Infection with the novel SARS-Coronavirus-2 (COVID-19) has halted virtually all formal participation in sport and exercise. At long last, public health guidelines have begun releasing timelines for a graded reintroduction of both recreational and competitive athletics. However, questions remain for those individuals with prior COVID-19 exposure/infection regarding the safety of returning to exercise.​ The “new normal” is one of the many terms we hear repeatedly as the country begins its return to normal activities from the COVID-19 pandemic. Keeping 6 feet apart from other people, wearing a mask and frequent washing of hands are three of those important warnings.  

Click on information below for more information regarding the return of athletics during this pandemic.



  • Symptoms: <4 days of fever, >100.4°F, <1 week of myalgia, chills, and lethargy
  • Perform Minimum 7- Days Graduated Return to Play in 5 Stages


  • Symptoms: ≥4 days of fever, >100.4°F,  ≥1 week of myalgia, chills, or lethargy
  • Non-ICU hospital stay and no evidence of multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children [MIS-C])
  • Athletes with High-Risk Conditions (Cardiac, Asthma, Obesity, etc.)
  • Evaluation by their primary care physician (PCP) is recommended and MD note to return to activities.
  • Gradual return to physical activity may be initiated after 10 days have passed from the date of the positive test result, and a minimum of 10 days of symptom resolution has occurred off fever-reducing medicine.


  • For children and adolescents with severe COVID-19 symptoms (ICU stay and/or intubation) or MIS-C, it is recommended they be restricted from exercise for a minimum of 3 to 6 months and obtain cardiology clearance prior to resuming training or competition. Coordination of follow-up cardiology care should be arranged prior to hospital discharge. Other testing may be ordered based on the child or adolescent’s sign and symptoms.


​Stage 1: Day 1 and Day 2 - (2 Days Minimum) - 15 minutes or less: Light activity (walking, jogging, stationary bike), intensity no greater than 70% of maximum heart rate. NO resistance training.

Stage 2: Day 3
- (1 Day Minimum) - 30 minutes or less: Add simple movement activities (eg. running drills) - intensity no greater than 80% of maximum heart rate.

Stage 3: Day 4 - (1 Day Minimum)
- 45 minutes or less- Progress to more complex training - intensity no greater than 80% maximum heart rate. May add light resistance training.

Stage 4: Day 5 and Day 6
- (2 Days Minimum) - 60 minutes - Normal training activity - intensity no greater than 80% maximum heart rate.

Stage 5: Day 7
- Return to full activity/participation (ie, contests/competitions).

Smitty's Plan for O​rthopedic Rehabilitation & Training