Masks now required for everyone in indoor settings. Learn more.

Report Business Outbreaks

Sports & Recreation Guidance

5
This information is to assist our community and schools on sports activities allowed within our counties.

Sports Guidance

Submit your Sports Tournament Safety Plan to the Health District.

Sports and Fitness Guidance during COVID-19 – DOH

WIAA

WIAA Staff will continue to update the resources available on their page as the situation evolves. The WIAA has encouraged leagues to find creative solutions that will promote participation and engagement in their local communities including submitting requests for modifying season schedules and waiver requests for WIAA rules.

The WIAA has used this guidance to develop new general, as well as sport-specific, return-to-play guidelines. The Governor’s office has informed the WIAA that these guidelines must be followed and neither schools nor community sports programs have the authority to implement more lenient policies.

The Governor’s office has declared school districts and organizations must follow these guidelines, unlike the recommendations issued in the Decision-Making Tree for schools to return to in-person learning. It is not mandated that schools return to in-person learning before taking part in extracurricular activities given the phase requirements are met.

In-depth guidelines for Education Based Sports & Activities can be found on the WIAA Return to Play Guidelines page.

See also: WIAA Executive Board Revises Season 1 Sports in Response to State Guidelines

Masking

Please see guidance for specifics on masking at each phase. Noteable areas include:

Outdoors:

  • Masks are no longer required outdoors; however, unvaccinated individuals should wear face coverings outdoors in crowded public settings, including sporting events, where there is decreased ability to consistently maintain physical distance between non-household members.
  • People are not required to wear face coverings while engaged in outdoor training or competition in any type of sport.

Indoors:

» Guidance for Sports and Fitness Activities (contact risk levels) – DOH

  • All individuals are required to continue to wear masks, regardless of vaccination status, indoors in K-12 schools, child care facilities, camps, or other youth settings in areas where children are present or expected to be present (unless subject to an exception – see below).
  • Unvaccinated persons are required to wear face coverings when indoors in a place where people from outside their household are present or in a place that is generally accessible to people from outside their household.
  • All athletes, including unvaccinated people, are not required to wear face coverings while engaged in indoor training or competition for low and moderate contact sports. Masks are encouraged when practicing indoors.
  • Masks are not required for fully vaccinated athletes competing in high-contact indoor sports. Masks are not required for unvaccinated athletes competing in high-contact indoor sports if they participate in screening testing. Masks are encouraged when practicing indoors.
  • Universal masking is required by all athletes, coaches, athletic trainers and support personnel when in weight rooms, regardless of  vaccination status. Weight rooms are high-risk indoor settings. They are often poorly ventilated, crowded and used by athletes from sports of multiple contact levels, as well as PE students. Practice physical distancing to the degree possible.
  • All youth athletes should resume wearing face coverings when not actively training or competing.
  • All coaches, athletic trainers, and other support personnel involved with sporting activities must wear face coverings indoors in K-12 settings, regardless of vaccination status.
  • Unvaccinated adult athletes should resume wearing face coverings when not actively training or competing. Vaccinated adult athletes should resume wearing face coverings when not actively training or competing if children are present or expected to be present in a youth setting.
  • Referees who are fully vaccinated do not have to wear face coverings indoors when actively officiating and running (e.g., basketball). When they are not running, masks are required (e.g., talking with coaches, between quarters). Unvaccinated referees must wear face coverings at all times when they are officiating, unless they participate in screening testing.
  • Masking is required universally for all spectators attending indoor K-12 sporting activities, regardless of vaccination status. Audience members should be seated in “family units” and those small groups should be spaced at least 3 feet apart.

There are multiple exceptions to this guidance, including but not limited to:

  • People are not required to wear face coverings while swimming or engaged in other water sports or recreation.
  • People are not required to wear face coverings while engaged in the act of eating or drinking.
  • People are not required to wear face coverings while showering, bathing, or engaging in other personal hygiene or grooming activities that require the removal of the face covering.
  • People are not required to wear face coverings when outdoors.

Physical distancing should be used in these situations when unvaccinated persons are not using face coverings. Fitness facilities are required to follow the Secretary of Health’s Mask Order for unvaccinated members and guests.

The State of Washington has also adopted specific guidance for these areas:

Sports, Recreation and Fitness