Publication - Advice and guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Phase 2: staying safe and protecting others (physical distancing)

Rules on staying safe and protecting others to help protect the NHS and save lives.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Phase 2: staying safe and protecting others (physical distancing)
Exercise and activity

Exercise and activity

You may meet outdoors with members of up to two other households at a time for exercise or activity. Meeting other households indoors, without a reasonable excuse, is not permitted.

This means that events such as organised races, walking club trips and cycle club rides that would involve people from more than three households are not permitted.

If meeting people from another household outdoors, you should meet only in small groups - no more than 8 people in total at a time, and you should not meet people from more than two other households each day. 

Exercise and non-contact outdoor leisure activities can include:

  • angling
  • archery
  • athletics – running/jogging
  • croquet
  • cycling
  • equestrian - horse riding
  • golf
  • lawn bowls
  • tennis (outdoor)
  • walking
  • water sports

This is not an exhaustive list. Nor does it mean that taking part in one of the activities listed will always be safe.

Use your judgement and only take part in an activity if you can do so safely, maintain physical distancing and not put yourself or others at risk.

Plan in advance and do not take unnecessary risks that may result in the need for medical care or emergency services support. You should also consult the safety guidance for each individual activity before taking part. This can be found on the sportscotland website.

When taking part in activity outside, where possible, avoid touching surfaces with your hands, sharing equipment and touching your mouth and face. Follow advice on the NHS Inform website about hygiene and wash your hands as soon as you get home.

Personal training/coaching

One on one personal training or coaching is permitted if it is outdoors, physical distancing can be maintained, and is with members of your household and/or members of up to two other households.

A coach or personal trainer should not deliver training to more than two households at any one time or provide training to more than two households per day.

When participating in training or coaching, where possible, avoid touching surfaces and sharing equipment and touching your mouth and face.


Indoor sport facilities must remain closed at this time.

Outdoor sports courts are permitted to open. Participants should maintain strict physical distancing at all times when using outdoor sports courts.

Outdoor play parks and outdoor gym equipment can open, but strict physical distancing should be followed. The virus can be transmitted when you touch surfaces.

Different groups of children may use a play park at the same time as each other.  However, children should not use a play park if it is crowded. Please encourage children be considerate of others when making use of facilities.

If children use a play park they should be extra careful about hand hygiene and everyone should use an alcohol based hand rub (hand sanitiser) immediately before and after using the play equipment.

Adults and over 12s accompanying younger children to playparks should continue to distance physically from one another.

Play park owners or operators should take appropriate steps to ensure the safety of equipment and minimise the risk of transmission through users touching contaminated surfaces. This includes:

  • pre-opening checks ensure equipment is safe;
  • signs reinforcing the requirement for good hand hygiene and physical distancing;
  • marking out physical distancing and traffic flow where practical. It is recognised that play parks come in all shapes and sizes and for some signage may be sufficient.

increased litter/waste collection from bins should be arranged if appropriate.

Open facilities without staff, such as outdoor skate parks or cycle pump tracks can be used, provided physical distancing is maintained.

Recreation facilities

Zoos and gardens can re-open their outdoor areas to the public. This must be in line with physical distancing and public health guidance.