The National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) today announced that all clubs may permit the use of outdoor team training fields under circumstances outlined by the NWSL medical task force in the league’s “Return to Play Phased Protocol”. The “Return to Play Phased Protocol” details all health and safety guidelines and requires clubs to respect all federal, state, and local mandates. The league will control the progression through each phase, and clubs must have the approval of their medical team to advance.
Clubs will confirm with the league all communication to players and staff members on when they may begin training on team fields and will provide detailed procedures and scheduling information specific to their market. An essential staff member will be allowed to oversee training in this phase while maintaining a proper social distance and with the sole purpose of ensuring players are following all league and team protocols.
The voluntary, individual player workout phase prohibits access to club facilities including but not limited to locker rooms, weight rooms, and indoor team training rooms. Team weight rooms and training rooms are still only accessible to players receiving medical treatments that can’t be performed at home.
The following principles apply to all phases of the league’s return to play protocol:
- All activity must follow government, state, and local mandates
- Each team must have approval from their medical staff to advance to the next phase
- Teams should limit staff to the essential personnel necessary to conduct each phase of training and competition
- Players will undergo a daily symptom screening prior to entering team facilities
- Players who are fulfilling self-quarantine for any reason are not permitted to train with other individuals or at team facilities
- Players, coaches and staff who are sick or have close contact with individuals who are sick must inform the team’s Certified Athletic Trainer, stay home, and not participate in training
- All individuals should practice good hand hygiene, and avoid touching their face, nose and eyes with their hands as much as possible
- Clubs will thoroughly clean and disinfect all commonly touched surfaces daily
The league-wide moratorium on full team training remains in place through, and including, Friday, May 15.