The Atlantic Amateur Hockey Association (AAHA) is the sanctioned Affiliate of USA Hockey, operating in the States of Delaware, New Jersey, Eastern Pennsylvania, and Rockland County, New York. The AAHA Return to Participation Guidelines (“Guidelines”) include recommendations and best practices for participating in ice hockey within its jurisdiction. These Guidelines are meant to supplement Federal, State, and Local regulations as well as local facility rules and requirements regarding the containment and spread of COVID-19. This document is not intended to modify or replace Federal, State, or Local health guidelines or medical or expert advice relating to participation in any activity. Please consult your state and local Public Health officials or your qualified healthcare provider about any specific questions you may have.
The AAHA RETURN TO PARTICIPATION GUIDELINES are subject to change as the need and regulatory requirements demand.
Everyone in the community can help bring competitive youth ice hockey back by consistently wearing masks in public, social distancing, practicing good hand hygiene, emphasizing the importance of disclosing exposures with parents and athletes, avoiding congregating in crowds, including informal gatherings, and avoiding traveling with teams to other areas that aren’t practicing similar measures to control the virus. These measures will help decrease the virus in the community and allow all of us to get back to the game we love.
The AAHA does not direct or control the opening or operations of rink facilities, and rinks may impose measures that are stricter than, or in addition to, those outlined in these Guidelines. Rink facilities are required to follow Federal, State, and Local Executive Orders as well as Department of Health mandates. To the extent your local rink facility hosts AAHA-sanctioned activities or events, the following is applicable:
Participants should be aware of the rink facility’s Policies, Procedures, and Operating protocols prior to arriving at the facility.
All AAHA Associations should develop their own plan for returning to the rink facility, which should conform to all Government requirements and these Guidelines.
The following requirements are directly from the State regulations of Delaware, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. Please review the links at the end of these Guidelines for further detail. These points of emphasis may not be applicable in all locations within our Affiliate, but where required by governmental regulation or guidance, they must be followed. These are separate from the AAHA recommendations beginning with item 4 below. The AAHA recommendations are a supplement to and not in place of current Federal, State, or Local guidance.
The AAHA recommends the following:
The AAHA does not sanction contact practices or competition for its membership in any rink facility where these activities are not permitted by Federal, State, and Local governmental or Public Health regulation or guidance. Any such activity that is held in contradiction to this statement is not covered by USA Hockey insurance. Associations must share this information with their membership.
As previously stated, these Guidelines are not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment, or for the guidelines of the federal, state, or local health authorities. Your child’s participation in any sport, and in particular, organized amateur hockey under the auspices of USA Hockey and the AAHA, is a personal choice for all parents and/or guardians. Exposure to COVID-19 is possible, even using the most extreme caution. Information regarding COVID-19 is constantly changing. We encourage our hockey families, coaches, officials, and volunteer and paid administrators to stay current on the latest developments and information on COVID-19.
Please see the following links below for additional reference.
CDC – If You Are Sick
Aspen Institute Project Play
CDC Considerations for Youth Sports
State of NJ COVID-19 Dashboard
NJ Guidance for Sports Activities July 9, 2020 (Links to pdf)
Commonwealth of PA COVID-19 Information Guide
Pennsylvania Guidance for Sports Permitted to Operate During Covid-19 Disaster Emergency
State of Delaware COVID-19 Response
Delaware Play Safely Sports Guidelines
State of New York COVID-19 Response
New York Interim Guidance for Sports July 6, 2020