OTTAWA – Based on continued work with its provincial sections and other key partners, Swimming Canada has released Version 3 of its Return to Swimming Resource Document.
Swimming Canada, in collaboration with provincial sections, the Canadian Swimming Coaches Association, and Aquatics Canada, formed a 16-person Return to Swimming Working Group and published its first version of the document in May. Version 2 was published in July in light of the easing of restrictions due to the global COVID-19 pandemic.
Since then hundreds of clubs and pools have reopened safely based on these guidelines and the respective provincial plans in place. Swimming Canada and each provincial section has continued to encourage the safe reopening of pools with risk mitigation plans in place. To support this, the organization has released Version 3 of the Return to Swimming Resource Document.
“The work by our provincial sections to have swimmers back in the water training and now looking forward to competing has been amazing,” said Sport Development Director Suzanne Paulins. “By creating strong, risk-mitigated return to training – and now return to competition – plans, our community is committed to ensuring we return to the sport we all love in as safe an environment as possible.”
The new version includes more focus on return to competition, including national initiatives to support the return to racing. It also includes more information focused on officials and volunteers. In particular, there has been significant collaboration with Lifesaving Society Canada to outline how multiple swimmers can train safely in a single lane for club training. Risk mitigation is based on Government of Canada standards.
“The collaboration with Lifesaving Society Canada provided an opportunity for our organizations to work together to prepare a joint document outlining how club training can be conducted with multiple swimmers in a single lane,” Paulins said. “Using strong risk mitigation principles, we continue to believe training in our pools can be done safely and responsibly.”
Provincial sections will continue to create their own return to competition plans based on the realities in each individual province, adhering to all provincial and municipal public health information and guidelines.
All return to swimming plans must have strong risk mitigation strategies related to Health Monitoring, Physical Distancing, Equipment Use, Hand and Personal Hygiene, and any other restriction that may be in effect locally.