Many of Western Australia’s elite athletes have now returned to training in preparation for next year’s Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo.
Our State’s best swimmers resumed training at HBF Stadium yesterday thanks to the strong support of venue operator VenuesWest and the State Government.
The Western Australian Institute of Sport (WAIS) is implementing a phased return to operations after being closed due to COVID-19 restrictions.
WAIS has received an exemption from the Closure and Restriction (Limit the Spread) Directions (No. 2) made under the Emergency Management Act 2005 (WA).
The first phase will see the return of the most elite athletes from swimming, athletics, water polo, wheelchair basketball and artistic swimming to swimming training and one on one training for athletics and wheelchair basketball.
Outdoor training in rowing, canoe and sailing is also resuming.
All activities will be strictly controlled and be conducted within all COVID-19 Government guidelines.
Athletes and staff will be required to complete an online education program and before each session will also be required to complete a questionnaire and have their body temperature recorded.
There will be an increase in cleaning, no physical interaction between athletes or sharing of equipment and social distancing protocols will be in place.
The Institute’s resumption is consistent with the recently released National Return to Sport Principles and Framework for Rebooting Sport.
As stated by Sport and Recreation Minister Mick Murray:
“Being able to see how happy our athletes were on their return to the pool shows how important sport is to people’s wellbeing.
“We want to see all sport back up and running and this is another small step in that direction, but we all need to continue to do the right thing so we can take further positive steps.”
As stated by VenuesWest CEO David Etherton:
“This is such wonderful news for our athletes, high performance sport and a number of our high-performance venues.
“VenuesWest is excited to welcome back a number of WAIS athletes and Olympic squad swimmers to commence training at WAIS High Performance Service Centre, HBF Stadium and WA Athletics Stadium this week, the first of many steps back to recovery.
“VenuesWest prides itself on championing the dreams of our athletes by promoting high performance sport and facilitating pathways to sporting success such as the Tokyo Games.”