Children have been in social isolation for months now and doing online school. Even the strict parents now want their kids to at least get time to get out and socialize. But is it safe? One of the ways our kids socialize is through sports. Now more than ever, the children are anxiously ready to get out and play with their friends, but the most important question is, is it safe yet?
This is a tough question to get a definite answer to. COVID-19 is a very dangerous and contagious virus, and the CDC said it is spread through aerosols. This means the infected particles from the mouth and nose can stay suspended in the air for so long, increasing the infection rate. With the virus now getting distributed, protecting our young ones is paramount. The adults are now easing on the COVID-19 protocols out in place immediately after they get fully vaccinated. But how safe is it for our children who are the most vulnerable?
Even with the vaccine, the pandemic isn’t over. This is just the beginning of the end of the pandemic, and now more than ever, we have to take care of our children. As they insist on going out to play, they don’t know the risks of the virus, and as parents, we have to take charge.
How to Determine If It’s Safe to Play
As the pandemic isn’t ending any time soon, we have to learn how to live with it. This means being very careful and thoughtful in all activities chosen for the kids. Go for activities that are automatically socially distanced and avoid indoor sports activities. Here is how you can choose the right sports for the kids:
- Socially distanced sport. Tennis and cross country is an example of the safest sports activities you can engage in right now, and these are the safest. Golf and swimming also fit into that category.
- Contact with other players. If your kid loves group sports, ask yourself, how long will they be in contact with the other players? The longer they are in contact, the more the risk. An outdoor sport with minimal grouping time, such as soccer, might be okay. Make sure social distancing and masks are observed off the field.
- Sharing equipment. Touching infected surfaces is one of the ways to spread the virus. Avoid sports where equipment is shared, as this increases the likelihood of infection.
- Does the sport require traveling to another community? Remember, the chances of getting infected depends on the rate of infection in a community and the number of people who tested positive in the community. Your community might have a low number, but what if the kids travel to another one with a higher infection rate. Go for non-traveling sports.
- Indoor or outdoor sports. Any indoor sport is riskier, especially because the kids are running around and breathing faster. The aerosols can linger in the air for hours, and most indoor areas don’t have the best ventilation.
- COVID-19 safety rules. Are all the parents and kids observing COVID-19 safety rules? Stay away from places where wearing masks is seen as unnecessary.
A time will come when you will face a situation where your family will need to opt for a few games with others. Stay safe, take all precautions necessary, and be ready for any situation.