New York officials released new guidelines New Yorkers must follow while participating in sports or recreation, including wearing a mask when participating.

This guidance is effective immediately for the statewide permitted outdoor,low-risk recreational activities, as determined by the Empire State Development Corporation:

  • tennis;
  • non-motorized boat use and rentals, such as row boats, kayaks, canoes;
  • golf and driving ranges, except miniature (mini) golf, with food and retail services subject to the restrictions that are currently in effect within the region; • racket games, such as badminton, racquetball;
  • toss/bowl games, such horseshoes, bocce, bean bag toss, croquet;
  • flying disc games, such as disc golf and frisbee;
  • shuffleboard;
  • zip lining;
  • rope courses, including aerial rope courses;
  • batting cages;
  • shooting ranges; and
  • swim classes and swim instruction

For all other sports, the guidance goes into effect on July 3, if a region is in or past Phase 3.

Lower risk sports and recreation activities:

  • baseball,
  •  softball,
  •  doubles tennis,
  •  racket games, such as badminton, racquetball,
  •  water polo,
  •  gymnastics,
  •  field hockey,
  •  non-contact lacrosse,
  •  swimming relays,
  •  soccer,
  •  crew with two or more rowers in shell,
  •  rafting,
  •  paintball, and
  •  other sports and recreation activities with similar abilities to maintain physical
    distance and/or limit exposure to shared equipment prior to such equipment being
    cleaned and disinfected.

Moderate risk sports and recreation activities:

  • baseball,
  • softball,
  •  doubles tennis,
  •  racket games, such as badminton, racquetball,
  •  water polo,
  •  gymnastics,
  •  field hockey,
  •  non-contact lacrosse,
  •  swimming relays,
  •  soccer,
  •  crew with two or more rowers in shell,
  •  rafting,
  •  paintball, and
  •  other sports and recreation activities with similar abilities to maintain physical
    distance and/or limit exposure to shared equipment prior to such equipment being
    cleaned and disinfected.

Higher risk sports and recreation activities:

  •  football,
  •  wrestling,
  •  ice hockey,
  •  rugby,
  •  basketball,
  • o contact lacrosse,
  •  volleyball,
  •  competitive cheer & group dance, and
  •  other sports and recreation activities with similar abilities to maintain physical
    distance and/or limit exposure to shared equipment prior to such equipment being
    cleaned and disinfected.

Below is guidance for sports and recreation according to the New York State Department of Health:

