COVID-19 Update as at November 26th, 2.00 PM (AEST)
Published on 26/11/2020

COVID-19 Update as at November 26th, 2 PM (AEST)
  As you are all aware the COVID-19 information not only from a State and National perspective but also a global scale is evolving constantly.  The health and safety of our Surfing Australia team and your environment is paramount; therefore we will endeavour to keep abreast of updated information and act accordingly in compliance with State and Federal Government advice as it happens.  
High Performance Centre

From 1st July, the latest federal guidelines for indoor sporting facilities allow coaching sessions up to 20 people per session and a maximum of 500 people within the centre whilst adhering to government social distancing guidelines.

Surfing Australia High Performance Centre has a COVID-19 Safety Plan in place. However, if you have visited any of these COVID hotspots within the last 14 days, you will not be permitted in the centre.


Return to Community Sport

Community sporting activities, including training sessions, may recommence, however effective 19 August 2020, in response to increased cases of COVID-19 in NSW, the following recommendations should be implemented to assist in minimising the risk of COVID-19 transmission in relation to participation in community sports.  These updated recommendations will help us to meet the NSW Government’s aim of achieving no community transmission in NSW and will support community sports to continue operating safely:

It is essential that community sports organisations have a COVID-19 safety plan in place,
and are fully compliant with this plan:

In addition, please implement the following updated public health recommendations:
• Cease activities that result in the mixing of participants and staff from different regions, for example by ceasing zone, regional or state championships or competitions
• Cease any activities that result in overnight stays (e.g. multi-day training camps) due to increased risk of COVID transmission in residential-type settings with shared facilities
• Cease face-to-face social activities relating to community sports (e.g. award ceremonies, end-of-season social gatherings, post-training group dinners)
• Avoid carpools or bus travel with people from different household groups 
• For local activities, limit spectators to one parent only, where the child requires parental supervision during the sporting activity.

NSW Government anticipate that these recommendations will need to be in place for the next 6 weeks. We will continue to update you in relation to the continued need for these public health measures.

Sport Australia has launched a suite of practical resources that focus on giving community sporting clubs and associations a roadmap for the safest return to sport, the Return to Sport Toolkit comes with comprehensive checklists, adaptable COVID-19 safety plans and templates that can be used by sporting organisations at any level. It is in step with the AIS Framework for Rebooting of Sport in a COVID-19 Environment and the Australian Government’s National principles for the resumption of sport and recreation activities. 

To help your sport return safely, Sport Australia also calls on everyone involved – participants, coaches, officials, administrators, volunteers, families and the broader community – to take individual responsibility and respect the health of all those around you.

Please download The Return to Sport Toolkit here:

Surf School & Boardrider Club Events

Based on the current advice from the Australian Government in relation to group gatherings, outdoor activity can be conducted outdoors with no more than 20 people with use of outdoor equipment using caution.

Surf School organisations are free to make their own decisions in terms of operation within the Government mandated crowd guidelines in conjunction with their affiliated State Association’s recommendations.

Please refer to your State Health guidelines (see links below) for safe return dates when both Adults & Kids’ sport and community sport competitions can restart.

Recommended hygiene protocols

The protocols outlined below are essential to limit your exposure and prevent the spread of germs, in particular as they relate to COVID‐19: 

Surfing hygiene 

  • COVID-19 or not, do not share rashies, drinks, towels, wax, sunscreen with others.  Boardrider Clubs & Surf Schools – we recommend clubs advise their participants to use coloured T-shirts in place of rashies.  Wetsuits should be cleaned as per the manufacturer’s guidelines after each lesson to reduce the risk of contamination.  Gloves recommended when handing out wetsuits.  Hang wetsuits outdoors.
  •  Place hand sanitisers around change rooms and encourage the use of them.
  •  Ensure all member facilities are maintained and cleaned to a high standard with appropriate cleaning agents – consider more regular cleaning of facilities.
  •  Limit physical contact pre-post event such as avoiding shaking hands, pre or post-event celebrations and BBQs. Boardrider clubs regularly feed their members on the day – we recommend ceasing community eating.
  • It is recommended that Boardrider Clubs send a notification to all participants in advance of events reminding them of hygiene protocol and Boardrider Club event organisers reiterate hygiene guidelines and expectations at the start of the event. 

HPC Employee Wellbeing Whilst the facility is still operating as an essential workplace, we have implemented extra measures within the HPC to protect our team and visitors, all traffic entering the HPC will be encouraged to wash hands and extra sanitiser units are available for use around the centre. 

  • Social distancing measures of 1.5m 
  • Stop shaking hands to greet others
  • Hold meetings via video conferencing or phone call
  • Promote good hygiene, provide alcohol based hand rub for all staff and workers
  • All non-essential travel cancelled 
  • If anyone is feeling unwell or have any legitimate concerns about being at work at the HPC at this time, we recommend they seek medical advice, advise their manager of their absence. Further, any employees who are at high risk from a health perspective should follow the medical advice as per their GP.
  • Providing advice based on Australian Department of Health & State Health organisations to our Board Rider Clubs, Surf Schools & event operators

Future advice  Surfing Australia and State Surfing Associations are keeping abreast as information unfolds from Health authorities and will regularly monitor any changes in the situation and will consider implementing any further measures.

   We will continue to take the advice of the Government and the World Health Organisation and will make preparations based on that advice.  We will continue to review our position and will update the Surfing community via regular updates on our website. 

Links to Government health and WHO below:

We thank you for your patience at this time and appreciate your concerns, however please be mindful that as an organisation we will continue to take the advice of the State Government, Department of Health, the World Health Organisation and will make preparations based on that advice and we will continue to review our position, and will update the Surfing community accordingly. 

   We encourage everyone to stay strong, look after yourselves as we work through whatever challenge is ahead.

Chris Mater


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