Governor Cuomo announced last week lower-risk, school-sponsored sports in all regions may begin to practice and play beginning September 21st. However, travel for practice or play will be prohibited outside of the school's region or contiguous regions or counties until October 19th. For the fall sports season, lower- and moderate-risk sports include tennis, soccer, cross country, field hockey and swimming.
Higher-risk sports, including those with full physical contact, may begin to practice on September 21st but cannot play until a later date or December 31st. In accordance with the Department of Health's guidance for sports and recreation during the COVID-19 public health emergency, practices for higher-risk sports are limited to individual or group, no- to low-contact training. Higher-risk sports include football, wrestling, rugby, hockey and volleyball.
"The State has done a lot of research on how we can safely have our students participate in school sports and get the exercise they need, and the guidance we developed will allow lower-risk sports to begin practicing and playing next month," Governor Cuomo said. "We are approaching youth sports as we have approached everything else in our phased reopening - teams are not allowed to compete outside a school's region or contiguous region for the time being until we can gauge the effects."
Schools must follow the Department's guidance for the conduct of their school sports. Schools will have to limit capacity of indoor facilities to no more than 50 percent occupancy and limit spectators to no more than two spectators per player, in addition to implementing social distancing and face coverings.