AHSAA sharing guidelines for return to play for high school programs

AHSAA sharing guidelines for return to play for high school programs
On June 1, high school programs around the state are set to make their return to play after three months of waiting due to coronavirus. (Source: WBRC)

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - On June 1, high school programs around the state are set to make their return to play after three months of waiting due to coronavirus.

In that time, there have been several questions, such as what will sports look like in the fall. While those answers are unclear, AHSAA Executive Director Steve Savarese is encouraging schools to follow protocol when returning to sport.

“I’m counting on each of you - administrators, coaches, and support staff - and your leadership by following the Alabama Department of Public Health and their guidelines. If we do this, hopefully we’ll be able to have a normal fall season,” said Savarese.

The director was adamant in reminding the public that June 1 is just day one in a fluid and ever-changing situation, and ADPH’s guidelines are in place to help everyone easily and safely transition back into sports.

“It’s not about winning championships on Monday; it’s about learning how to live with the virus in an athletic and educational environment,” said Savarese.

Savarese was joined by AHSAA Medical Advisory Board Chairman Dr. James Robinson, who gave some clarity on what “return to play” will look at, highlighting the athlete’s health and safety as the top priority.

“We also want to remember that these athletes have not been doing much exercise in all likelihood for the last three months, and so when they return to activity, we know athletes are going to take about four weeks to get into proper shape to compete,” said Dr. Robinson. "So maybe start with at least 50 percent of a workout for the first week or so and then progressively increasing after that.”

Before student-athletes can return to practices, they must have the following:

  • Current Pre-Participation Physical
  • 2020-2021 Consent Release
  • Concussion form

Visit the AHSAA’s website for more on the ADPH’s guidelines.

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