Aligned to the announcements made by the State and Federal Governments in providing the pathway for a safer return to sport, Bocce Australia (BA) has updated the State of Play set of guidelines for clubs and participants to follow, in conjunction with advice issued by State and Territory Associations (STAs).
Bocce Australia ‘Return to Bocce’ program follows Sport Australia and Lawn Bowls Australia Reboot Sport Framework and we thank both organisations for their support and use of material.
State of play:
Our bocce fraternity has been significantly impacted by COVID-19 and we’re delighted that bocce is resuming in most states as most states continue to ease restrictions on sports including Bocce Sport, unfortunately Victoria has gone into Stage 4 Lockdown.
The situation continues to be very fluid and we must adapt quickly as the situation changes.
As in Victoria, the routine use of a face-covering or mask in the community is currently mandatory in Victoria (state-wide). While in NSW they are seeing some spikes and are encouraging people to also wear masks although it is not mandatory at present, whereas QLD is considering closing it’s borders. We advise our members to stay vigilant and monitor State government announcements for the most up to date COVID-19 news.
Sport and exercise are so important especially in difficult times such as these and it is good to see people being given the chance to reconnect with the sport and their clubs. While we have faced challenges before, this one is different . It is truly challenging, however we must remain positive as we manage our way through this, as better days will return.
The following guidelines are to be read in conjunction with the State of Play (above), Framework for Rebooting sport and the BA COVID Return to Bocce Plan ( available from your State Federation)
State Federations and Clubs:
- The responsibility lies with individual State Federations combination with clubs to ensure that:
- they are fully aware of and compliant with their own State or Territory Government and STA advice, and
- all these guidelines are adhered to and engage any staffing/volunteers required as necessary to fulfil the guidelines.
- Hand sanitiser is to be made available at the entrance to the club and beside each bocce court in use.
- Disinfectant spray must be made available beside bocce racks. After each use, all bocce bowls and jacks must be thoroughly cleaned before being used again.
- Any club bocce bowls that are loaned to players are to be thoroughly cleaned before and after use.
- Clubs may need to implement a booking system to facilitate court bookings, to conform with guidelines. Best practice is that a register of attendees is kept, just in case a communicable illness were to occur.
- Any meetings held on the club premises should employ physical distancing of 1.5m between people and be limited to the number of people determined by the relevant state/territory social gathering limits.
- Where possible, outdoor-accessible toilets should be open. At the very least, hand washing facilities should be available.
- As per the State of Play matrix above
- All players are to use separate bocce bowls and the jacks to be cleaned after each end.
- Other bocce equipment cannot be shared between players (e.g. bocce bowls, cloths, measures etc).
- Disinfectant spray must be made available beside bocce rack boxes and between each use, all jacks must be thoroughly cleaned by players.
- Players should always practice safe hygiene , including washing hands for at least 20 seconds before and after a bocce game.
- Individuals must leave the premises immediately after the conclusion of play and cleaning of equipment.
- Coaching should be limited to no more than a coach and two other people at the time and all practicing physical distancing of 1.5m during the coaching session.
- Roadmap to a COVIDSafe Australia
- National Principles for the Resumption of Sport and Recreation Activities
- Framework for Rebooting Sport in a COVID-19 Environment
SportAus Return to Sport Toolkit:
The toolkit includes:
- Detailed Checklist
- Simplified Checklist
- COVID-19 Safety Coordinator
- COVID-19 Safety Plan
- Attendance Register
- COVID-19 Safety Guidance Posters & Videos
BA and all State & Regional Bocce Affiliates remain committed to complying with advice provided by the Federal Government for all bocce activities under its control.
The states and territories will continue to be responsible for decisions around local restrictions, including those related to sport and recreation resumption, at all levels.
States and territories will also determine progression through the phases, taking account of local epidemiology, risk mitigation strategies and public health capability.
All state and regional federations and their affiliated clubs must also give absolute priority to the safety and well-being of participants, especially for those over 60-years of age.
People at a higher risk of severe illness (those aged over 70 and/or those with chronic medical conditions or compromised immune systems) are encouraged to remain at home whenever possible.
Stay safe and stay healthy!