Opinion: Most athletes in outdoor sports should not have to wear masks during practice

Opinion%3A+Most+athletes+in+outdoor+sports+should+not+have+to+wear+masks+during+practice

Claire Cady, Reporter

Our lives are beginning to feel somewhat normal in these crazy and difficult times. Sports are starting up again after many months of isolation. The whole reason we have sports is to be involved with each other as a community. However, community and COVID don’t seem to mix. COVID-19 is getting easier and easier to spread now that everyone is starting to come together again. The main way we can stop this virus from spreading is wearing masks, which is why I think athletes need to wear masks at practice when not doing physical activity.

Athletes should wear masks when they are within 6 feet of each other and while not doing high intensity activities. When participating in sports like cross country, soccer, and football, wearing a mask may make it harder to breathe. All of these sports are played outside, so it is easier to maintain social distancing. Cross country is not a contact sport, so if they maintain social distancing, masks while running should not be enforced. Sophomore cross country runner Cate Wilson said, “When not running, we should wear masks to protect ourselves and others.” COVID-19 is a virus spread by contact from person to person, so football players are at higher risk. Although this is true, football is a high intensity sport so they should not have to wear masks while playing. To reduce risk, they should limit how many players practice near each other.

I think volleyball should have to wear masks when they play because they are inside and constantly communicating with each other by yelling which can transmit . Lower intensity sports, like golf, should wear masks at all times because their sport is not as strenuous as others. Coaches should also wear masks whenever possible.

Although we want to avoid getting COVID, health officials say it is likely that everyone will get it at some point. There’s no way we can 100% circumvent catching the virus with sports, but wearing masks whenever possible is the best way to go about avoiding the spread of COVID-19