Fall is here, and for many people it’s a time to get involved in a variety of sports. Team sports are a source of physical and mental well-being for both children and adults and create a sense of belonging and community. Recent changes in Washington’s Safe Start plan have opened up more options for youth and adult team sports.
Which sports are riskiest?
Team sports have been placed into risk categories, based on how much potential for close contact they have. The risk categories for sports include:
What’s allowed or restricted?
All counties are able to participate in all sports to a certain degree, but high-level counties have more restrictions than low-level counties when it comes to some activities like tournaments or scrimmages.
Washington counties are also placed into categories based on COVID-19 activity:
What does this mean for Whatcom County?
Whatcom County is currently a moderate-level county. This means that scrimmages and league games are allowed for low- and moderate-risk sports, and high risk sports are only allowed to have competitions that involve their immediate teammates. No tournaments are allowed, and no spectators are allowed, aside from one adult care-giver for children. These changes have been made at the state level, but local leagues may continue to remain closed. Check with your local leagues for any updates on their sports programming.
What hasn’t changed?
It’s still important to take action to prevent the spread of COVID-19 whenever possible while participating or having involvement in team sports.
Exercise and physical activity can increase respiratory droplets that you breathe out when you are breathing heavily, so it’s especially important to follow guidance that will reduce the spread of the virus.
We are on our way towards slowly reopening and restarting those events and activities that have been important parts of our lives. It’s worth celebrating when we can take another step forward, but also requires us to keep up the hard work we’ve been doing. So keep masking up, maintaining six-feet of physical distance, and keeping your gatherings small, so we can continue our progress toward reopening Washington.