Being safe while training outdoors

2020-05-20 06:02
PHOTO: SourcedIf using the window period to exercise and train, citizens must adhere to the regulations.

PHOTO: SourcedIf using the window period to exercise and train, citizens must adhere to the regulations.

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ON May 1, the country downgraded to alert Level 4 of the national lockdown. The purpose of the lockdown was to reduce the risk of South Africans catching Covid-19.

The move from level five to four saw the easing of regulations, one of which includes the allocation of exercise between the allotted hours (6 am to 9 am).

The public can use this time to run, walk or cycle within a five-kilometre distance from their residence, while maintaining adequate distances, wearing a mask, and not part of a club or group.

For those making most of this introduced period, it is important to remain safe during this period. Speaking on this, a SAPS communications officer, Captain Linzi Smith said: “Any person training/exercising/cycling you can make the most of your morning workouts by fuelling yourself correctly, taking the right safety precautions, and staying motivated.”

“As winter is approaching it is dark at 6am.

If you plan on being outdoors there are some extra safety precautions you need to take.

For starters, it is crucial to wear reflective clothing, bright colours, and possibly even a headlamp, to make sure that people can see you.

If you go jogging it can also help to stay in well-lit areas.

Masks are compulsory as well as social distancing and no groups are allowed.

This is in line with the Disaster Management Act (DMA).” “It is important to stay aware of your surroundings.

You may want to ditch the headphones, or wear only one headphone with your music on a low volume so you can hear your surroundings.

Anytime you are away from home, it is a good idea to carry some essential items with you, and this is particularly true when it is still dark,” added Smith


· Identification: Carry some form of identification on you, so that any bystanders will know who you are and who to contact in case of an emergency.

A medical aid card can also be beneficial. Most exercise gear has small pockets for this very reason.

· Mobile tracking: Find out from your security company if they offer a mobile tracking app which can be downloaded on your cellphone.

This is an effective way of alerting emergency service providers when you need them while also giving them your accurate location, especially if you are running or hiking along a mountain path or in a forest.

Remember of course that lockdown regulations may have some limitations on where you are allowed to run or train.

· Tell someone: Another good idea is to ensure someone you trust knows that you are headed out for a run or cycle, has an idea of the route you plan to take and when you should be returning.

In this way, they can quickly raise the alarm if you do not return as planned

· Vary your routine: Changing up your route and training time makes it difficult for any would-be criminal to anticipate your movements.

The change in scenery can also make the physical exertion more bearable.

· Charge your phone battery: Make sure your cellphone battery is fully charged so that you are able to call for help in case of an emergency. It is also important to save the correct emergency contact numbers on your phone so that you can quickly contact the police, your security company or your neighbourhood watch when you need them.

· Train with someone: It is always better to walk, run or cycle with a friend. Ensure you maintain the correct social distance at all times and wear a mask.

Be aware of the lockdown

regulations and any limitations that

might be in place relating to groups training together at once.


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