Return to Football Guidelines and Protocols


last updated March 2021


1. Clubs/teams and umpiring groups/associations must strictly adhere to the current Victorian State Government restrictions.
2. Face masks are recommended to be worn by all Victorians where social distancing cannot be achieved unless they have a lawful exception.
3. It is recommended Coaches and other necessary support staff wear a face mask where social distancing cannot be achieved outdoors.
4. All clubs must have a COVIDSafe Plan (A template can be found on AFL Victoria’s website)
5. Clubs utilising venues with a capacity of over 500 people must publish their COVIDSafe Plan on their website.
6. Each Club must nominate at least one COVID Safety Officer who must undertake the free Australian Government online COVID-19 Infection Control Training prior to recommencement of Club activity. Certificate of completion needs to be emailed to your League Administrator prior to the commencement of activity. Clubs are encouraged to have multiple people take ownership of this role and share the
7. A log, or register, using the approved AFL Victoria template, League template, or an online app such as or similar, which clearly identifies all participants and officials in attendance at each training/playing session must be maintained and available upon request by the League, AFL Victoria or health authorities.
8. Sporting clubs that operate a restaurant, café or canteen within its facility should adhere to the restrictions on hospitality venues. Detailed guidelines of the requirements for cafes, restaurants and food and drink facilities to reopen are available on the Business Victoria website.
9. Communal facilities, such as showers, changing rooms and toilets, can open provided participants abide by the Victorian State Government guidelines to limit close contact between individuals and relevant density quotients are met (i.e. two square metre rule). Cleaning requirements must also be adhered to.
10. Signage must be displayed at the entry to each indoor space outlining the maximum number of people allowed at a single time.


Strictly no sharing of personal items such as water bottles, food or towels
• Personal items need to be easily distinguishable, labelled and kept separate
• Shared equipment, including Club provided footballs, must be wiped with antibacterial wipes or alcohol-based sanitiser prior to and after training and games (do not immerse footballs in water)
• All playing kit and equipment to be cleaned and disinfected between training sessions and games
• Sports medicine staff who share medical equipment must sterilise them between uses, which includes disposable cover/sheet to be used for player massage tables
• Treatment equipment to be wiped down and sanitised before and after each use
• Where modified rules are played, swapping of wristbands is prohibited (players must have their own wristband)
• Where possible, no sharing of officials’ bibs or training bibs without santisation
• Match football will be wiped with antibacterial wipes or alcohol-based sanitiser at each break in the match


•Any attendance at community football training, games and programs by spectators must be strictly compliant with Victorian State Government directions and restrictions including wearing face masks where social distancing cannot be achieved
• Gathering limits will not apply to participants and those reasonably necessary to conduct the training or competition (e.g. players, necessary coaches, umpires and those required for supervision of young children or to support people with a disability)
• Spectators must keep at least 1.5 metres from others
• Spectators entering the ground must adhere to gathering limits of 100 people and follow all requirements for contact tracing procedures including signing in or scanning QR codes
• Reinforcement of social distancing requirements should be displayed prominently by posters or newsletters at all venues and policed by Club officials and Police as required
• Reinforcement of ‘good health’ requirements would be conveyed by posters at all participating sports venues and through a social media campaign
• It is the participating Clubs’ responsibility to monitor crowd social distancing and if required they can liaise with Police to enforce social distancing protocols
• Any non-compliance to the Victorian State Government’s direction and restrictions should be reported to Victoria Police


  1. Prior the the first day of training, ALL parents/guardians are emailed a copy of the club's guidelines for COVID-19 training including the requirement that all waterbottles (If required) along with any towels etc are individually labeled and left at 2 metre intervals along the boundary fence adjacent to the coaches boxes. There is to be NO sharing of food, waterbottles, towels etc. Plastic gloves will be provided to coaches for use when sanitising any equipment.
  2. The club's COVID-19 officer or nominee is present at training from 15 minutes prior to commencement until the last player leaves to ensure that all mandated COVID-19 protocols are adhered to
  3. At the first training session, the players will be given a rundown “Participant Briefing/ induction” so they are clear about the protocols and expectations. The attendance sheet for this session will note that a player has been ‘inducted’. If a new player attends training the following week or another day, they need to be inducted and ticked off before commencing training.
  4. Training times are 55 minute sessions from 4.30pm until 6.30 pm so there is social distancing between training groups at changeover times.
    Coaches arrive at training fifteen minutes prior to training and collect any necessary equipment (footies and cones) from the front of the storeroom.  These will have already been wiped down with hand After training, coaches will resanitise their equipment and return them to the front of the storeroom.

Ground set up and meeting points

  1. In week one of training, a nominated adult (U12 and under) delivers each child to training at the shelter adjacent to the BBQs between Aanenssen and Woodruff Ovals. Players over 12 can make their own way to training or arrive with an adult.  As each child (and adult)  arrives, they are immediately directed (no queuing) to one of four stations; Stations 1 & 2 are the coaches boxes on the west side of Woodruff and Stations 3 & 4 are the coaches boxes on the west side of Aanenssen until each of the four stations has ten players. 
  2. If more than 40 players arrive for a session, the additional players are directed to a fifth training group at the rear of the baseball pitch.  On arriving at their nominated station, the adult with each child adds the child's details to the training sheet (while maintaining social distancing), while the child is given some hand sanitiser.  The adults then move off the oval and remain away from the training area until collecting their children at 5.25pm.

  3. On returning home, team managers / coaches email the week's training sheets to the Club Secretary and the COVID-19 officer – Peter Martin, /

    Between week 1 and week 2, coaches use the week 1 attendance sheets to work out player arrangements for week 2.  They contact their families to advise which training group each child will be in for week 2.  At the start of training for week 2, players and their responsible adults go directly to their training groups to sign in, hand sanitise etc.  Players attending for the first time go to the shelter near the bbqs to be allocated to a group for the session.

    At the end of each week, coaches notify their players of the group arrangements for the following week.

Covid 19 Back to Training Times:

4.30pm - 5.30pm U9 mixed
5.30pm - 6.30pm U8 mixed
5.30pm - 6.30pm U14 Girls


4.30pm - 5.30pm U10 age group (boys and girls)
5.30pm - 6.30pm U12 age group (boys and girls)
6.30pm - 7.30pm U15 Bolts

Seniors and Masters 

4.30pm - 5.30pm U11
5.30pm - 6.30pm U18 Girls

From 9am - U13 Bolts Boys at JL Murphy Reserve
From 10.45am U14 Bolts Boys at JL Murphy Reserve
From 2pm - U16 Bolts Boys SMDJFC
From 2pm - U16 Bolts Girls SMDJFC

Please note:



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