CUSD Allows Sports Practices to Return While Following CoronaVirus Guidelines

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Kaitlyn Kittredge

Haley Juarez (10) and Alexa Bradford (10) wearing their masks, while waiting for their social distanced soccer practice at the Badlands to begin.

Kaitlyn Kittredge and Hannah White

With Covid-19 stripping students from their classroom desks, school dances, and relationships with their peers, sports are finally making their way back into students’ lives.

Teams are finally able to have contactless, unequipped practices all centered around accommodating the CoronaVirus. 

Small training sessions are now allowed, while following the code of conduct for CUSD guidelines. In phase one, teams will be separated into groups depending on the size of the outdoor facility they are using. 

CUSD released a document stating the precautions that must be followed in order to continue with sports, which was sent out as an email to the sports teams. Some of the regulations include daily temperature checks and Coronavirus related questions. 

“Athletes and coaches will be screened daily for signs/symptoms of Covid-19 prior to participating. Responses to screening questions for each athlete and coach will be recorded and stored.” 

Masks are required when walking to and from the field and there are no spectators allowed. Due to the fact that equipment is prohibited in stage one of this plan, sports teams are focusing on a lot of conditioning and distanced, individual workouts. 

I’m excited for the moment we can completely return back to normal and I hope we can eventually have a season that will be one to remember,”

— Brown

“When we arrive at soccer practice we are required to wear a mask and have our temperatures taken. Our practice consists of social distancing drills and lots of conditioning due to the fact that we can’t use equipment,” said sophomore, Haley Juarez. 

“Practice is very different from the previous years. During this pandemic, we run in groups of less than ten people on our assigned days. For most of the week we run independently and log our running times on an app called ‘VDOT O2’, so our coach can check on our progress,” said senior, Diego Harrison, a four-year cross country runner. 

Because sports were not cleared to return during the summer, the fall and winter sports were not able to hold try-outs or summer league. As a result that teams could not train during the summer, many athletes had to depend on themselves to stay game ready through a pandemic. 

“This summer we missed out on lots of scrimmaging and practices, however to stay in shape I attended multiple training sessions and lifted weights frequently to better myself as an athlete,” said sophomore football player, Michael Brown. 

By practicing frequently at home, athletes can try and prepare themselves for a hopeful upcoming season. 

“Not having sports in season right now will help me improve. Since most of the XC meets have been pushed back to December, this has given us ample time to prepare for the coming season,” said Harrison.

“I am currently practicing tennis for at least an hour and a half everyday at the tennis courts near Oso Grande. Practicing this much helps me feel a little more secure and confident about hopefully making the team,” said freshman, Kelsey Yi. 

Without try-outs, many freshmen were not able to join sports teams or show off their skills for a spot on the roster.

At first I was relieved that tryouts were being pushed back, but then it started to settle in that the competition this year is going to be much harder, and the feeling that I wasn’t going to be ready started to eat away at me,”

— Yi

“Because the summer tennis camp was cancelled, I can’t help but feel rather unprepared for when tryouts might happen. At first I was relieved that tryouts were being pushed back, but then it started to settle in that the competition this year is going to be much harder, and the feeling that I wasn’t going to be ready started to eat away at me,” said Yi. 

As of right now the district is hoping try-outs will be able to be held sometime in February. However, for these small Coronavirus practices, many teams are only allowing returning players to train. For now, many freshmen are working on trying to develop themselves to be the best they can be, without having to be at school. 

“My advice to people struggling is to stay persistent and exercise whenever you can because the sports season will come eventually,” said Harrison. 

The next few weeks will reveal what is to come with sports, whether equipment will be allowed, and when we can return to practices with contact and scrimmaging. 

“Around this time we would typically be preparing for our first game, but with the pandemic there’s been lots of changes. I’m excited for the moment we can completely return back to normal and I hope we can eventually have a season that will be one to remember,” said Brown.