 Physical Distancing
• Responsible Parties must ensure that for any indoor sport or recreational activity, capacity is limited
to no more than 50% of the maximum occupancy for a particular area as set by the certificate of
occupancy, inclusive of employees and patrons/players/spectators.
o Responsible Parties must limit spectators to no more than two spectators per player.
• Responsible Parties must ensure a distance of at least six feet is maintained among individuals at all
times, whether indoor or outdoor, unless safety or the core activity (e.g. practicing, playing) requires
a shorter distance. If a shorter distance is required, individuals must wear acceptable face coverings,
unless players are unable to tolerate a face covering for the physical activity (e.g. practicing,
playing); provided, however, that coaches, trainers, and other individuals who are not directly
engaged in physical activity are required to wear a face covering.
o Acceptable face coverings for COVID-19 include but are not limited to cloth-based face coverings
and disposable masks that cover both the mouth and nose.
• Responsible Parties must ensure that employees at check-in or appointment desks maintain six feet
from other employees and patrons/players/spectators, unless there is a physical barrier between the
employee and other individual(s). Any time employees interact with patrons/players/spectators (e.g.
operating appointment desks), they must wear acceptable face coverings.
o If used, physical barriers should be put in place in accordance with OSHA guidelines.
o Physical barrier options may include: strip curtains, plexiglass or similar materials, or other
impermeable dividers or partitions.
• Responsible Parties should implement touchless payment options or pay ahead or reserve options to
be used by patrons/players, when available. Responsible Parties should minimize handling cash,
credit cards, reward cards, and mobile devices, where possible.
• Responsible Parties should modify layouts so that individuals are at least six feet apart in all
directions, to the greatest extent possible, particularly during field exercises, drills, and other practice
o Responsible Parties must ensure that employees use face coverings when interacting with
patrons/players/spectators, regardless of physical distance.
o Responsible Parties must reserve adequate space for employees and patrons/players/spectators
to move within the facility or area, considering appropriate social distancing; this may include but
is not limited to creating one-way lines,rearranging traffic flow, or otherwise using alternating
cash registers/appointment desks.
• Responsible Parties should prohibit the use of small spaces (e.g. behind cash registers, equipment
checkout areas) by more than one individual at a time, unless all individuals in such space at the
same time are wearing acceptable face coverings. However, even with face coverings in use,
occupancy must not exceed 50% of the maximum capacity of the space or vehicle, unless it is
designed for use by a single occupant.
• Responsible Parties must post signage and distance markers denoting spaces of six feet in all
commonly used areas indoors for employees and any areas in which lines are commonly formed or
people may congregate (e.g. clock in/out stations, health screening stations, break rooms, equipment
checkout areas, cash register areas, locker rooms, etc.).
• Responsible Parties must post signs throughout the site, consistent with DOH COVID-19 signage.
Responsible Parties can develop their own customized signage specific to a workplace or setting,
provided that such signage is consistent with the Department’s signage. Signage should be used to
remind individuals to:
o Cover their nose and mouth with a face covering.
o Properly store and, when necessary, discard personal protective equipment (PPE).
o Adhere to physical distancing instructions.
o Report symptoms of or exposure to COVID-19, and how they should do so.
o Follow hand hygiene and cleaning and disinfection guidelines.
o Follow appropriate respiratory hygiene and cough etiquette.
o Remain home if not feeling well.
• For spectators, the following additional safety measures apply:
o For sports events (e.g. games), Responsible Parties must limit spectators to two spectators per
o Responsible Parties must ensure spectators maintain six feet of physical distance between
individuals and/or family/household units at all times and all spectators must wear face coverings
when they are in common areas and situations where six feet of distancing is not able to be
maintained, so long as they are over the age of two and medically able to tolerate such covering.
▪ Responsible Parties may facilitate appropriate distancing through the use of markings on the
ground or seating areas, and other signage.
o Responsible Parties must ensure that, among all spectators, no individual group exceeds the
gathering limit that is currently in place for the region.
▪ Responsible Parties may facilitate appropriate gathering size through the use of signage
and/or staff to ensure groups are aware of and adhere to guidelines.

Gatherings in Enclosed Spaces
• Responsible Parties should limit in-person gatherings of employees (e.g. employee meetings, stock
rooms) to the extent possible and use other methods such as video or teleconferencing whenever possible, per CDC guidance “Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers to Plan and Respond to
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)”. Responsible Parties should hold in-person employee
meetings in open, well-ventilated spaces and ensure that individuals maintain six feet of social
distance between one another (e.g. if there are chairs, leave space between chairs, have employees
sit in alternating chairs) or wear appropriate face coverings.
• Responsible Parties must put in place practices for adequate social distancing in small areas, such as
restrooms and breakrooms, and should develop signage and systems (e.g. flagging when occupied)
to restrict occupancy when social distancing cannot be maintained in such areas.
• Responsible Parties should stagger schedules for employees to observe social distancing (i.e., six feet
of space) for any gathering (e.g. coffee breaks, meals, and shift starts/stops).
• Responsible Parties should consider staggering the schedule for patrons/players and/or teams to
utilize facilities.

On-Site Activity
• For sports and recreation activities that may involve group interaction:
o Responsible Parties are encouraged to use remote check-in (by Internet or telephone) where
applicable (e.g., reserve courts, tee times).
o Responsible Parties should discourage sharing of equipment among patrons/players, unless it is
able to be cleaned and disinfected between use.
o Responsible Parties should discourage employees and patrons/players/spectators from hand-tohand contact, unless it is part of the sport or recreational activity (e.g., handshakes, high-fives,
fist bumps, hugs).
▪ Consult the CDC’s “Considerations for Youth Sports” guidance.
• For golf courses and driving ranges, Responsible Parties should ensure players adhere to the
following additional safety measures:
o Limit tee times to four players, except for members of the same household;
o Restrict use of golf carts to single riders or members of the same family/household only, unless a
physical barrier that does not impede visibility or operation of the cart is in place. Cleaning and
disinfection are required between each party’s use;
o Keep golf bag in possession, when possible;
o Consider using remote check-in, with advance tee time reservations (by Internet or telephone);
o Process payment of greens fee in a contact-free manner at the time of play by credit and debit
card only (e.g. no cash) to the extent possible; courses should make efforts to take phone
payments in advance;
o Prohibit the use of bunker rakes (except by employees/maintenance staff), ball washers, and
water coolers;
o Permit golf pros on the course, provided they do not touch players and keep six feet of distance
at all times, unless wearing a face covering or are separated by a physical barrier;
o Prohibit common use of tees/scorecards/pencils/ball markers among non-household members,
unless such items are cleaned and disinfected between use;
o Only allow club and equipment rentals if it is cleaned and disinfected before and after player use

