As of midnight, on Wednesday 21st October, the Republic of Ireland is moving to Level 5 COVID-19 restrictions. These restrictions will remain in place for a period of 6 weeks. The effect of these restrictions on Hockey activity have been highlighted below.
These restrictions will apply to all Clubs in the Republic of Ireland.
Under Level 5, individual training only is permitted, and no matches are to take place. The exemptions to this are:
- Non-contact training can continue for school-aged children, outdoors in pods of 15. This means that at no point during the session should a player come within 2m of another player. Exercises involving tackling (such as 1v1s), marking or match play should not be undertaken.
- Elite sports* are permitted to continue behind closed doors – For Hockey this has been defined as the National Senior Men’s and Women’s Programmes. They are permitted to train and play behind closed doors.
*Please note: This category has been defined by the ‘Return to Sport Expert Group’ which has been established by the ROI government to provide guidance to Ireland’s sporting bodies to prepare for the phased return to sporting activity.
Facilities & Travel:
It is permitted to open outdoor sports facilities for training sessions and scheduled matches for the exempted categories of sport, i.e. high performance. It will also be permitted to open outdoor sports facilities for structured training sessions by school aged children, i.e. those aged 18 years and younger, in pods of no more than 15, under the supervision of designated coaches and in compliance with approved COVID-19 protocols and all relevant public health guidance.
During these training sessions, it will only be permitted for participants and relevant coaching and support personnel to be present. In the case of children’s sport, parents will be permitted to attend for child safeguarding purposes, however they will be required to comply with social distancing and other public health advice.
Under Level 5, while domestic travel restrictions do not allow movement outside of a 5-kilometre radius of home, it is permitted to take school-aged children to club training sessions. Club coaches may also travel to training sessions.
Ulster Hockey has advised that all hockey club training is suspended until 14 November 2020. This coincides with the timing of the NI Executive’s current restrictions. Please check the Ulster Hockey website for the latest guidance.
Hockey Ireland will continue to follow the developments and will respond as soon as possible to any changes in the situation. Hockey Ireland would like to thank all branches and clubs that worked hard to get hockey competition back under the strict protocols. We hope we will be back again as soon as possible.
The Hockey Ireland Return to Play and Competition Protocol will be updated shortly and available at https://hockey.ie/covid-19/
Please see below for current clarification on Level 5.