Covid-19 guidance

Covid guidance

On this page you will find all you need to know about how to safely return to playing volleyball in line with the latest Covid-19 guidance. 

Please read the overview below which summarises what is and is not possible. Then read the sport-specific guidance related to either volleyball as part of education or wraparound care, outdoor volleyball, beach volleyball, indoor volleyball or sitting volleyball, if that activity can go ahead. Appropriate guidance can be found under the relevant header below.

Further down you will find useful links, downloads and resources to aid your return to play preparations. This includes downloadable risk assessment templates and information on compliance.

Have a question? If you can't find the information below, please check our frequently asked questions page or send an email to info@volleyballengland.org.

Please note this page was last updated on 12/04/2021.

Overview

R2P roadmap v2

Current rules

We are currently in Step 2 of the Government’s roadmap out of lockdown restrictions (click the image above to see an enlarged infographic of what the roadmap means for volleyball). This means that the following is possible:

  • Outdoor volleyball as part of education provision and wraparound care
  • Organised outdoor volleyball
  • Organised beach volleyball
  • Organised outdoor sitting volleyball
  • Organised indoor volleyball for U18s
  • Organised indoor sitting volleyball for U18s
  • Elite training
  • Organised indoor and outdoor volleyball for disabled athletes.

Organised volleyball activity is that which is formally arranged by Volleyball England OR a constituted volleyball club that is affiliated to Volleyball England OR a registered level two (or above) volleyball coach and which follows the sport-specific safety plans (scroll down for more detail). The same also applies to organisations and charities that follow the sport-specific safety plans and complete the event registration process on our website.

Organised outdoor activity can be arranged between up to 16 people per court, with a maximum of 32 people participating in the volleyball session where mixing takes place. For organised indoors activity, there can be a maximum of 15 players under the age of 18 per field of play. These ‘volleybubbles’ must not mix.

Activity that is not classed as being formally organised (i.e. recreational) will need to follow the guidance on outdoor legal gathering limits. Currently, that limit is six people or two different households. 

Anyone acting in a workforce capacity (for example volunteers, match officials, coaches, and instructors) are exempt from the rules on gathering and are not counted in the social gathering limits. However, they must remain socially distanced from players where possible during play. 

It is important for social distancing to be maintained between people who do not live together when not actively participating and, at this point, no spectators are allowed at any activity. This does not apply to carers for disabled people, or adults needed to supervise U18s in a safeguarding role. 

Venues

As previously announced, outdoor facilities can now re-open. Certain indoor facilities can also now open. Head to Sport England's website for more information.

Further along the roadmap

Indoor and sitting volleyball activity for adults will return no earlier than Monday, 17th May. We are awaiting further guidance from Sport England and DCMS to allow us to fully understand the guidance around the return of volleyball in Step 2 and beyond. This page will be updated once that information has been released.

It must be stressed that participants should follow guidance in the following order of priority: Government, the venue in which the activity is taking place, Volleyball England's sport-specific safety plans, and club risk assessments.

Remember the key behaviours of washing hands, wearing face coverings, making space and meeting in the fresh air to help stop the spread of Covid-19.

Volleyball as part of education and wraparound care

Schools volley

Volleyball in schools has been able to resume since 8th March. Whether played indoors or outdoors, the sport-specific guidance for volleyball, beach volleyball and sitting volleyball which has previously been approved by DCMS must be adhered to. That guidance can be found under the relevant header below.

Schools and colleges have the flexibility to decide how sport will be provided while following the measures in their system of controls. This includes before and after school activities where this provision is necessary to support parents to work, attend education or access medical care, and as part of pupils' wider education and training.

Pupils should be kept in consistent groups, with equipment thoroughly cleaned between each use by different groups. Outdoor sport should be prioritised where possible. When indoors, natural ventilation flows (open windows and doors and air con) must be maximised, and attention must be paid to cleaning and hygiene.

