PIAA Releases Track & Field Return To Competition Guidelines

The PIAA released its "Return For Competition" guidelines for every spring sport on Wednesday, including track and field. That guidelines are meant to "decrease potential exposure of COVID-19 to a degree that competition can occur."

Like the fall, the PIAA believes it can safely sponsor an outdoor track and field season, despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. "Strict Adherence by schools and teams to their school-adopted plans and the Governor's School Sports Guidance should provide a reasonably safe environment for student-athletes to participate in interscholastic athletics as currently scheduled."

The guidelines provide general safety considerations for athletes, coaches, and parents. It also offers sport-specific guidance. Read the track and field guidelines below and check out the full spring sport Return to Competition guidelines HERE.

  • SP, DT, JT should enforce social distancing for all athletes and officials. 

    • To limit contact: athletes can provide their own implements (that pass inspection) and retrieve their own implements after all throws. 

    • If athletes cannot provide their own implements, then it is recommended that implements be sanitized between each use. 

  • LJ, TJ, HJ, PV should enforce social distancing for all athletes and officials. 

    • To limit contact: athletes should not share vaulting poles. 

  • Sprint, Hurdle, relay events run entirely in lanes, may use every other lane to assist with distancing. 

    • Blocks should be disinfected after each heat / race. 

    • Recommend not using baskets at start line for apparel. o Middle Distance and distance races on the track of 800m and longer (any event not run entirely in lanes) are considered moderate risk activities. To minimize contact, events are recommended to be run in alleys or minimally one turn staggers.

Additionally, the PIAA has modified the NFHS rule that prohibits the use of gloves in relays. Disposable gloves may now be used during relays.