Uganda held the meeting on Zoom ©UOC

The Uganda Olympic Committee (UOC) held a panel discussion on wellness and health in sports, both during and after the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Zoom meeting was run in conjuncture with the Commonwealth Games Association of Uganda and the National Council of Sports (NCS).

Those on the panel included medical practitioners and sports administrators from Uganda and abroad.

UOC Medical Commission member Nana Nakiddu, NCS Council member George Galiwango, secretary general and chief executive of the Zimbabwe Olympic Committee Ann Muguni and founder of Timneth Wellness Hub, Andrew Etuket, were among those involved.

William Blick, the UOC President and an International Olympic Committee (IOC) member, made the opening remarks to the 114 participants in attendance, with guests viewing from countries including São Tomé and Príncipe, Kenya, Rwanda and Burundi.

Representatives from National Federations were also on the call as well as those from the continental Olympic body, the Association of National Olympic Committees of Africa (ANOCA).

Some of the representatives and media in the meeting ©UOC
Some of the representatives and media in the meeting ©UOC

Blick noted that COVID-19 had disrupted sport in the nation and on the continent, but he remains hopeful of its return.

He gave examples of nations which have begun to ease lockdown restrictions, and called for vigilance when rules are lifted.

Yassine Yousif, the continental manager for Africa from the IOC, said the worldwide Olympic body was working closely to provide information as soon as possible in cooperation with the World Health Organization.

Etuket spoke about the three pillars of nutrition, exercise and sleep in a presentation about peak performance, while Nakkidu outlined the responsibilities of athletes and their personnel.

Galiwango explained the challenges that faced athletes who are injured during lockdown – not just through a lack of facilities that athletes rely on more when rehabilitating, but also how they are being treated during the pandemic with many unable to visit medical centres.

Muguni mentioned a similar cooperation programme in Zimbabwe, where initiatives are based on a collaborative effort.

In Uganda, there have been 222 confirmed cases of COVID-19 to date and no reported deaths.