More guidance can be found on Sport England’s return to play page. The Association for PE has also compiled a useful guide for PE provision from 8th March.

Outdoor volleyball

Outdoor volley

Outdoor volleyball activity has been able to return since 29th March.

If you have not already, please read the ‘overview’ section towards the top of the page first, then click the image above to read the sport-specific safety plans for outdoor volleyball.

This guidance details measures that must be taken by players, clubs, officials, volunteers, coaches, spectators, and organisers before, during and after outdoor volleyball activity.

Beach volleyball

Beach volleybal

Beach volleyball activity has been able to return since 29th March.

If you have not already, please read the ‘overview’ section towards the top of the page first, then click the image above to read the sport-specific safety plans for beach volleyball.

This guidance details measures that must be taken by players, clubs, officials, volunteers, coaches, spectators, and organisers before, during and after outdoor volleyball activity.

Indoor volleyball

Indoor volleyba

Indoor volleyball activity for juniors has been able to return since 12th April.

If you have not already, please read the ‘overview’ section towards the top of the page first, then click the image above to read the sport-specific safety plans for indoor volleyball.

Indoor volleyball activity for adults will return no earlier than 17th May. We are awaiting further guidance from Sport England and DCMS to allow us to fully understand the guidance around the return of indoor volleyball for adults as part of Step 3.

Sitting volleyball

Sitting volleyb

Sitting volleyball activity for disabled athletes has been able to return since 29th March while indoor sitting volleyball for juniors restarted on 12th April.

If you have not already, please read the ‘overview’ section towards the top of the page, then click the image above to read the sport-specific safety plans for sitting volleyball.

Sitting volleyball activity for adults will return no earlier than 17th May. We’re awaiting further guidance from Sport England and DCMS to allow us to fully understand the guidance around the return of sitting volleyball as part of Step 3.

Risk assessment templates

Covid risk

Organisers of formal volleyball activity must undertake a risk assessment prior to any activity.

As part of this risk assessment, organisers should consider the mandatory and recommended actions from the sport specific action plans (available above) and detail those which are proportionate to the event or activity that is being undertaken.

Template risk assessments for indoor, beach, sitting and outdoor volleyball have been included below as guides. These are editable to allow the risk assessor to take into account specific factors such as location, venue, weather, or even the age of the participants, which may require further detail. Click below to download.

Please note these risk assessment templates were created in October 2020 and may need updating to reflect new guidance and changing circumstances.

Monitoring and enforcement of the rules

As part of the return to play process, greater responsibility has been given to sports bodies such as Volleyball England to ensure compliance with restrictions so that participants are safe. If rules are found to be persistently disregarded, the sport body could be sanctioned and endorsements for sport-specific safety plans withdrawn, leaving group numbers bound to general limits on gatherings.

As a result, Volleyball England has developed a four-stage enforcement process which can be read here. If you have any concerns, please email info@volleyballengland.org.

Useful links and downloads

  • The Government's latest advice on Covid-19 - LINK
  • Volleyball England's FAQ on playing volleyball in line with restrictions - LINK
  • Sport England's FAQ on the return of sport and activity - LINK
  • Get fit and ready to return to court with VOLLEYFIT, our new volleyball fitness programme for members of Volleyball England - LINK
  • Covid-19 Officer role description - LINK
  • [NEW] Return to volleyball (Step 2) webinar recording - LINK
  • [NEW] Return to sitting volleyball webinar recording - LINK
  • Sport England’s guide to creating a risk assessment - LINK
  • CPSU - safeguarding children through Covid-19 - LINK
  • Advice on safeguarding adults during the Covid-19 pandemic from the Ann Craft Trust – LINK
  • Need some help drafting session rules for participants taking part in volleyball activity? Check out Coventry & Warwick Riga VC's website for an example of best practice. The phrase 'By attending the sessions you agree to follow these rules' is key here. - LINK

Question?

If you can't find the information you’re looking for on this page, please read our page for frequently asked questions or email info@volleyballengland.org.