USQ Update

MembershipUSQ Update

All Stages of Return to Play Guidelines for COVID-19

USQ and MLQ have updated their return to play guidelines, incorporating seven total stages. Teams must meet certain baseline conditions before moving beyond stage 2.

As detailed in the announcement on September 4, all USQ and MLQ teams are currently in stage 2 of the return to play guidelines. During stage 2 teams can have non-contact, outdoor practices with 25 people or less. 

Effective Monday, October 5, teams may move through stages independently based on their own state’s COVID-19 case numbers. There are basic requirements and multiple baselines that must be met as a team goes through the seven stages. The full return to play guidelines and baseline requirements can be downloaded here. They are also available on our website

As part of this update, USQ staff have determined that official and sanctioned events may not begin until January 1, 2021, at the earliest. MLQ official events may begin at a later date in 2021. 

On Wednesday, October 7 at 8pm ET, USQ will be hosting a Q&A session on the new return to play guidelines. Registration is available here. The program will be recorded and available on USQ’s YouTube channel later in the month. 

Basic Requirements

  • All USQ and MLQ teams are required to abide by these return to play guidelines.
  • Any team holding practices or games at a given stage must submit the checklist in Appendix A to their respective league - emailing it to the league contact designated at the end of this article - or fill out this form linked here. This step only needs to be undertaken once. 
  • All USQ and MLQ teams must report positive cases to their respective league within 7 days of a positive test result. 

Summary of Stages

To move up into stage 3 and higher, a team must meet the baseline conditions. 

Stage

Summary

Stage 0 No in-person events or activities
Stage 1 Non-contact, exclusively outdoor practices with 10 people or less
Stage 2 Non-contact, exclusively outdoor practices with 25 people or less
Baseline Conditions - Required to move up into and through stages 3-4 
  • 50 in 100,000 positive cases over a 14 day period in the state/province where the team is located and where they are traveling to
  • 7 days with a less than a 50% increase in positive cases in the state/province where the team is located and where they are traveling to
  • 14 days in the previous stage with no positive cases from players
Stage 3 Full-contact, exclusively outdoor practices with 25 people or less
Stage 4 Full-contact, exclusively outdoor inter-state play with no more than 2 teams or 50 people; no spectators 
Baseline Conditions - Required to move up into and through stages 5-7 
  • 20 in 100,000 positive cases over a 14 day period in the state/province where the team is located and where they are traveling to
  • 7 days with a less than a 50% increase in positive cases in the state/province where the team is located and where they are traveling to
  • 14 days in the previous stage with no positive cases from players and other attendees
Stage 5 Full-contact, outdoor inter-state play; non-contact, indoor practices with 10 people or less; and spectators allowed for outdoor activities only
Stage 6 Full-contact, outdoor inter-region play; full-contact, indoor practices with 25 people or less; and spectators allowed for outdoor activities only
Stage 7 Full contact, outdoor nationwide play; full-contact, indoor practices with 50 people or less; and spectators allowed for outdoor activities only

The full requirements of each stage can be downloaded here. They are also available on our website

If your team cannot meet the baseline conditions, they must wait a week before attempting to move up a stage again. 

These two positive case ratios were developed by the FISA Sports Medicine Commission, which supervises all medical and anti-doping aspects related to the sport of rowing. Members of this commission are certified medical physicians with specific expertise in sports medicine. The Women’s Flat Track Roller Derby Association is also using similar baseline conditions, including the 14 day waiting period in between stages. More information is linked in Appendix B of the guidelines. 

In order to assist teams in tracking the baseline conditions, USQ developed a spreadsheet and checklist that is in Appendix C of the guidelines. The spreadsheet helps teams calculate the positive case numbers over the previous 14 days and the increase in cases over the previous 7 days. The checklist goes over all the baseline conditions.

As a reminder, these guidelines are requirements that apply to all of quidditch in any state that a player, coach, staff, or volunteer resides or participates in. If state, local, and/or university restrictions are more restrictive than our current stage and corresponding guidelines, the state, local, and university restrictions will take precedence.

To track attendance, we recommend coaches and team leaders use the form here; it’s also available in Appendix A of the guidelines. Attendance records should be kept confidential to coaches and team leaders.

Positive Cases of COVID-19

If a player on a USQ or MLQ team contracts COVID-19 or is exposed to someone who tested positive, the team must inform their respective league within 7 days of the positive test result. Besides team contact information, no other personal information is collected when reporting a positive case. League staff will then guide the team through the quarantine and isolation process detailed below, making sure that all participants in team activities who might have been exposed are informed of the situation and taking the necessary precautions.

If a player on a USQ or MLQ team is exposed to someone who may have COVID-19, they must inform their team leadership immediately. The team leadership must then determine if any other players on the team may have been exposed through the original player. If there has been potential team transmission, then team leadership must report this to USQ, and everyone must follow the quarantine and isolation procedures detailed below. 

USQ teams must use this form to report positive cases or possible exposure. 

If a team has a positive case(s), then all participants in team activities who might have been exposed must quarantine for 14 days, and the individual(s) with the positive test result must isolate for 14 days. The team will move down to Stage 0. During this time, the team is prohibited from holding any in-person activities. This includes activities with players who may not have been exposed. 

If after the 14 day period there are no new positive cases, the team may resume activities in Stage 2. After an additional 14 days, if the other baseline conditions are met, the team may go back to the stage they were in before the positive case. 

If after the 14 day period there are more positive cases, then those potentially exposed must quarantine, those infected must isolate, and the team is prohibited from holding in-person activities again until there has been a 14 day period with no new positive cases. 

College teams must follow their school procedures regarding positive cases.

Please note that these policies apply all stages of return to play, including ones where multiple teams may be present. If there is a positive case from a participant who attended an in-person event with more than one team, then all participants must follow these policies and quarantine for 14 days. 

Consequences for Violating Return to Play Guidelines

USQ’s fair play policy has been amended to incorporate flouting public safety and return to play guidelines.

Intentionally flouting public safety and return to play guidelines: A person or team who is found to have played in a game, practice, or event when unsafe to due so in regards to school, local, state, or USQ/MLQ guidelines will be ineligible to compete at the next US Quidditch Cup. These consequences will be applied if a player or team practices outside of the stage that their state/province qualifies for.

To report a violation of the return to play guidelines, please fill out this form. Following receipt of the report, USQ’s gameplay team, in conjunction with the risk management team, will do a full investigation and make a determination on disciplinary action.

COVID-19 General Guidelines

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers general guidelines and recommendations for the public on how to limit the spread of COVID-19. They currently include:

  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and exercise equipment including balls. 
  • Thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. 
  • Wear a cloth face covering that covers your nose and mouth in public settings. 
  • Stay at least 6-feet away from non-household members. 
  • Cover mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. 
    • Throw out the tissue and wash your hands afterward. Alternatively, you can cough or sneeze into your sleeve. 
  • Stay at home if you are sick.

Questions

USQ:

MLQ: