Summer Soccer Recommendations:
I hope our many soccer families are safe as we wait anxiously to be able to reunite with our teams.
Today, I speak to you not as a soccer coach, but as a physician as I’ve been saddened by what this Coronavirus has done to our city and country with the precious lives lost and the negative impact on the economy.
I think many families are still worried about the Coronavirus and many families have become fed up with the stay at home guidelines. As the City of Bakersfield begins to prepare for the reopening, I just wanted to reiterate that the risk of the coronavirus will still be there until we have a proven vaccination.... and that might be 12-18 months before that happens.
Thus, I’m compelled to make several recommendations for youth soccer as we prepare to resume playing soccer this Summer.
1. All players who have fevers or flu like symptoms are asked to remain at home until cleared by your family doctor.
2. Recommend coaches to routinely check on their healthy players’ status to identify any changes in health.
3. All players and coaches attending practices or games to sanitize before and after the event with sanitizer with 60% ethyl alcohol. (Player can rinse with water afterwards as sunburns can occur).
Families and referees will be kindly asked to sanitize as well.
4. All players to bring their own water and no sharing of water jugs or drinks.
5. No shaking of hands or even tapping of the cleats before or after games. I’ll let teams be innovative on how they want to show their good sportsmanship without any unnecessary physical contact. I was considering a meeting with both teams at half field 6 feet apart with the coach of the team to congratulate each other’s team.
6. Family members from one team are recommended to sit 6 feet apart on their half of the field from the other team’s families.
7. Coaches or assigned team parent will be recommended to sanitize the games balls and provide extra sanitizers at all training sessions or games.
8. Educate our players on proper hygiene and avoidance of putting hands in their mouths.
In conclusion, these recommendations will help keep our players safe. I know many families will have a difficult time returning back to youth soccer due to the financial burdens, fear of the coronavirus, or even lost of interest as we have been home bound for the past month. If any families are struggling to return, please do not hesitate to reach out to your coach or even your soccer club’s board members as they are here to help.
Looking forward to seeing all players playing soccer soon !!!