Fall is here, and with that comes many traditions. Leaves are changing colors, a spectacular holiday line-up from Halloween to New Year’s Day, and seemingly endless opportunities to cheer on your favorite sports team. Going to “the game” is as American as apple pie. From college to professional sporting events, attending a football, baseball, or other live sporting event is a major past-time.
Then COVID-19 hit our nation and changed everything. In the early days of the pandemic, entire seasons were canceled. Major League Baseball and the National Basketball Association were among the first to announce the 2020 season had been canceled until further notice. As the virus marched on through the summer months, people wondered if the National Football League and college conferences around the country would do the same. Both the NFL and College football did end up going forth with their respective seasons, but many stadiums allow only a minimal number of fans during game time, keeping caps on their occupancy.
As Fall sports kick-off their seasons and championship matchups take form, there is a notable inconsistency across the board. One reason is that the governor for each state can order a cap on who can attend games because they make decisions based on the prevalence of coronavirus in their region. If COVID-19 has a strong foothold or if residents have a history of being unlikely to uphold basic pandemic best practices, such as wearing a mask, there is a negative effect on local businesses’ ability to open and events to take place. At this point, many Governors are only allowing 20% capacity.
Youth Sports – Attending Your Child’s Saturday Game
Similar to the NFL, youth and young adult sporting events are also starting to resume slowly. Many families are eager to get their kids socializing and physically active again as they march toward a sense of normalcy. However, many parents agree that safety needs to come first. The CDC has provided clear guidelines on how to keep youth sporting programs safe. Only attending practice means youths will be gathering in groups, which calls for best safety practices and screenings.
Parents and athletes should be familiar with the CDC considerations for youth sports before deciding to participate in a sporting event, even if held outside. Deciding to attend a game as a spectator should remain fluid so that the decision can be followed by the most up-to-date risk factors. The World Health Organization (WHO) has asked that everyone evaluate the risks in real-time.
The Best Defense is a Good Mask
At this point in what we’ve learned from the spread of the virus, the best defense you can prepare is wearing a mask. Today, there are many masks on the market. Before you spend money to purchase a mask for yourself or your family, take a moment, and do a little research. Many face masks are mass-produced quickly to meet demand or cash in and are not very comfortable on the ears, nose, and chin. One of the best masks on the market today is made by Boomer Naturals. What makes the Boomer Naturals face mask unique is the nano-silver technology. These naturally charged fibers of real silver hold unique antimicrobial filtering properties and are engineered to block the spread of small, airborne particles. The nanofibers are infused within 3-layers of the masks composition and manufactured with a reusable protective cloth to ensure safety and comfort. These specially designed masks were explicitly developed for the COVID-19 pandemic and block 99.9% of all airborne particles within a 30-day reusable period.
Staying Safe at Sporting Events
While professional athletes, coaches, and other personnel are screened and given on-and-off-the-field best guidelines, attendees hold a greater risk of contracting coronavirus because of the vulnerability people face by counting on others to adhere to simple protective protocols. The only foolproof way to avoid spreading the virus is to stay home. Still, many Americans are more confident in learning to live with the virus by following social distancing and face-mask protocols. Furthermore, many have stated they would gladly wear masks and social distance to attend a live sporting event.
If you are thinking of attending a live sporting event, whether professional, collegiate, or your child’s soccer game, here are a few tips to stay safe should you decide to attend:
- Wear a mask. This is one of the most essential pieces of advice when out in public spaces, especially indoors. Luckily, most sporting events are outdoors, but wearing a mask is still the recommended protocol. Remember, some face coverings aren’t effective. Responsibly wearing a mask to optimize your safety, as well as the safety of others, means choosing one with at least three layers that fit snugly across your nose (not under), along your cheeks, and under your chin. Boomer Naturals has well-designed masks with Nano Silver Technology that keep you safer and is compliant with CDC and WHO recommendations.
- Bring hand sanitizer and use it regularly. Hand sanitizer needs to be made of 70% alcohol to be effective against the virus, so check the label before packing your sporting event bag.
- Don’t touch your face or mask. When you touch the outside of your mask, you could also be touching the virus. If you pull your mask off to eat or drink, be sure to wash and sanitize your hands after you’ve handled your mask.
- Maintain social distancing, whether inside or outside. Even though venues are beginning to open, social distancing rules are still in full effect. It’s always safer to remain in well-ventilated outdoor areas.
As the world opens up and continues to find an evolving new normal, remember that safety first is still the best approach to keep yourself and those around you healthy. Returning to life with in-person dining, social activities, youth programs, and spectator sports always bring with it a responsibility to commit to mask-wearing, hand-washing, and social distancing.