Return to Play – Step 1

From today, Monday 29th March 2021, the government eases lockdown restrictions for sport. Outdoor sports facilities such as tennis and basketball courts, sports pitches, outdoor skateparks and outdoor swimming pools can reopen. Organised outdoor sport and physical activity for adults and children can return.  

The ‘return to play’ is welcome news to the sport sector and participants. 2020 was an unprecedented year with the onset of a global pandemic.  CP Sport cancelled all events from 12 March 2020 and soon moved into the virtual space providing social cafes, equipment rental service and a virtual challenge series. These provided a connection with beneficiaries and support for people with cerebral palsy to be active at home.

Sport England and Activity Alliance findings show that disabled people have been disproportionately affected by coronavirus, with specific impairment groups advised to shield from the beginning of the restrictions being imposed. Twice as many disabled people felt that coronavirus greatly reduced their ability to do sport or physical activity compared to non-disabled people which has frequently resulted in physical and mental health being harder to manage. 

It is vital that opportunities to get active safely are available particularly for disabled people who are more likely to experience barriers to sport and activity. The physical, mental and social benefits of sport are widely reported and can be even more impactful for disabled people. CP Sport have been highlighting these findings during March, CP Awareness Month.  It is clear from our members that nothing can truly replicate the feeling and social benefits of taking part in real life sport groups and activities.

Information for disabled people and returning to sport can be found below.

Sport England provide helpful guidance on returning to activity:  https://www.sportengland.org/how-we-can-help/coronavirus/return-play/inclusion-and-accessibility-guidance#guidanceforspecificaudiences-10606 

Activity Alliance resources include a guide on reopening activity in an inclusive way 

We all have a role to play in making sure our return to sport and physical activity is as safe as possible. The latest government guidance can be found here

Volunteers have a vital role to play in helping to ensure the safe return for many sports and activities when coronavirus (Covid-19) restrictions are eased. Click here to read more.

CP Sport events 

CP Sport events and activities are anticipated to commence in the summer. The National CP Football League committee are aiming for summer activity for league teams and more information will be shared once confirmed and agreed by the committee. All other sport events once finalised will be in our events calendar https://www.cpsport.org/events/?summary=all  and we are also looking forward to working in partnership with many more organisations and sport national governing bodies this year to bring even more opportunities for people with cerebral palsy.  

Clubs providing sport and physical activity are also invited to register for our new club finder, and can find the CP Sport Club Finder Agreement here. A member of the club will need to sign up to its free Coach and Officials or Volunteers Membership here. For more information about the club finder contact richard.kerr@cpsport.org  

For adults with cerebral palsy looking to kick start their healthy habits Cerebral Palsy Sport and Adult CP Hub have created a 12 week programme starting on 12th April. It is aimed at those who want a more general activity programme to get moving this spring. Expert guidance and support from both organisations will help participants progress through the challenge, celebrate the successes and motivate through the stumbles to develop healthy habits. People can register their interest and find out more here: https://www.cpsport.org/events/?category=Sport%20Events  

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About Cerebral Palsy Sport 

CP Sport is the country’s leading national disability sports organisation improving the health and emotional wellbeing of children and adults with cerebral palsy through physical activity, and engaging the community in a number of programmes and interventions.  

About Adult CP Hub:  

Adult CP Hub was established to create a home for adults with Cerebral Palsy and put their needs at the forefront of the minds of the medical and research community. Their dedicated team of medical professionals are always on hand to help and support those with CP including physiotherapists, neurologists, therapists and more. 

Return to play information:  

Sport England guidance: Frequently asked questions on the national coronavirus restrictions | Sport England 

Swim England guidance:  https://swimming.app.box.com/s/aydu72bn10zwui6mgv34pmi8od8e9ko7/file/722439264480 

England Athletics guidance: https://www.englandathletics.org/athletics-and-running/news/guidance-update-2021/

The Lawn Tennis Association guidance https://www.lta.org.uk/about-us/tennis-news/news-and-opinion/general-news/2020/march/coronavirus-covid-19—latest-advice/#england?utm_campaign=corporate_announcement&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter&utm_content=coronavirus-29-march

Football Association guidance – https://www.thefa.com/news/2021/mar/24/fa-guidance-for-return-to-grassroots-football-20210324 

Advice on reopening for clubs please refer to the Activity Alliance document Reopening Activity: An inclusive response:  http://www.activityalliance.org.uk/how-we-help/resources/reopening-activity.   

Contact info@cpsport.org for any questions about return to play.