Toca Juniors Football Club


  • Safety Guidelines


June 2020

These guidelines are designed to be a starting framework for all our members to use as they consider whether to return to play during this time of the COVID-19 virus. At a minimum, anyone (coach, parent, or player) exhibiting possible COVID-19 symptoms, including a continuous cough, shortness of breath and/or light fever, cannot participate in club-sponsored activities.

The club is committed to taking all appropriate steps so that our players can return to playing soccer in a safe and healthy environment. Realize, however, that this or any guidance cannot guarantee that no one will contract the COVID-19 virus. Everyone has a responsibility to protect themselves and to protect each other.

These guidelines are based on current guidance from, for example, the CDC, State of Maryland, US Soccer Federation, and the Maryland Youth Soccer Association. They are subject to change as updated public health guidance is made available.

Coach’s Responsibilities:

• Lead by example and ensure that these guidelines are followed by all players and parents.
• Inquire how the athletes are feeling. Send home anyone you believe acts or looks ill.
• Familiarize yourself with CDC, state and local health protocols and guidelines.
• Ensure all athletes have their own individual equipment (ball, water, bag etc.).
• Ensure coach is the only person to handle club equipment (e.g. cones, disk etc.); do not enlist parental or player assistance.
• All training should be conducted outdoors and compliant with social or physical distancing per CDC, state and local health protocols and guidelines.
• Always wear a face mask, even when not actively coaching.
• Coaches should maintain social distance requirements from players based on CDC, state and local health protocols and guidelines.
• Have fun, stay positive – players and parents are looking to you for leadership.
• The use of scrimmage vests, or pinnies, is not recommended at this time.
• Respect players, parents, and families by accommodating those that may not yet be comfortable with returning to play.
• Keep and create constructive and effective communication with players (briefing before or after practice) regarding these guidelines and why it is important to follow them.
• At this time, all training sessions are limited to no more than 8-9 players. No exceptions allowed. (The number of players may increase as public health guidance is updated.)
• Direct teams entering fields for training that they should wait until all players from previous practice have left.

Parent’s Responsibilities:

• If you are not comfortable with your child returning to play, DO NOT have them play. You are the only one to make the decision when your child returns to play.
• Parents will be asked to sign a waiver before your child can play. The waiver is to be signed online.
• Have a conversion with your child about these guidelines. This is very important.
• No one allowed at the field if he/she has been in close proximity with a COVID-19 victim within the previous 14 days.
• Ensure your child is healthy and check your child’s temperature before activities with others.
• Consider not carpooling.
• If you remain at the field, stay in your car or adhere to social distance requirements, based on CDC, state and local health protocols and guidelines.
• When at training, wear a mask when outside your car.
• Ensure child’s clothing is washed after every training.
• Ensure all equipment (cleats, ball, shin guards etc.) are sanitized before and after every training.
• Notify the coach immediately if your child becomes ill for any reason.
• Do not assist your coach with equipment before or after training.
• Be sure your child has necessary sanitizing products with them at every training.
• Ensure your child has plenty of water. No sharing with other teammates.

Player’s Responsibilities:

• If you are not comfortable with returning to play, DO NOT.
• Take your temperature daily and especially before activities with others.
• Wash hands thoroughly before and after training.
• Bring, and use, hand sanitizer with you at every training.
• Wear mask before and immediately after all training. Players may but are not required to wear a mask during drills, etc.
• Come prepared fully dressed and ready to play when arrive at the field.
• Do not touch or share anyone else’s equipment, water, food or bags.
• Players who have to cough or sneeze, please turn your head away from others and use your arm for cover.
• No spitting allowed on the field at any time. This includes Gatorade and water.
• Practice social or physical distancing, including placing bags and equipment at least 6 feet apart from those of other players.
• Wash and sanitize all equipment before and after every training.
• Players must leave the field immediately after every training session.
• No group celebrations, high-5s, hugs, handshakes, fist-bumps, etc.
• Be aware of and follow all CDC guidelines as well those of your state and local health authorities.
• Players must bring their own soccer ball and wear Toca Juniors jersey.

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