The restrictions on social and/or group gatherings in the name of public health and safety has greatly impacted high school sports.
Teams are not able to meet for instruction and games have been stopped until May 4 by the University Interscholastic League while school districts have closed their facilities.
So, what does this mean for local teams that found themselves shutdown as the season was just getting started for some or winding down for others?
How do coaches keep their kids in playing shape under such conditions when their seasons may be over?
REL boys soccer
“The situation has been pretty fluid,” REL head coach Jay Langlois said. “When we got word of school closing, I knew that we would have to be flexible. I gave the players a workout schedule to do on their own. It included our regular three sets of anaerobic agility sprints of 20 meters three days a week, light jogging two to three days a week and dynamic exercises and pushups every day.”
The Ganders were in the thick of a playoff race, seeking a second straight postseason appearance. In order to fine tune their ball skills, well, they need a ball.
“It would be nice if they are able to work with the ball as well,” Langlois said. “I thought that they would be able to workout on the school field but a couple days later the UIL closed all athletic facilities. Then they moved the date to resume competition from April 20 to May 4. Nobody can predict if that date will hold right now.”
Langlois believes if the season resumes, the UIL may scrap the remainder of the regular schedule and head right to the playoffs.
“My message to the team has been to continue the workouts, stay fit, and be prepared just in case we go back,” Langlois said. “The goal is to minimize the loss of fitness levels. It is impossible to maintain the level at which we left without having actual match and training conditions, so we just trust that they are taking care of themselves.”
GCM girls soccer
A historic season was put on ice for the Lady Patriots who were 21-1-1 when the pandemic threat began to strangle the nation.
“We have online learning taking place and I put together a list of things they can do to stay in shape, from running a few times a week, to workouts they can do in the comfort of their home along with some basic skills,” GCM head coach Roman Huizar said. “We are holding out hope that we will be able at some point return and finish out our seasons and so want to stay in somewhat good physical shape.”
Despite the hopes of continuing a dream season, Huizar’s focus is still on reality.
“The message is to stay safe and practice social distancing but at the same time doing some kind of physical activities in a safe environment,” he said.
RSS boys track
Ronald McDowell was just starting to get a feel of his Sterling boys track team and seeing good results from it when the world went pear shaped.
“Hopefully our athletes are using the training calendar for this month,” McDowell said. “We use ‘Remind’ to post our training program. If they are sticking to the program, then they should be near race ready if we can resume. We have a run calendar with a strength component for every month of the year tailored to the event and competition schedule.”
The coach is also prepared to deal with the potential of not coming back this spring.
“If we do not resume competition, we will transition to our recovery program - typically the May calendar - and then to our endurance and strength program which is our June and July off-season program,” McDowell said.
The Patriots boys and girls were more than halfway through the schedule when they were put on hold.
“During spring break, the kids were still going to the courts and playing,” GCM head coach Ismael Dutchover said. “Once things got bad, I told them to follow the directives from the district and to stay away from campus.
“Outside of that, no work outs or anything of the sort were given.”
Richard Miles was just seeing his team show a lot of potential for a strong finish when the campaign may have come to a premature end.
“Team members are practicing on their own in an attempt to maintain consistency,” Miles said. “It is very difficult for our players right now since the UIL prevents coaches from holding practices and Chambers County has put a 24-hour curfew on all kids 18 and under.”
With Harris County limiting much “non-essential” movement, the athletes will have to find a way to stay sharp.
“I am confident our players understand their health and that of their families are top priority,” Miles said. “Social distancing - on the course and on the range - is being adhered to by everyone regardless of age.”