Cottingham Fitmums & Friends: Covid-19 update

Posted 17th July 2020

[Updated 9 April 2021]

From Monday 29 March, organised outdoor sport will be permitted once again. This means that Cottingham Fitmums & Friends can reopen.

We will be restarting our Wednesday evening sessions on Wednesday 31 March and our Monday morning sessions from Blue Kangaroo on Monday 12 April.

All of our Covid-19 precautions will remain in place, including booking, groups of six, maintaining a distance of 2m from fellow runners/walkers and from members of the public, and carrying a face covering. These precautions are explained in detail below and are intended to keep our members as safe as possible. So please read (or reread) this info before attending a club session.

Please also note that we are asking members to attend their home club only for now. We will let you know when we are reopening clubs to Fitmums ‘tourism’.

Supporting our members

Things have been tough and we understand that some of our members may feel anxious about returning to club activity or need a little extra support to get active again. We can help:

  • We can arrange a chat with one of our volunteers, on the phone or via Zoom, to put you at ease before you come back to club.
  • We can meet you outside a club session so that you have someone to walk in with.
  • We can put you in touch with one of our In the Pink volunteers who will meet you, talk through how we can support you and attend up to three Fitmums & Friends sessions with you.
  • We can offer financial support through the Mike Barlow Memorial Fund.

All you need to do is get in touch – email Vickie (admin@fitmums.org.uk).

Please read the following information carefully before coming to club. It is split into two sections: the first explains how sessions are now organised, and the second runs through what you need to know and do before coming to a session. You may also find our reopening FAQs helpful.

We hope our approach reassures you as to the safety measures we have in place to protect our members, volunteers and local community at this time. Of course, we are relying on every member’s cooperation to ensure that we stay safe and open.

Thank you.

How are sessions organised now?

Club sessions are held on a Monday morning and a Wednesday evening – details for both are below. While we cannot organise sessions as we used to, we are aiming to offer as much flexibility and variety as possible in order to accommodate all of you who want to return to club sessions.

Both sessions are using a booking system in order to allocate places fairly and in compliance with current restrictions on the number of people who may exercise together.

Monday morning sessions from Blue Kangaroo - open from Monday 12 April

To book a place on a Monday morning session, please complete our booking form. We ask that you complete this form each week that you would like to come to the next club session to let us know how far you would like to run. This will be matched against the leaders we have available and then, on Sunday, group leaders and participants will be posted in the private Cottingham booking Facebook group – please join this group here (if you are not a current member, please contact us first). If your chosen mileage is not available, you may be offered a different mileage or be given priority for the following week. Please note that bookings will open each week on Tuesday morning and close on Saturday evening. For any queries about booking, please email Vickie on admin@fitmums.org.uk.

We are meeting outside, in the car park at the back of Blue Kangaroo – please do not park in the front parking area. This means we have no access to toilets or any other indoor facilities. Start time is 9.30am.

In order to avoid large groups congregating, please go straight to meet your leader on arrival rather than chatting with participants of other groups. You will sign in using Mumbot, so please remember to bring your code for scanning.

Wednesday evening sessions from Cottingham Sports Centre - open from Wednesday 31 March

Bookings for Wednesday evening sessions are done via a private Facebook group and email (cottinghambookings@fitmums.org.uk) in order to reach all members. (If you are not a current member, please email us.) Each week, you will be asked to let us know – by Facebook or email – if you would like to come to the next club session and what mileage you would like to run or walk. This will be matched against the leaders we have available and, if you receive a place, you will be advised in the Facebook group or via email and told where and when to meet and naming your leader. If unfortunately you do not get into a group that week, you will be prioritised the following week.

We are currently offering 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 & 6 mile runs and fitness walk options.

We are meeting outside, in the car park of Cottingham Sports Centre. This means we have no access to toilets or any other indoor facilities.

In order to avoid large groups congregating, start times are staggered between 6.30pm and 6.50pm – your exact start time and meeting point will be noted in your booking confirmation. Please arrive on time. If you are late, we will not be able to accommodate you in another group due to the restrictions on how many people may exercise together.

At your start time, please meet your leader on the grass by the tennis court/5-aside pitch and then sign in using Mumbot – please remember to bring your code for scanning.

For both sessions:

We want all of our members to feel safe at club sessions. For this reason, please make sure that you social distance and follow all other guidelines throughout the session. If a leader, or another member, needs to remind you about maintaining social distancing, please do not be upset by this – it is intended to protect you and your fellow members.

As always, the leader will begin the session with the checklist chat. Please listen carefully as the checklist chat now also includes important COVID-19 messages. So that you can familiarise yourself with these before your first session, please read the new checklist chat here or watch it here.

After the warm up, your group will set out on its run/walk. Please listen to your leader throughout the run/walk. To maintain social distancing, he/she may organise the group by pace before setting off; and may need to give more and firmer directions and instructions on route. These may be spoken or hand signals - which are demonstrated here.

We will be using routes that we have already assessed as being less used by local people and which have more space for social distancing. This may mean that we are using the same routes more often but we hope you will understand why.

Please maintain a social distance of 2m from your fellow runners/walkers at all times. On some of our routes we may not be able to maintain social distancing while staying on the footpath. If this is the case, then please only go into the road when it is safe to do so. If it is not, please slow down or walk until there is space to spread out again – and indicate to those behind you that you are slowing down using spoken instructions or hand signals.

We must also maintain a social distance of 2m from any pedestrians we encounter. It is our responsibility to move out of their way. We will slow down, walk or stop while they pass, making sure to give them at least 2m of space.

To keep the group together, we will shepherd where there is enough space to do so and maintain 2m between all members. Where this is not possible, the front runners/walkers will enable the group to come back together by circling where there is space to do so.

The session will finish with a group stretch – socially-distanced, of course! After that, please go home promptly. We know you will want to stay and chat, but it is important that we don’t have large groups congregating – for your safety and so that our club can stay open. Instead, check back in on our Facebook page here for all the feel-good photos once you get home.

What else do I need to know before I come back to club?

Just a couple of things:

  • Keeping our members as safe as possible and keeping our club open requires every one of our members to comply with current guidance. To that end, we are asking all of our members to agree to our COVID-19 Code of Conduct. Please read this carefully here before attending a club session. By attending a club session, you will be agreeing to abide by this code of conduct.
  • Please bring and carry a face covering with you. You will not need to wear it while running/walking. But if one of the group has a minor accident and needs help to get back to base, we will wear our face coverings so that we can give and receive help. Again, this is to protect you and your fellow members. 
  • Please ensure your emergency contact details are up-to-date in Mumbot.  
  • Please plan to look after your own belongings, including car keys – there will be no key bucket available. 
  • And finally, feel free to wear your Fitmums and Friends kit to club sessions!
Fitmums & Friends kit
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