means that any kind of training that requires close physical contact with others is not allowed.

If it is possible to keep a 1.5 metres distance in instruction and sports swimming pools, training is also allowed in groups of 10 people (instructor included).

Changing rooms and showers remain closed, except at swimming pools.

Professional sports are still allowed, following the strict sector protocols.

Maïthé Chini
The Brussels Times