UK - The return of elite sport: duties of clubs, employers and athletes

Mid-March to early April 2020 saw postponement and then cancellation of almost all elite sport in the United Kingdom. Nonetheless, in football, Premier League clubs voted unanimously to return to small-group training from 19 May 2020 and to contact training around a week later with it now being expected that the Premier League will resume from 17 June 2020.

On 25 May 2020, the Government issued updated guidance to provide elite sports organisations with a set of recommended minimum standards (known as the ‘Elite sport return to training guidance: stage one’ ) for a return to training. Stage two will permit ‘social clustering’ and much closer contact, including equipment sharing and tackling in contact sport.

The guidance does not replace the existing health and safety legislation, which will continue to apply where and how it did before the emergence of Covid-19. This article will discuss some of the issues that may arise for elite athletes and those supporting their return to training.

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