HCA Midwest Health wants to remind you that as youth sports start back up in some communities, remember these steps to help keep players, coaches and families safer during the COVID-19 pandemic:
Before the sports season starts:
- Check to make sure sports and recreation activities are approved by your local and state government.
- Understand the new safety rules and expectations for participation during COVID-19.
- Each child should have their own cloth face covering, hand sanitizer, towel, water bottle, and tissues labeled with their names.
- All youth athletes should have an up-to-date sports physical before participating.
Prior to practice or games:
- Athletes should stay home from practice or game if they’re feeling sick or have a fever.
- Wash hands before arriving, or use hand sanitizer if soap and water aren’t available.
- Bring labeled (with name) personal sports equipment, water bottle, towel, tissues, hand sanitizer, and cloth face covering.
- Stay in the car or assigned school location until the coach is ready to start practice
- Avoid gathering in groups before practice, maintain social distance and wear a cloth face mask.
During sports practice or games:
- Whenever possible, athletes maintain 6-8 feet of physical distance during drills and conditioning.
- When possible and safe, athletes should each wear cloth face covering–especially on the sideline, in dugouts, and during team chats. However, masks should not be worn during:
- Active exercise.
- Water sports.
- Sports where face coverings could get caught on equipment or accidentally cover eyes.
Avoid these behaviors:
- Huddles, high-fives, fist bumps, handshakes, etc.
- Sharing food or drink with teammates.
- Cheering, chanting, or singing when closer than 6-8 feet from others.
- Spitting or blowing nose without a tissue.
- Store personal equipment 6-8 feet away from other teammates’ equipment.
- Minimize sharing sports equipment when possible.
- Sanitize hands before and after using shared equipment such as balls, bats and sticks.
- Tell a coach if you are not feeling well and leave practice or game with parent or caregiver.
After sports practice or games:
- Sanitize or wash hands.
- Wash cloth face coverings, towel and practices clothes or uniform.
- Clean personal sports equipment and water bottle.
Talk with your child’s pediatrician if you have any questions about youth sports participation safety based on COVID-19 in your community and your child’s health.
Source: American Academy of Pediatrics, American Medical Society for Sports Medicine, and the National Athletic Trainers’ Association. The information contained on this Web site should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances.