Return to Sport and Physical Activity - Older Adults

Go for Life participants

Return to Sport Guidelines

As a result of Covid-19, there are significant barriers to the resumption of physical activity for older people. This is linked to increased anxiety, nervousness, loss of confidence, feelings of exclusion, weakening of physical activity related social contact and physical deconditioning. 

We all want to see older people come back to sport and physical activity and we hope the following guidance will help inform, encourage, build confidence and in particular reassure older people as they return to a more active lifestyle, in accordance with the public health guidelines and the recommendations of their own sporting body or organisation. 

  • Consider DATE (distance, activity, time, environment)
  • Limit the number of participants
  • Limit the duration of the activity
  • Consider the contact (proximity, direct touch, equipment sharing) and minimise where possible
  • Train outdoors
  • Consider the use of PPE assisting the individuals who may need extra support or care when transferring to or from their wheelchair, changing clothing, using equipment etc. 
  • Connect with older people to outline the changes that have been implemented. This may help alleviate any feelings of worry or anxiety that participants may be feeling on their return to sport.

This guidance was prepared with the support of Age & Opportunity, who conducted extensive consultation within their sector.

Age & Opportunity, have produced sector specific information on the return to sport and physical activity.

Return to sport infographic containing text and images