Now that we are gradually returning to sports, it is important to check in with your pediatrician prior to participation, for a complete sports physical. Any child who had a positive COVID-19 test should get their pediatrician’s approval before returning to exercise or sports. They need a minimum 10-day period to rest, without exercise or competition.
Before returning to physical activity, children should be screened for heart symptoms like chest pain, shortness of breath, fatigue, irregular heartbeat, or fainting. A child with a positive heart screening will need an EKG and referral to a pediatric cardiologist for possible additional cardiac tests.
Once cleared, the child can start a gradual return to physical activity. The doctor will recommend a schedule based on the child’s age and how severe their COVID-19 symptoms were.
Children 12 years of age and older are recommended to receive the Pfizer COVID19 vaccine, making return to sports even safer for them.
Children who were very ill from COVID-19 or diagnosed with MIS-C must be treated as though they have an inflamed heart muscle (myocarditis). They should not exercise or compete for 3 to 6 months. A pediatric cardiologist should examine these children before they are allowed to return to exercise or competition.
General rules prior to practice or games
- Athletes should stay home from practice or game if they’re feeling sick or have any symptoms of COVID-19, and get a test if the doctor recommends.
- Wash hands before arriving, or use hand sanitizer if soap and water aren’t available.
- Bring labeled personal sports equipment, water bottle, towel, tissues, hand sanitizer, and face mask.
- Stay in the car or assigned school location until the coach is ready to start practice
- Avoid gathering in groups before practice, maintain physical distance and wear a face mask.