Lockdown exercise rules could be relaxed to ease the pressure on our physical and mental health.
Boris Johnson has asked officials to draw up options for a slight lifting of the rules, which currently limit people to meeting one other person for outdoor exercise once a day.
It comes as earlier this month the Prime Minister was spotted cycling in the Olympic Park, seven miles away from Downing Street, despite Government restrictions limiting exercise to once a day and ‘you should not travel outside your local area’.
Last week Johnson announced the lockdown would continue until at least March 8, with schools set to be the first facilities to reopen.
Boris Johnson has asked officials to draw up options for a slight lifting of the rules, which currently limit people to meeting one other person for outdoor exercise once a day
Government sources have cautioned that the exit out of lockdown will be slow, with shops, gyms and hairdressers possibly opening in April.
And Government scientists say that pubs and restaurants may be unable to open until May.
But a source familiar with the PM’s thinking said: ‘Schools will be first and everything else will have to take its place after that. The only exception might be exercise. The PM keeps coming back to social contact – is there anything we could do to help a bit? Could we do a bit more on exercise to help with people’s mental health? That is being looked at.’
Government sources have cautioned that the exit out of lockdown will be slow, with shops, gyms and hairdressers possibly opening in April
Possible options include allowing people to meet a friend from another household for outdoor exercise more than once a day.
Alternatively, socially distanced exercise could be permitted in groups of three or four – although this is thought to be harder to police.
Officials will also examine whether outdoor sports that can be social distanced, such as golf and tennis, could be allowed to resume. However, a source said that was unlikely at this stage.
A Cabinet Office task force has begun work on a new ‘road map’ out of lockdown, which will be published in the week beginning February 22.
And Government scientists say that pubs and restaurants may be unable to open until May
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