It is almost time for Capital Region sports to go indoors and with that comes some mask rules. It was just announced that indoor school athletes in the Capital Region will have to wear masks. This is regardless of vaccination status.

Parents and athletes throughout New York weren't sure what the mask rules would be for the winter and indoor sports. The New York State Department of Health has finally clarified mask-wearing for indoor sports in schools according to News 10 ABC. The director of the New York State High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA), Dr. Robert Sayas sent a memo with guidance on the upcoming seasons.

Dr. Zayas said that student-athletes must wear a mask while playing sports indoors regardless if they are vaccinated or not. There is only one sport that is an exception and that is swimming where it is impossible to wear a mask. The exception that it isn't tolerable for the athlete no longer exists. If athletes are not wearing a mask, they must be six feet apart. If this isn't possible, that athlete should not participate in that sport.

Dr. Zayas, in a memo, also talked about mask requirements elsewhere:

Masking is not required for outdoor sports. Unlike some prior guidance, CDC’s most recent masking guidance does not make an exception for school sports/activities where masking may not be “tolerable” to a participant unless the participant has an ADA-recognized disability. In fact, the CDC guidance recommends masking for activities in the same manner as for regular classroom/in school.

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