5 rules for athletes going to the Tokyo Games

Text: Mar Aguilar / Production: Adriana Toca

Between July 23 and August 8, the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games will be held, postponed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. In them there will be no foreign spectators and athletes who come to compete must follow a series of strict measures, among others, the use of the mask and the maintenance of social distance Y not being able to go sightseeing. Athletes will only travel by official transport, they must deliver a detailed activity plan for 14 days as well as a list of the contacts they hope to have in Tokyo. They are not obliged to do a prior quarantine or go with the vaccine in place.

Here are five measures out of many that are designed to help create a safer environment and protect residents of Japan from COVID-19.

1. Vaccines available

Last month the International Olympic Committee announced that Pfizer and BioNTech would donate doses of vaccines against the coronavirus to athletes and country delegations before their trip to Japan. Although it is recommended to get vaccinated before traveling to Japan, it is not mandatory.

2. Frequent tests

Athletes will be tested several times before and after their arrival in Japan. They will also have a daily test to detect coronavirus through a rapid saliva antigen test.

3. No hugs or high-fives

Physical interactions, including hugging, handshaking, and high-fives, are discouraged. Athletes are expected to keep two meters away from others except while competing.

4. No sightseeing

Athletes may only leave their accommodation to go to the official Games venues and to a limited list of additional locations.

5. Use of mask

Athletes are expected to remain in the mask unless they are eating, drinking, sleeping, training or competing. Athletes who break the rules, as well as those who refuse to take the relevant tests, may be banned from competing and their credentials will be withdrawn.

National Public Radio (NPR), the United States’ public broadcasting service, reports that some 11,500 athletes travel to Japan to compete in the Olympic Games, in addition to some 79,000 journalists.

In Japan, only 5% of the population has received the coronavirus vaccine. More than 70% oppose the celebration of the Olympic Games.

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