NYSWYSA Return to Play Update

NYSWYSA Return to Play Update


Updated COVID-19 Hold Harmless Waiver

  • This form is for use moving forward.  You do not need to re-sign if you have completed one previously.

In State Travel Restrictions - Update as of 3/18/2021

  • Effective 3/29/2021 - No Restrictions
  • Teams from other states may practice or play in NYS.

Out of State Travel update from Albany - Update as of 3/11/2021

  • If you choose to travel to other states, keep in mind that the New York COVID-19 Travel Advisory must be followed, as well as that of the State or States you are travelling to.
    • The travel guidelines require all New Yorkers as well as those visiting from out of state, to take personal responsibility for compliance in the best interest of public health and safety.
  • Effective 4/1/2021, If teams wish to travel to another state they must fill out the Online Traveler Health Form but are not required to quarantine. 
  • Teams from other states may practice or play in NYS.



Capacity Restrictions
The sports and recreation guidance provides the following in regard to capacity restrictions (p. 5):

  • 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.
    • 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.

The social gathering limit -- which is currently 50 or fewer people in areas that are not subject to the State's cluster action initiative -- is not the controlling limitation for these activities.  The limit is the lesser of 2 spectators per player or 50% maximum occupancy indoors/space required such that all spectators can maintain six feet of separation outdoors (e.g., roughly 100 square feet per person).


U.S. Soccer Guidance 11/13/2020

U.S. Soccer has released guidelines for indoor soccer as part of its PLAY ON campaign, providing coaches, players, parents, referees and administrators with considerations to continue to ensure safe play indoors as winter approaches.

U.S. Soccer encourages playing outdoors whenever it is safe to do so in accordance with its Cold Weather Guidelines. When weather doesn’t permit outdoor play, these indoor recommendations will help evaluate and mitigate risk.

US Soccer guidelines for indoor soccer do not supersede the specific requirements a venue has in place. The requirements of the venue should always take precedence.

Please see the link below which specifies the return to play guidelines for Sports and Recreation effective July 6th for Soccer as mandated by the New York State government. This remains in effect until removed from the website, at which time New York State government will have lifted the restrictions.

Detailed Document - Click Here

Summary Document - Click Here

The State of New York has classified Soccer as a moderate Risk Sport and their guidelines clarify what type of play is allowed.  The guidelines specify both the mandatory requirements of return to play and the recommended best practices.  Refer to the above link to ensure that your respective soccer programming meets the New York State requirements.

Additionally, NYSWYSA recommends referencing the US Soccer Play On guidelines as a template to develop your own program-specific return to play protocols.  The US Soccer guidelines can be accessed via the link below. Please make sure that in using these guidelines, your program-specific protocols also meet the mandated New York State government requirements. 


US Soccer advocates a phased return to play for all players.  US Soccer recommendations include many additional resources which should help in the construction of your specific return to play protocols.  

As previously circulated here is a link to a template for a Release of Liability and Assumption of Risk Agreement, which you may use if you choose to do so.  It is recommended that you review this template with your organization’s legal counsel before utilizing it.   Click here!  for the template and click this FAQ link for additional information.  FAQ regarding Hold Harmless Document 

Additional Resources:

CDC Considerations for Youth Sports


NYS COVID Testing Information

NYS COVID Travel Advisory

Finally, please ensure all players returning to play are registered as ACTIVE with NYSWYSA and therefore insured to the end of the season.


New York State West Youth Soccer Association.