Can martial arts and combat sports return?
Contact combat sports can take place provided they follow the Covid-secure guidance set out in the contact combat sport framework and adhere to wider restrictions including legal gathering limits.
Contact combat sports (such as boxing, wrestling and martial arts) need to have their national governing body’s action plans approved in order to resume activity above phase 0 (socially distanced). You should check whether your sport has received approval on the guidance page.
If activities are taking place indoors, the government’s indoor facility guidance will also have to be followed, ensuring the guidance on maximum capacity is followed.
If they’re not listed, you should not take part in combat sports beyond phase 0 (socially distant activities) until they’ve been approved, if approved.
In tier 1 areas, contact combat sports can resume training but contact between participants is limited to pad work only (phase 1). Participants can train in groups of up to six people, in line with the Covid-secure guidance for this phase. Multiple groups of six can train, as long as they do not mix, and the indoor facilities guidance on maximum capacity is followed, alongside any relevant guidance published by the sport’s national governing body.
In tier 2 and 3 areas, contact combat sports are only permitted to undertake non-contact training (phase 0).
Participants can only train individually and there should be no activity with others, including with equipment (such as pad work). Multiple individuals can attend the venue, as long as they train individually, do not mix, and the indoor facilities guidance on maximum capacity is followed, alongside any relevant guidance published by the sport’s national governing body.
Across all alert tiers, exemptions are in place for supervised activity for under-18s, educational purposes, and disabled people.
For more details, please contact the relevant national governing body of your sport, as they’ll be able to provide specific guidance on how their sport can be played/adapted to enable social distancing and adherence to the government’s guidelines.