How Amateur Sports Participants Can Protect Themselves From Evolving Health Risks

Amateur sports are a popular recreational activity for teams, schools, leagues, clubs, and associations, but these activities pose an ongoing health risk to coaches, athletes, and spectators.

Given amateur sports' hands-on, close-contact, and team-focused nature, participants must continually adapt their safety practices to ensure that they protect themself and fellow athletes or spectators.

Defending Against Health Risks In Amateur Sports

Amateur sports participants face many tough questions about how to engage in sports activities safely, given ongoing health risks:

  • How can we protect amateur sports employees, volunteers, spectators, and players from the spread of illness?

  • Should attendance be limited at an amateur sports practice and competition?

  • How do we clean and sanitize sports equipment and other high-tough surfaces?

  • How can we safely use shower facilities, restrooms, and locker rooms?

With these questions in mind, AIHA has created this “Healthier Workplaces and Schools eBook” to offer practical advice for amateur sports athletes, coaches, and spectators to reduce the risk of transmitting illnesses like COVID-19. The guidance borrows from the latest advice from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and expert advice from leading health, government, and athletic organizations.

This amateur sports guidance applies to a range of youth and adult amateur sports activities, including lacrosse, soccer, baseball, softball, volleyball (beach or court), basketball, cheerleading, gymnastics, ice hockey, boxing, football, wrestling, swimming, and cycling.

These guidelines share actionable steps to protect amateur sports participants, including information on the following areas:

What amateur sports players and staff can do to minimize the spread of illness:

  • Recommended PPE for amateur sports athletes and staff

  • Self-monitoring practices and how to know if you should not attend a sports practice or game

  • How to safely congratulate another sports team without spreading illness

  • Ways to safely use shared facilities and equipment during practices and games

What amateur sports organizers or employers can do to protect themselves, their athletes, and spectators:

  • Ways to enable physical distancing of amateur sports athletes and spectators, including the use of live streaming of events and limiting the number of in-person spectators

  • Recommended signage to post and announcements to make during amateur sporting events to educate about the ways to prevent the spread of illness

  • Ways to perform staff member and athlete wellness checks, including temperature screenings

Download our “Healthier Workplaces and Schools eBook” today to learn how to participate in amateur sports safely.