Frequently Asked Questions

Why did you create #Sport4Recovery?

The COVID-19 lockdown has caused a total cessation of organised sport, which brings tremendous organisational and personal uncertainties about the future of the sports sector that provides a key societal function, substantial physical and mental health benefits as well as an important economic impact contribution globally, nationally and in local communities. #Sport4Recovery is a campaign to convey the importance of sport for mental and physical recovery of people of all ages and children especially, emphasising the power of sport to heal, rejuvenate and motivate.

What is the campaign’s approach? What are its goals?

We speak with a unified voice across the globe and across sports. The goal of the campaign is to work with policymakers to open up organised sport as quickly as is safely possible. The campaign will also emphasise how the early reopening of sport will help the mental and physical recovery of hundreds of millions of people, especially also children. We also believe that sport can serve as a role model for other sectors of society demonstrating and promoting the organisation of safe and disciplined activities. We will be working together with independent third parties to endorse the campaign, such as mental health experts.

Who are the campaign members?

The founding members are: Alliance of European Hockey Clubs (E.H.C.), Basketball Champions League, Basketball Champions League Americas, European Volleyball Federation (CEV), French Swimming Federation, International Basketball Federation (FIBA), International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF), International Motorcycling Federation (FIM), International Ski Federation (FIS), Italian Athletics Association (FIDAL), Italian Golf Association (FIG), Italian Ice Sports Association (FISG), Infront, Le Five, Lega Serie A, MXGP, and Sporsora. We are in continuous discussions with other sports stakeholders and expect to announce other members soon.

The manifesto is rather generic. Why are you not proposing specific solutions?

Every sport has different requirements and are having individual discussions with governments around the world on the unique requirements to open up safely. #Sport4Recovery does not seek to replace those discussions. The campaign’s objective is to put the case for sport to be opened up safely as quickly as possible given the societal, health and economic benefits of doing so.

How does #Sport4Recovery align with more national and regional campaigns and lobbying activities of federations, leagues and clubs?

Most of these activities are focused on urgently needed financial and governmental support to keep the lights on as well as the specific needs of individual sports. #Sport4Recovery has a broader objective of putting the case for organised sport as a whole to be opened up safely as quickly as possible given the societal, health and economic benefits of doing so.

What immediate next steps have you planned?

We will reach out to policymakers to emphasise the importance of opening up sports again safely. We will also engage in a targeted social media and media campaign to raise awareness for the campaign. We also hope that more sports stakeholders will join the campaign and will therefore continue to engage with those key players of sport.

Isn’t it too early to open up sport events? How can you guarantee the security of spectators and participants?

#Sport4Recovery is fully committed to working with governments and health authorities to ensure this is done safely - in accordance with necessary measures such as frequent testing for top athletes, social distancing, defined hygiene measures, as well as monitoring and tracking protocols sanctioned by government authorities. Organised sport is – and must continue to be – carried out under defined rules and regulations through controlled procedures with strict medical and safety protocols to ensure the health and welfare of the athletes and participants. Early discussions about opening up have begun in countries like Germany. This provides a good basis to generate momentum around the world. Without knowing for how long this “new normal” will continue, we must think of a plan B together with governments around the world for opening up sport safely. This is not a sprint it is a marathon.

Why do you single out women’s and disabled sports in your manifesto?

All sports have been severely impacted by the crisis and our objective is for organised sport as a whole to be opened up safely as quickly as possible. In professional sports, women’s and disabled sports have been particularly badly hit given the disparity in funding/commercial environment which is why we have highlighted them. This is also the case for some individual sports with less financial backing. But our overall message is that the crisis has caused massive economic and structural damage to the whole of sport and has restricted the ability of athletes to participate in their livelihoods.

Isn’t there a risk of mixing this campaign with commercial interests?

This campaign is not about commercial interests; it is about bringing back sport, which portrays a vital element for our society’s physical and mental wellbeing, as well as providing economic benefits for society at large. It is about opening up safely and providing concrete solutions in the context of continued social distancing.