The Surf Life Saving nippers program will look a lot different this year in a bid to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The Surf Life Saving nippers program will look a lot different this year in a bid to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Nippers hit the sand again with new COVID-safe rules

Surf lifesaving clubs have been given the green light for a modified return to their summer nippers season, but things may look a little different.

Sunday mornings will no longer be the same for nippers, with NSW Health's COVID-safe rules dictating there be a limit of 500 kids on the beach at a time, short­ened activities, barricaded areas and limited age groups.

Bondi Surf Club nippers (from left) Neve Davey, Krishna Inder and Shanti Inder hit the beach. Picture: Sam Ruttyn
Bondi Surf Club nippers (from left) Neve Davey, Krishna Inder and Shanti Inder hit the beach. Picture: Sam Ruttyn

Bondi Surf Life Saving Club's director of nippers, Narelle Moore, said it was important the nippers program went ahead to ensure clubs were still training ­future beach patrollers.

"It's extremely important we do everything we can to get nippers running as our program develops lifesavers for the future," Ms Moore said.

"The final year of nippers feeds kids into senior ranks to become bronze medallion patrolling members, so if the children don't have the ­opportunity to continue their training, they can't receive their surf rescue certificate."

Due to new restrictions meaning parents can no longer assist kids in activities, the under-6 competition has been cancelled for Bondi Nippers and many other local clubs.

"This was a difficult decision … we want to make sure our younger age groups are engaged and excited about nippers," she said.

"We're hoping to run a holiday program."

The Bondi Nippers has not missed a season since it began more than 50 years ago and Ms Moore said they were doing everything possible to ensure they hit the beach on October 18.

Originally published as Nippers hit the sand again with new COVID-safe rules



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