Golf clubs to reopen from Tuesday, while gyms to be used for individual training only - not classes

Players will be able to play at golf clubs outside of their own county from 18 December, in line with the general easing of travel restrictions from the same date.

A view of members of the public playing golf at Bunclody GC while adhering to social distancing back in May.
A view of members of the public playing golf at Bunclody GC while adhering to social distancing back in May.
Image: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

GOLF CLUBS IN Ireland will reopen to the public from Tuesday 1 December as the country moves from Level 5 to Level 3 restrictions.

Clubs will be open only to players who live in the same county between 1 December and 17 December inclusive, but from that 18 December to 6 January, people will be able to cross country boundaries to play golf in line with the easing of such travel restrictions generally for the Christmas period.

Golf-club pro shops and other affiliated retail can reopen from 1 December, while from 4 December, cafes and restaurants — including club bars that serve food — can also be made available to the public.

“The golf community is pleased that courses can reopen from Tuesday next,” said Golf Ireland CEO Mark Kennelly. “Golfers welcome the opportunity to resume play on a responsible and safe basis, as they did during the May to October period.

“The governing bodies are issuing renewed guidance to our member clubs today and we strongly urge all golfers to continue to fully adhere to these protocols which are aimed at keeping golf and the wider community safe while the Covid-19 pandemic remains such a serious threat. We also ask golfers to fully comply with the wider public health restrictions, particularly the travel restrictions that will remain in place until 18 December.

“Earlier this year, Irish golf demonstrated how our sport could be enjoyed by women and men of all ages in a safe and secure environment. As golf resumes, we hope that golfers enjoy their play but continue to be vigilant in adhering to the safety protocols”.

In the other significant change to sport in Ireland during this upcoming iteration of Level 3, gyms will be permitted to reopen but are to be used only for individual training, and not group classes.

eric-donovan Professional boxer Eric Donovan training at Ultimate Fitness Gym in Ballymount in Dublin. Source: James Crombie/INPHO

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Sport guidelines under Level 3 between 1 December and 6 January



  • Non-contact training only in pods of up to 15 (for example: golf, tennis, horse riding, hunting, Gaelic games, soccer, outdoor basketball).
  • There remains an exemption for professional/elite/senior inter-county sports.


  • Individual training only. No exercise or dance classes (for example: no ballet, gymnastics, basketball, racketball, squash, zumba, drama).

Matches and events:

  • No matches or other sporting events will take place, with the exception of professional and elite sports, approved inter-county Gaelic games, horse-racing and greyhound racing, approved show jumping events, and approved coursing events, which will all take place behind closed doors.

Gyms, leisure centres and swimming pools:

  • Gyms, leisure centres and swimming pools may remain open for individual use only, and with protective measures in place.
  • Swimming classes will be reviewed in January.

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