Austria back to practice – under strict conditions

The Austrian American Football Federation, AFBÖ, is permitting teams to return to practice May 18 – but under special conditions.

The Austrian Football League had announced on April 18 that the AFL season was postponed until the fall.

According to the latest announcement by the Austrian government, team sports training and practices were permitted as of May 15. The AFL has now recommended that teams commence official practices on May 18.

Below are recommendations from the AFBÖ based on the latest government regulations – in cooperation with the Austrian team sport associations – for the implementation or resumption of restricted training.

The coach has to monitor and adhere to the requirements of the practice
Exclude athletes from practice who do not behave in a compliant manner

Rules for organizing practice:
• The most important basic rule is maintaining a distance of 2 meters between participants
• Practice in small groups of up to max. 10 people (including the trainers/coaches, usually 9 athletes + 1 coach). Several small groups can practice on large sports fields, taking into account the recommended distances.
• The composition of the small group should remain the same for every practice session (the same athletes practice together)
• Different practice groups should not meet each other if possible. (timed training with a break between the units or separate groups that do not meet)
• The association draws up a corresponding plan for the practice times and locations of the respective groups
• The athletes/practice groups are always to be accompanied by a coach – especially in the case of children and minors (under 14 years) – duty of supervision!
• The athletes must comply with the rules/regulations to be followed before each practice session

Swarco Raiders quarterback Sean Shelton welcomes the return to the field:

“Being able to do group work outside is a big step in the right direction and is something I think everyone is excited about. It just shows that there is progress in the return to normalcy. We still need to be careful and thoughtful about how we operate but I am very much looking forward to getting back on the field with the guys.”

Coronavirus situation in Austria

A total of 16,109 cases of COVID-19 have been registered in Austria and 628 deaths are attributed to the virus.

Austria is currently in a phase of gradual, secure and monitored re-opening. The restaurant sector and museums opened May 15, accommodation facilities and recreational operations will follow on May 29.
The next step will be allowing cross-border travel to neighboring countries with results comparable to Austria. The opening of the border to Germany has already been announced for June 15.

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