Youth sports are one of the most influential events in a young kid’s life. Not only do these sporting events allow for exercise and maintaining a healthy lifestyle, but they also teach many important lessons. Learning how to win and lose, leadership characteristics, sportsmanship, and dedication are a few examples of lessons and skills instilled through these sports in the world’s youth population. However, due to the global pandemic, youth sports’ thrilling atmosphere is harder to come by as safety is always the primary focus. But there are ways to continue youth sports, despite the complications of a pandemic.
Many things need to be considered when trying to complete a sports season during a pandemic, with the first being state and local legislature. Some areas forbid gatherings of the size that many of these events would be, so new ways to practice and compete for the need to be discovered. Some areas still allow for play, albeit stricter guidelines to help limit the spread. Each local legislature has its own set of rules for handling the pandemic, and knowing and abiding by these rules should be the first step in getting back to play safely.
Other ways to continue youth sports in the pandemic is by making modifications to the games or practices. Though it can be uncomfortable and more difficult to breathe, wearing a mask on the sideline or bench or even during play is one way that the spread of coronavirus can be slowed and contained. This would help contain the spread of germs from oral communication. Other things to consider with youth sports’ return are the sport’s physicality and how close players are together. Some sports like baseball and tennis allow for great separation between players and competition and do not require excessive physical energy. Sports like these may continue with added precautions to ensure players stay socially distanced during the game. Other sports like football and wrestling that require physical contact and lots of exerted energy may not be as well suited for play during the pandemic. These sports could continue if the focus were shifted to individual skills training. Though much of the desired physical interaction would be lost, athletes could perfect their craft and skills individually.