Sonoma Valley United families,

Please see the below referring to the club’s Return to Play Guidelines which outlines our return to the field in 4 Phases. We ask that you take the time to read through these guidelines so that you are aware of what the club is doing to ensure that everyone (player, coach and parents) can return to the field safely.

These guidelines will service as protocol for our upcoming Competitive Tryouts and our Recreational program. They are subject to change and when that happens, all changes will be communicated to you and will be posted on our website.

As a reminder, while we have received news that the Shelter in Place order has been lifted, we unfortunately are still not able to use fields within the City or Sonoma Valley Unified School District. We are working on a proposal to be submitted to the City to allow the use of the Field of Dreams facility.

If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to one of Board Members, whose contact information can be found here.

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Sonoma Valley United

Return to Play Guidelines

Sonoma Valley United is pleased to announce that it will be returning to the field of play (slowly), this decision has not been made lightly and is done in alignment with the US Club & NorCal Premier. Accordingly, Sonoma Valley United has developed Return-to-Play Guidelines that will be implemented over four phases beginning with Phase I that can begin once we are granted access by the City of Sonoma and/or Sonoma Valley Unified School District. 

While many are going to be excited to return to play there are others who may be apprehensive. If a player, parent, or family is not comfortable returning to play – DON’T. We must demonstrate respect and courtesy for everyone’s feelings during this time and ensure that we provide a safe environment as we return to play.

Implementing the SVU Return-to-Play Guidelines will require a cooperative relationship between the Club, Team, Coach, Parent, and Player. While the Club and Coach must create a safe environment, the Parent must make the decision for their child to return to play. If, as a parent you are not comfortable in your child’s returning to play – DON’T. And finally, Players must be responsible to adhere to, and respect the social distancing requirements and contact guidelines that have been established.

Club Requirements:

  • The Club will communicate policy club-wide to coaching staff, parents and players, and provide regular updates and reminders.
  • Assign each team a coordinator to oversee compliance at the team level during training.
  • Provide coaches and team coordinators with PPEs (masks if needed) and sanitizing products.
  • Schedule training sessions so that one team/group is able to conclude and depart prior to the next team/group arriving, avoiding high traffic times.
    • Possibly a minimum of 20 minutes between end time of one session and the start time of the next.
  • Establish designated drop off and pick up zones for each field.
  • Training will be organized during daylight hours and outside.
  • Initially, training will be structured such that each player is a minimum of ten (10) feet from another.
  • Entry & Exit from the training site will be structured and managed such that players will not be within ten (10) feet of other players.
  • The club will not provide water and the players will bring their own water or sports drink to the training sites.
  • No food or beverage service will be available at training sites.
  • We ask that all individuals will wear face coverings at the training site, except players that are actively training.
  • All parents are encouraged to drop off their players and not observe training; if parents feel they need to observe training, they will be required to social distance and restricted to areas away from the training and players, specifically not within twenty (20) feet of the training area or areas of Entry & Exit.
  • The club will provide hand sanitizing stations for the coaches, players & parents to use.
  • Gates, if any, will be propped open to avoid points of contact.
  • All protocols will be posted on websites and at the training sites. Coaches and players will be required to adhere to the protocols in order to remain open.
  • Non-contact temperature check upon entry to the field
  • A signed waiver that will be sent out electronically to all parents will be required to turn in to the club

Team Training Restrictions:

  • Limited to 10 (ten) players per 1 (one) coach.
  • Zero tolerance non-contact policy (coach/player or player/player).
  • No parent(s) allowed on the field and spectators must stay outside the fence and uphold the social distance with the exception of a team safety coordinator allowed on the field. Must maintain social distancing minimum of ten (10) feet between participants throughout training, including breaks.
  • Practices must be conducted outdoors.
  • Players with fevers or other symptoms are not permitted to practice.
  • Players/coaches must use hand sanitizer before, during breaks, and after practice. Hand sanitizer stations will be provided by the club for entry & exiting the field.
  • Carpooling to and from training is not advised.
  • Players should wear PPEs (masks) when not actively training.
  • No Congregating Policy for players or parents in parking lots, at drop off zones, at entrance / exit areas of the facility, or before or after training sessions.

