Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Club Kit - Achilles Heel

This is just a reminder that club competition vests and all of our other training gear can be bought online from our sponsors website at this link.

The shop is currently open for business but you have to book before attending.  If you plan to visit in person, you can book at this link.

Club vests are not compulsory for our Together Apart District series but they are for all other events organised by Scottish Athletics.

 

Together Apart Districts

Entries are invited for our Together Apart Districts series.  We’ll be hosting our own Track and Field events at Scotstoun Stadium on Thursday the 20th of May, Saturday the 22nd of May and Tuesday the 25th of May.

The events are open to all of our athletes from U13 to Seniors.  We’d like to see as many of our athletes as possible getting an opportunity to record an early season personal best performance.

Athletes can enter a maximum of two events on each of the three dates.  There is likely to be a high demand for places and everyone is advised to enter early as we may invite guests to fill any gaps.

Both the Thursday and Tuesday sessions will be track only events with all field events being held on the Saturday.

The events will be organised by graded officials and performances will be shared with Scottish Athletics and the Power of Ten.

These events are only for 1st and 2nd claim members of Victoria Park City of Glasgow or athletes from other clubs who’re currently paying training fees to the club.

Training will be cancelled on these dates to allow the officials to prepare for the competition.

All competitors will need to be members of Scottish Athletics.  If you’re not currently a member, you can join at this link. The current cost of a membership for U13’s is £9 per year.

To enter these events, you should login to your LoveAdmin account and click on “Events” on the menu bar.  The three sessions should be at the end of the list.

Under the current Covid regulations, athletes aged 18 and over are not allowed to compete in track endurance events.  We are however inviting these athletes to enter now, ahead of a possible change to the rules from the 17th of May.

More information about the Together Apart series can be found on the Scottish Athletics website at this link.

Scotstoun - A Field of Dreams

Participating v Spectating.

Here is why I care about Scotstoun and the ongoing debate on usage between athletics and rugby.

For generations of young Glasgow sportsmen and sportswomen Scotstoun Showgrounds provided a field of dreams as they aspired in their sporting careers through school and club.

I was very fortunate, as I was one of them from school at Glasgow Academy, then through the medium of Victoria Park AAC now Victoria Park City of Glasgow who have been there for over 90 years.  I cannot claim to speak for them but I can certainly speak of them

The current Club came about following an amalgamation between Victoria Park and City of Glasgow Athletics Club.Hugh Barrow

This Club and its predecessors provided our City and Scotland with generations of international competitors who competed with distinction, winning honours at Olympic, European and Commonwealth level, very much the level that the Warriors currently aspire to.

It saddens me, that in recent times, the arrival of Glasgow Warriors has caused conflict.  When the move was announced, I thought that it would present a wonderful opportunity for both sports to work together, in fact I said as much in articles written at the request of the Warriors Press Officer of the time Mark Palmer (now Rugby Correspondent Sunday Times) and posted on the official Warriors website in August 2012.

Athletics and rugby have coexisted in Scotland since Victorian times with many examples of overlap personified by the likes of Robert Stronach, Eric Liddell and Frank Dick.  In fact many of the founder clubs of the Scottish Amateur Athletics Association in 1883 were rugby clubs like West of Scotland, Glasgow Accies, Watsonians and Edinburgh Accies.

At the end of the days march, Scotstoun is a publicly funded sports facility for the benefit of all, it is not a dedicated rugby stadium built and funded by Scottish Rugby, albeit they pay a rental as tenants.

The Warriors have brought great honour to Glasgow in recent times but this should not be at the expense of other users.

Athletics and rugby can thrive together with goodwill, good management and mutual respect, the last being one of the SRU's core values and after all, much of the modern fitness programmes used in rugby are based on athletics principles of yesteryear.

One of the Warriors favourite sons and Scottish Cap, now rugby pundit John Barclay, may owe some of his sporting ability to his father Graham who was a British Youth High Jump Champion and a member of Victoria Park.

I am not blind to the pressures of the modern professional rugby era, having been involved since 1997 with Glasgow Hawks, a club that has provided the Warriors with a steady flow of players, probably more players than any other club, the latest being Ross Thompson.

Just as Warriors want to follow their ambitions into Europe on the pitch so do others on track and field and now with Rugby Sevens included in the Olympic programme the synergy is complete.

The Warriors have a huge opportunity to build bridges with athletics as they have the professional setup which other users do not enjoy.

Let's hope this opportunity is grasped for the benefit of sport in our City and that this leads to more honours on pitch, track and field.  Surely that's what we want to see, Athletics and Rugby flourishing side by side.

It would be a tragedy if through Rugby's pursuit of finding the next Finn Russell, Athletics are denied finding the next Laura Muir.

Here lies the dilemma; is the purpose of Glasgow Life to provide facilities for a professional sports franchise with emphasis on spectating or is it providing facilities for community sport with the emphasis on participating.

I hope Glasgow Life will stay true to the Legacy of Glasgow 2014 where the increase in participation was at the beating heart of the endeavour and should still be post COVID.

 

By Hugh Barrow - Past President of Victoria Park A.A.C

 

 

Return to Training

I’m delighted to tell you that after another extended shutdown because of the Covid-19 pandemic, training will finally resume at Scotstoun Stadium from Monday the 15th of March 2021.  

Since you last trained at Scotstoun, we’ve had to make a few changes to our training regime to allow us to return to the track.  We’ve listened to local government advice and been advised by our governing body at Scottish Athletics to make everything as safe as possible for our members and volunteers.

For those who were training at Scotstoun in October, November and December last year, there is very little change to our procedures and hopefully you’ll be familiar with the practice.

