New guidelines issued by state health officials now allow youth sports to return for some limited participation.
Youth sports are now allowed to take place when the following two criteria are met:
- Physical distancing of at least six feet between participants.
- Stable cohort, such as a class or team when the participants remain the same, that limits the risk of transmission.
"The new guidelines provide for some participation for youth sports, which is something we know parents, coaches and young athletes have been waiting for, but the No. 1 priority remains the safety of those involved," said Dr. Cameron Kaiser, Riverside County public health officer. "These guidelines should not be looked at as a return to pre-pandemic participation."
According to county officials, sports that can't be played with enough distancing and cohorting are not permitted.
Competitions, including games and tournaments, are still not allowed.
For these sports, only physical conditioning and training are permitted and only where physical distancing can be maintained.
Officials say conditioning and training should focus on individual skill building such as running drills and bodyweight resistance training.
The updated guidelines cover all youth sports, including school-based, club, and recreational youth sports, including but not limited to football, basketball, volleyball, hockey, softball, baseball, soccer, swim, water polo, gymnastics, cheer, dance, and karate.