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Discussion: Alone and outdoors: Oriente...

in: BorisGr; BorisGr > 2020-11-12

Nov 14, 2020 1:00 AM # 
Alone and outdoors: Orienteering is a good sport to take up in a pandemic :)

Plus, you guys are good at setting up fun, welcoming events.
Nov 17, 2020 7:26 PM # 
From "" (Google Translate):

Only one case of corona infection was found after 787 Japanese distance running competitions with over 600,000 people involved. It shows a new comprehensive study published by the Japanese Athletics Federation.

- It's not entirely surprising. We have always said that outdoor sports where you are not particularly close to each other, that there the risks are obviously very small, says state epidemiologist Anders Tegnell to Orienteringsmagasinet.

Recently, the Japanese Athletics Federation published the results of a study that examined 787 national distance running competitions during the period 1 July to 4 October this year. In total, more than 570,000 runners and almost 100,000 officials were included in the study.

The results show that only one case of positive covid-19 was found in the next two weeks after one of the 787 national distance running competitions took place.

According to state epidemiologist Anders Tegnell, the results of the study are not surprising. Tegnell believes that the risk of infection for outdoor sports that are not a contact sport is small.

- It's not entirely surprising. We have always said that outdoor sports where you are not particularly close to each other, that there the risks are obviously very small. This sounds just like that type of sport, says Anders Tegnell to Orienteringsmagasinet.
Nov 18, 2020 11:23 AM # 
Those are astonishing numbers, given that the prevailing 14-day infection rates in Japan have been in the order of 1 in 10,000, so you would have expected 50-100 cases in two weeks purely by chance.
Nov 18, 2020 2:15 PM # 
Well, they live in very crowded places so infection would be more common indoors I guess. The outdoors are safer, but we don´t know (without reading the report) what precautions were taken for transport, change rooms etc. where the main risk would be.
Nov 18, 2020 4:57 PM # 
I think the implication is that somehow the people participating in running events are less likely to be infected than the general population. Certainly infection during a running race already seems highly improbable, but if there's something about the social status/behavior of the participants that makes them unlikely to be infected in the first place then that's even better news for everyone there.
Nov 18, 2020 5:46 PM # 
Is there an additional factor that people who are feeling any symptoms are much less likely to participate in a running event?
Nov 18, 2020 6:12 PM # 
Could definitely be, but also weird that basically nobody was infected in the weeks following, unless they were like, "oh I ran a race, I should isolate for two weeks".
Nov 19, 2020 2:40 AM # 
Yes those results are unbelievable, and very favorable for orienteering. But I'd be reluctant to run with this (edit: accidental pun) without better understanding what exactly was studied and what exactly the results were. It's so unbelievable, that I'm skeptical that we're interpreting this right. Could be we're reading too much into the short summary bubo passed along, or Google Translate didn't quite get it right, or the Swede who wrote it up didn't get the wording quite right, or there wasn't effective communication between those who performed the study (in Japan) and those who did the writeup (in Sweden), or ... you get the idea.

I hope there's somebody in the orienteering community in North America who is qualified (ideally epidemiologist but at least some sort of medical / bioscience competence--and has a little time to poke around in this!) and who can investigate and report back to our community exactly what the study protocol was, what the results were, and if possible some sort of opinion on what it might mean to our situation.
Nov 19, 2020 3:02 PM # 
I´ve got the same questions as o-maps and I tried to find the original study online - hopefully in a language I could understand. No hits on Google though and that may be telling us that it´s published in Japanese?
The Swedish text and the Google translation correspond pretty well, nothing is missing or has been made into something else. Since I couldn´t find the original study I can only hope the Swedish text I have read depicts matters correctly.

On a similar note - there was a major motor cycle race organized in Sweden earlier this fall. They had over 2300 starters and I found it very strange that they were even allowed to go through with it at all considering the temporary restrictions on the number of people allowed to gather in one place. The answer to that is that they were doing this on private land (military ground) that doesn´t have to follow the same rules and the police had no say on the matter. Very strange all the same!!
A later report say that at the time of the report (two weeks ago) only one case of covid had been found related to GGN locally, but the total number may never be known since people were coming from all over Sweden.
Nov 19, 2020 8:48 PM # 
Article about the Japanese study.

The way it's written up here makes it sounds a bit less unbelievable, confirming more that there weren't any clusters that could be attributed to running races but not much else.

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