Smaller sports organizations in Calgary are struggling to adapt to the province’s new COVID-19 rules – Calgary


Small sports organizations in Calgary are busy finding places where young athletes can train after the province changes rules on youth sports.

On Saturday, the province surprisingly announced that people under the age of 18 can again participate in exercises, classes and conditioning activities. The changes to the COVID-19 rules came into effect on Monday.

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COVID-19: Kids are back in training as restaurants and gyms open in Alberta on Monday

There can only be 10 people in a group including trainers. Everyone must maintain physical distance and masks must be worn except when doing physical activity.

The weekend announcement came just days after Hockey Alberta canceled the rest of the season.

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The Alberta government is adding minor exercise training, gymnastics and dancing to the COVID-19 reopening on Monday

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“It was a bit of a surprise for us, especially since we and Hockey Alberta had postponed the rest of the competitive season about a week later,” said Erika Earle, president of Ringette Calgary.

The announcement has posed many questions to many sports organizations, including “Where can we play?” and “how does it work?”

“We should know whether the 10 players are referring to half or a full ice surface. The entire system as a whole? “Asked Earle.

The City of Calgary is working to open city-owned facilities but cannot guarantee it will happen this week.

“It’s difficult to get this information on a Saturday. Some of the things we need to consider is the staffing impact over the past few months. We need to address them. We need to reach out to our user groups to see what the demand will be, ”said Jarret Hoebers, Calgary City’s Regional Leisure Manager.

He said the hundreds of layoffs his department has seen since the pandemic began has had a big impact.

“We fired just over 700 people. Just over 500 in layoffs. Our last layoffs were in January. Currently we are only working with about 10 percent of our employees on the front lines, ”said Hoebers.

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The director of Sports Calgary said sports organizations were surprised by a lack of communication from the province.

“The lack of communication is very frustrating for everyone,” said Catriona Le May Doan, president of Sport Calgary.

A spokesman for the Calgary Catholic School District said there will be no change to school-based athletics – all of this remains on hold.

Hockey Calgary meets Monday night to determine how a development program will be conducted over the next six to eight weeks and to speak to the arenas that will open.

The director of the Calgary Senior High School Athletic Association said the leadership team will meet this week to discuss the changes.

On January 15th, the organization updated its training information, saying, “Due to the ongoing restrictions in the provinces, it has been decided to extend the suspension of all exercises / training for high school teams until the weekend of Family Day.”

The CALTAF Athletic Association issued a statement Monday morning to its members that the province’s announcement was a surprise and that they would “stay on course”.

“While we welcome this news and consider it a positive step forward, CALTAF took the proactive step last week to provide a refund / credit to our members,” the statement said.

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“AHS assured us that only school sports and one-to-one tuition are allowed and that this restriction will not be lifted until our outdoor season begins.”

“Institutions and associations were surprised by the announcement of the easing of the restrictions on Saturday,” said CALTAF administrator Paula McKenzie. “Again, the rules are vague and can be interpreted by our governing bodies and interior design.

“The total of 10 in a cohort makes it extremely difficult to rent enough indoor hours to drive our 150 members through.”

The Calgary Minor Soccer Association welcomed the provincial government’s announcement to ease COVID-19 restrictions to 10 people.

“We don’t know what it means for football,” the CMSA said in a statement to Global News. “We take the information and process it.

“Right now we are proceeding with the utmost caution and happy children can return to the field to train in small groups, which will benefit both their mental and physical health.”

Shannon Doram, President and CEO of YMCA Calgary, told Global News that while she welcomed the province’s announcement, the situation “is a little challenging with our facilities closed”.

“We are working internally and closely with our partners to find out what we can safely and efficiently resume under the new restrictions,” she said. “It will take us some time to create this plan and then communicate it to our employees, our partners and the wider community.

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“We know these changes are very exciting and we thank you for your patience as we work through this process.”

Doram added that as the rules are relaxed, the YMCA aims to improve its programming but also realizes that it needs to be flexible as the public health situation remains fluid.

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