Movement and Commerce
Responsible Parties should put in place measures to reduce bi-directional foot traffic of
patrons/players/spectators walking through the space using barriers, tape, or signs with arrows on
sidewalks, walking paths, aisles, or hallways.
• Responsible Parties should clearly designate separate entrances and exits, to the extent practicable.
• Responsible Parties should rearrange waiting areas (e.g. lines, parking areas) to maximize social
distance among other patrons/players/spectators and minimize interaction with others in the area.
• Responsible Parties must ensure the cashier or ticket-taker wears a face covering when interacting
with any patron/player/spectator. This process should be contactless to the extent practicable.
• For merchandise or equipment deliveries, Responsible Parties should implement a touchless delivery
system whereby drivers stay in the vehicle while delivery takes place or, where not practicable,
Responsible Parties must provide acceptable PPE appropriate to the anticipated activities that
includes, at a minimum, a face covering to personnel involved in the delivery at no cost for the
duration of the delivery process.
• Responsible Parties must perform hand hygiene before and after transferring a load (e.g. from a
delivery driver) of merchandise (e.g. perform hand hygiene before starting to load items; and once all
items have been loaded, finish by performing hand hygiene again).
• Responsible Parties must follow the food service guidelines applicable to their region for any food
services activities.
• Responsible Parties must follow the retail guidelines applicable to their region for any retail services
• Responsible Parties must follow the office-based work guidelines applicable to their region for any
office-based work activities.
• Responsible Parties should limit amount of people on walking, running, and hiking trails at any given
time by, for instance, posting signage reminding individuals to avoid congregating in groups.

Protective Equipment
• Responsible Parties must ensure individuals not participating in sports or recreation activities (e.g.
coaches, spectators) wear appropriate face coverings when they are within less than six feet of other
individuals, unless a physical barrier is present. Additionally, employees must wear face coverings any
time they interact with patrons/players/spectators, regardless of physical distance.
• In addition to the necessary PPE as required for certain workplace activities, Responsible Parties must
procure, fashion, or otherwise obtain acceptable face coverings, and provide such coverings to their
employees while at work at no cost to the employee. Responsible Parties should have an adequate
supply of face coverings, masks and other required PPE on hand should an employee need a
replacement. Acceptable face coverings include, but are not limited to, cloth (e.g. homemade sewn,
quick cut, bandana), surgical masks,N95 respirators, and face shields.
• Face coverings must be cleaned or replaced after use and may not be shared. Please consult the CDC
guidance for additional information on cloth face coverings and other types of PPE, as well as
instructions on use and cleaning.
o Note that cloth face coverings or disposable masks shall not be considered acceptable face
coverings for workplace activities that impose a higher degree of protection for face covering
requirements. OSHA standards for such safety equipment must be adhered to.
• Responsible Parties must allow employees to use their own acceptable face coverings but cannot
require employees to supply their own face coverings. Further, this guidance shall not prevent
employees from wearing their personally owned additional protective coverings (e.g. surgical masks,
N95 respirators, or face shields), or if the Responsible Parties otherwise require employees to wear
more protective PPE due to the nature of their work. Employers should comply with all applicable
OSHA standards.
• Responsible Parties must put in place measures to limit the sharing of objects, such as equipment
and vehicles, as well as the touching of shared surfaces, such as cash registers; or, require workers
to wear gloves (trade-appropriate or medical) when in contact with shared objects or frequently
touched surfaces; or, require workers to perform hand hygiene before and after contact.
• Responsible Parties must train workers on how to adequately don, doff, clean (as applicable), and
discard PPE, including but not limited to, appropriate face coverings.

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