After careful consideration during its June 15 meeting, the USMS Board of Directors decided to extend the recommendation to not sanction in-person pool and open water events through July 31. USMS will continue monitoring the situation and release updated recommendations after the July 11 Board meeting.  

Next Steps

USMS is consulting with industry partners and health officials on best practices in anticipation of in-person events returning in the coming months. We’ll share information and guidance from these consultations on the  COVID-19 Event Resources page .  
Once in-person sanctioned events can be safely held, event directors must ensure all facility, local, state, and federal guidelines for social distancing and COVID-19 safety precautions are in adhered to. Local and state guidelines continue to evolve and vary widely around the country. Each LMSC and event host will need to educate itself on guidelines for the community in which the sanctioned event will be hosted. 

For event organizers who anticipate hosting after the recommendation to not sanction has been lifted, we encourage a proactive and flexible approach to adapt to the evolving situation. The event host should submit local and state guidelines, along with event- and facility-specific COVID-19 swimmer safety plans adhering to those guidelines, during the sanction process along with adjustments that are made when needed. Consideration for swimmers, officials, volunteers, and spectator safety should be included. Areas that should be addressed specifically are warm-up procedures, restrooms and locker rooms, seating areas, behind the blocks for pool meets, start and finish areas for open water events, and distancing for officials, timers and other volunteers. 
Liability Insurance 
USMS liability insurance has never and will not be able to provide coverage for the transmission of COVID-19 or any other viral or bacterial infection. Event hosts must use the  updated USMS liability release  as part of the registration process to ensure that the participants understand this as well. 
Keep USMS Posted 
Please  contact Event Services  with any questions. If you're aware of any meets that have been canceled or will be postponed to a future date, please  contact Volunteer Services  so we can assist in updating the  Calendar of Events  and our sanctions database. 
Virtual Events 
Virtual events that can be completed in a workout setting (pool or open water) will be the most practical path to ease back into competitions and fitness events. USMS currently plans to host the following events for members who have access to swim safely: 

  • Go the Distanceis an ongoing fitness event to encourage USMS members to swim regularly and track their progress. 
  • 2020 SmartyPants Vitamins USMS Summer Fitness Challenge (July 15–31). This is a 2K swim that can be completed in a pool or open water. A dryland option will also be offered. Proceeds from this event will benefit USMS COVID-19 relief efforts for clubs. 
  • 2020 USMS 5K/10K ePostal National Championships (June 1–Sept. 30) includes the traditional LCM championship and a new SCY/SCM ‘just for fun’ option. 
  • In addition to these annual events, USMS plans to host the 2020 USMS Virtual Championships August 12-23. More details about this new event will be announced in the coming weeks. 
USMS encourages clubs and event organizers to get creative by hosting virtual pool and open water events in a variety of formats. These events can be used as fundraisers to help clubs recoup revenue lost during the shutdown.