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By James McAfee/The Knox County News-Courier—
High school coaches and athletes at Knox City and Munday are bringing back some normalcy as summer workouts resumed earlier this month, although they are following several strenuous guidelines in accordance with UIL and TEA recommendations. Benjamin was scheduled to start this week.
“Workout are going great,” Knox City Athletics Director Caleb Callaway said. “Turnout has been really good and there is a lot of excitement in our program right now.”
Callaway said coaches and players have been able to utilize this time bring players back into a routine.
“Surprisingly,” he said, “our kids have reported in pretty good shape after the time off due to COVID-19. It has definitely got all of our hearts pumping again and headed in the right direction.
According to Callaway, his coaches also have been finding ways to make the best of the in order to be ready for the 2020 season, despite conditions set forth by the state.
“My staff has also been doing a great job keeping the kids engaged and varying workouts to eliminate boredom through repetitiveness,” he said. “We are excited about this upcoming year and our kids are doing the things needed to make it a great year for Knox City-O’Brien athletics.
Coach Justin Josselet did not reply to requests for comment.
Coaches said UIL guidelines will be strictly enforced and they worry something will going wrong with this plan, resulting in summer workouts being completely shut down. Here are a few of the UIL guidelines that must be followed:
- Students must complete online check-in or certify they are symptom free each day prior to working out. Any student-athlete with symptoms must stay home.
- Social distancing rules have to be followed, including 10-feet separation between athletes during lifts, drills or exercise, and six-feet separation during periods of rest. No physical contact, including high fives and back slaps, is allowed.
- Equipment will be disinfected between each individual use. Coaches will wear masks in the weight room. At the conclusion of the workouts, athletes must use hand sanitizer and exit the school facilities, maintaining social distancing of six feet.
- Weight rooms will be getting enhanced cleaning treatment.
- While athletes are being encouraged to wear masks, it’s not required unless they are actively spotting other athletes in the weight room.
- Athletes must arrive dressed ready to work out since locker rooms are off limits. Restroom access is allowed in emergencies with a one-in, one-out order. There will be immediate cleaning by athletes or coaches after each use.
- Athletes must bring their own water and may not share with any other person.
- If athletes develop COVID-19 symptoms or believe they were exposed to the virus, he or she will be removed from working out until they are symptom free for 72 hours.
- If one member of a group tests positive for COVID-19, all members of that group and any sport-specific training group will be required to self-quarantine for 14 days and be symptom free for 72 hours prior to returning to workouts.