Dear valued member of the Badminton family,
I hope you are keeping well and safe during these very challenging times. Families, individuals and businesses have been impacted all over the world due to Coronavirus and our thoughts are with those and their families who are affected.
What began in March as a temporary stop to our everyday lives has certainly changed the world we now live in, with the return to a normality taking a lot longer than we had all first thought. The Road back to the court is not straight forward and will take time to ensure that the members are confident that they are returning to a safe environment.
On Friday the 19th June 2020, the First Minister for Wales announced further easing of restrictions in Wales - The continued lifting of certain lockdown rules– and has given the green light for elite sports people to get back to training.
National Governing Bodies have been preparing Elite Athletes Return to Play Policies to enable our Elite Performers to return to the court with their health and safety being the priority. The first steps for return to elite training now paves the way for further restrictions to be eased for the whole sport in future reviews. Badminton Wales continues to work in collaboration with other National Governing Bodies and our partners for a safe return to our sport.
Four groups have been established by the Welsh Sports Association which are concentrating on the following:
- Outdoor sport – Chaired by Beverly Lewis, Welsh Triathlon
• Indoor sport – Chaired by Kelly Aston, Badminton Wales
• Elite Sport – Chaired by Chris Jenkins, Commonwealth Games Wales
• Facilities – Chaired by Angharad Collins, Torfaen Leisure Trust
Sport Wales, Welsh Government and the Welsh Sports Association are represented on each of the groups. The subsequent recommendations are submitted to Welsh Government officials for discussion and consideration as part of the wider review of the Regulations every 21 days. WG Phased Return Guidance
The Badminton Wales Return to Court Roadmap will give members an overview of the phased return to the court over the coming months. The FAQ section on the website will be updated with frequently asked questions from our members. We are preparing more detailed and specific guidance to supplement the Roadmap document and will publish those in the coming weeks.
As ever keeping active is so important for our physical and mental health, and Welsh sport has a big role to play in helping Wales be active. #BeActiveWales campaign is there to encourage activity and to enjoy the amazing benefits for both mental and physical health.
Please see the following external links that provide some excellent advice and guidance around maintaining your physical and mental well-being:
- Age Cymru has information about staying safe during the COVID-19 outbreak as well as on how to prevent loneliness during periods of self-isolation.
- The British Heart Foundation has some great links and resources for those looking for advice on how to stay healthy during periods of self-isolation.
- The Mental Health Foundation has advice for people concerned about how the COVID-19 outbreak and self-isolation may impact on their mental health.
- Mind has advice for people who might be worried about coronavirus (COVID-19) and how it could affect your life.
Club Solutions website continues to offer practical advice for clubs and is a great tool to support and guide clubs through the pandemic.
The Badminton Wales Team have launched several exciting new programmes that are proving a big hit - Shuttle Time Cymru ‘Badminton At Home’ and ‘Couch to Court’. Please head over to the Shuttle Time Cymru Facebook page and the Development section of our website to download the programme to get started in the comfort of your own home/garden/outdoor courts - all you need is a racket and a friend! Keep an eye on our social media and website to see the full list of our upcoming programmes, projects and initiatives being rolled out over the coming months. These will include the eagerly anticipated AirBadminton which you can read about here. Our Development team will be adapting to whichever social restrictions are in place and aim to get you on court and having fun in the safest way possible.
As we begin to navigate the way back to court please continue to adhere to Welsh Government Guidelines, stay positive, we are in this together and we will get back on court.
Enjoy the weather.
Cadwch yn ddiogel bawb.
Kelly Aston MBE OLY, CEO