Coach Requirements:

  • Wear PPEs (masks) when in close proximity, six (6) feet of the players.
  • Will provide balls & cones to limit equipment being brought to practice, coaches will disinfect all equipment before / after use.
  • Coach will be the only one to handle cones or other equipment.
  • Do not allow players to utilize or share pennies, other equipment, or water bottles.
  • Report confirmed cases of COVID-19 to member organizations immediately and cease training.
  • Temperature checking upon entry to the field
  • All coaches will be required to follow Federal, State and local guidelines for social distancing, masks, and interactions.

Player Requirements:

  • If you are not comfortable with returning to play – DON’T!
  • Adhere to all Return to Play protocols.
  • Require parents to confirm their child is symptom free before attending training
  • To and from the field players will wear masks but while they train players can remove masks if they wish. The coaches and safety officer will ensure player maintain 6 feet of distance while 
  • Wash hands thoroughly before & after training.
  • Wash & sanitize training equipment (shoes, shin guards, clothing) after every training.
  • Do not share water, food or equipment.
  • Respect & practice social distancing.
  • Bring limited equipment to training (water only preferably) & place 10 (ten) feet apart.
  • No high 5’s, handshakes, knuckles, hugs or group celebrations.
  • All players will be required to follow Federal, State and local guidelines for social distancing, masks, and interactions.
  • Must check-in to hand sanitizer station and have non-contact temperature checked before entry to field

Team Training Sessions May Include:

  • Ball Mastery & Individual Skills.
    • Just like the at home program, players will be required to work within a 6×6 box and perform various skills/activities while staying in their own space.
  • Passing & Receiving.
    • Coaches will create unopposed passing & receiving exercises that will allow players to think, pass & move without ever making contact with another player.
  • Shooting & Crossing. 
    • Coaches will create unopposed shooting & crossing exercises (patterns to goal), that allow the players to work on crossing & finishing without making contact with another player.
  • Conditioning & Fitness Training.
    • Coaches will create various workouts that will allow the player to work in isolation but in a team environment.

As the evolution through each of the four phases occurs, the following should always be adhered to:

  • If you are sick or feel sick, or have been in contact with someone who is sick STAY HOME!
  • At risk individuals, youth or adult, STAY HOME!
  • Assign a ‘station’ for each player to place their equipment and that they should return to during breaks.
  • No one is to share water, towels or any equipment. This includes, but not limited to:
    • Balls; no activities should include picking up or making contact with one’s hand.
    • Shoes, socks or shin guards.
    • Jersey/Uniform.
    • Only coaches should place & pick-up cones.
    • Practice vest/bib/pennies; at minimum these MUST be washed after each use
      • vest/bib/pennies – not to be used in Phase I
    • No centralized hydration or refreshment stations (Phase I & II).
    • Spectators should be limited and must maintain minimum social distancing, as defined by the CDC and/or local public health officer.
    • Recommend having sanitizing options available. This may include:
      • Hand sanitizer.
      • Disinfectant wipes to be used to wipe down all equipment.
    • Respect for each individual’s choices must be top priority. If a participant wishes to wear a face mask this should be allowed and accommodations made if needed.

PHASE I will be defined by the following Restrictions and Activities:

RESTRICTIONS

  • No physical contact. This includes:
    • Drills that involve players or coaches within 10 feet of each other.
    • No high 5’s, handshakes, knuckles, hugs or group celebrations.
  • No more than 10 (ten) players per 1 (one) coach.
  • Every participant (player or coach) must maintain a distance of 10 feet from one another during any drill or exercise.
  • No use of vest/bib/pennies.
  • Practice times should be set to maximize social distancing and limit the number of people in a single area.
    • Recommend a minimum of 20 minutes between end time of one session and the start time off the next. If youth need supervision while waiting for pickup, adults should be at least ten (10) feet apart.

ACTIVITIES PERMITTED

  • Individual training, technical & fitness activities ONLY

ACTIVITIES NOT PERMITTED

  • Any drill or exercise that would/could involve participants getting closer than ten (10) feet apart or physical contact.
  • Activities that would create engagement from two or more players.
  • Activities that may create opportunity for an individual to come in contact with another’s equipment. This would include headers, throw-ins, etc.
  • No scrimmages or games.

SVU remains steadfast in our commitment to the safety of our players, coaches, referees, families, and communities. It is imperative that everyone understand their role and demonstrate a commitment adhering to the SVU Return-to-Play Guidelines which have been created based on federal, state, and local directives and guidance with the intent of providing a safe environment to get back on the field. If there is hesitation in returning to play – DON’T; just because you can doesn’t mean you must.

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