Risk Assessment

A full and detailed risk assessment has been prepared for our coaches and volunteers and it can be accessed via our website at:  http://www.vp-glasgow.com/rules/risk-assessment-covid-19.html

Group Size

For U12's we’ll be restricting our group sizes to 12 athletes per coach and a bubble size of 30, our U18's are restricted to group sizes or bubbles of no more than 15 and our seniors are also restricted to group sizes of 15.  Although the athletes will be allowed to train in the same space as their peers in their training bubble, our coaches and volunteers will have to maintain physical distancing.

The track and infield will be divided into smaller spaces for sprints, hurdles and conditioning while the numbers running in lanes 1 and 2 will be reduced to allow 5m between each of the groups involved in repetitions of the track.

Booking System

A booking process has been introduced through our LoveAdmin system.  No longer will athletes be able to attend sessions without first booking online.  These bookings will repeat on the same day of the week until cancelled (by email).  Please only book sessions if you’re committed to attending.  A separate word doc will explain this procedure.

There is no longer a limit to how many sessions you can attend but you must first make sure you’re on the register by booking.

If you have previously booked to train with a specific group on a specific night, you don’t need to repeat this process unless you’re adding an additional session.

Attendance Register

Once you’ve signed up to attend our group sessions, you’ll be added to an attendance register which can be accessed at each session by your coach.  Your attendance will be recorded on the LoveAdmin app and the information will be retained for one month.  Our admin team will be able to access the register should there be any enquiries from the NHS.

Travel

The only group that are currently unable to cross local authority boundaries for organised sport are our members who are 18 years of age or older.  Athletes U18 years of age are allowed to cross into another local authority area for training.

Rendezvous Point

Prior to your attending at the track for the first time, you’ll receive an email directing you to a rendezvous point within the stadium where you’ll meet your coach and the remainder of your group.  You should remain physically distanced from your group until you’ve had a safety briefing from your coach.

Your coach will direct you to your dedicated training area.  You should leave any additional clothing and drinks at your rendezvous point.  Please ensure that all water bottles and clothing are labelled.

Equipment

Only coaches will be allowed into the equipment store.  Athletes will be encouraged to use their own equipment if possible.

Starting blocks can be used and if shared, they must be cleaned with anti-bacterial wipes/spray.  The track where the athlete has placed their hands will also be cleaned.

Throwers will be supervised cleaning their equipment at the start of the session and their hands cleaned using hand sanitiser.  Equipment will be marked with coloured tape and no sharing of throws equipment will be allowed.

A table will be situated at the entrance to the store with anti-bacterial sprays and wipes along with hand sanitiser.  The table will be sprayed and wiped down with anti-bacterial solution.

Hurdles can be used but must be cleaned with anti-bacterial solution or wipes before the session and Hurdlers must clean their hands regularly throughout the session.

Anyone handling equipment of any kind should clean their hands regularly.

At the end of every session, all equipment will be cleaned once again before it is stored away.

Long Jump

The long jump pits will be covered when not in use.  Athletes should sanitise their hands before their first jump and after each subsequent jump.

Only the coach or a selected athlete will handle the measuring tape or rake during the session.

After every jump’s session, the sand will be sprayed with sterilizing fluid and the sand raked and turned.  The pit will not be used for a period of 15 minutes before the next session begins.

Toilets

We’ll be using the toilets at the east end of the small North Stand.  Children are advised to go to the toilet before they attend but if they need to go, they should ask their coach for assistance.

Only one person is allowed access to the toilets at a time and hands should be washed with soap and water or anti-bacterial solution before returning to their group.

Covid-19 Symptoms

Before attending any of our sessions at Scotstoun, members or their parents should ask themselves the following questions:

  • Are you experiencing a persistent (dry) cough, fever or a lack of taste or smell?
  • Does anyone in your household have a persistent (dry) cough, fever or experiencing a lack of taste or smell?
    1. If the answer is ‘yes’, to any one of the above questions or conditions, do not come to the stadium, please stay at home!
    2. if you are shielding, ensure that you follow the advice on your letter which you should have received from the Chief Medical Officer (CMO). 
    3. In addition, everyone will be requested to ensure that they wash their hands for at least 20 seconds before coming to the stadium.

Stadium Access

Anyone entering the stadium will do so via the main gate to the right of the main entrance.  This gate will be controlled by a Glasgow Life leisure attendant.

Please arrive at or after your start time and you’ll be allowed access without queuing, we need to discourage assembling outside the gate.

No access is allowed in the main building or inside track.  Parents are not allowed into the stadium.  They can observe our activities from outside of the perimeter fence at the east end of the stadium.

We’ll have a volunteer in position inside of the main gate to answer any questions and to direct athletes to their rendezvous points. 

Payments

No payments for track access will be taken on arrival.  Members will need to restart their direct debit for track access and coaching fees through our LoveAdmin system.  Members will also receive a reminder if their annual memberships have lapsed.

Leaving The Stadium

At the end of our sessions, members will leave via the same gate at the east end of the stadium which will be manned by a Glasgow Life leisure attendant.

Any junior members whose parents are not immediately visible outside of the gate should wait with our coaches until collected.

Safety

I’m sorry if the details in this email cause you any concern but we’ve made these plans to make the training environment as safe as possible.  Trust in our coaches to do everything they can to make the sessions fun while they develop our athletes for performance and good health.

We expect these restrictions or an amended version to affect us for at least another six months.  We’re determined to do as much as we can to keep our athletes fit and healthy and be prepared to enjoy a great summer of sporting activity in 2021.

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