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Oct. 14 2009 - 10:23 am | 2 views | 0 recommendations | 2 comments

H1N1 and youth sports — forget the post-game handshake

In Chilliwack, B.C., the good-game handshake/high five is gone, gone, gone, will be gone so long, will be gone gone gone so long, thanks to H1N1.

Just in case you don’t get references to early 1980s Canadian bands, or have never seen SCTV.

From the Chilliwack Times:

Parents of kids that play soccer shouldn’t be offended if handshaking is eschewed for the rest of the season.

Bruce Davies of Chilliwack Football Club recently sent out an advisory to coaches, managers, referees, players and parents about a new “end of game procedure” being implemented because of H1N1.

All Chilliwack FC teams have been told to implement the new procedure immediately that includes: offering three cheers to the opposing team; turning and applauding the opposing team and referee; and handshaking between coaches and referees.

It’s not just Chilliwack — if it hasn’t happened yet, extra precaution in youth sports will come to Boston, Chicago, Kansas, Europe, Asia or any other place that might or might not have had a big-haired band cop the name of its locality.

With the swine flu growing like a prize pig, precautions against any kind of unnecessary contact is under way to prevent the spread of the disease and to prevent the mass cancellation of events that took place in many places last spring, when H1N1 first emerged. Though in some places, it’s already been too late.

I feel like I’m in a bit of quandary, though, when I start coaching my daughter’s fifth- and sixth-grade coed basketball team in a few weeks. Even if there’s no post-game handshake/high-five, everyone is going to be sharing and touching the same ball. Is there a Purell product especially made for rubbing all over basketballs? Or maybe I should have everyone play while wearing latex gloves.


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    About Me

    A youth sports blog written by Bob Cook. He contributes to NBCSports.com, or MSNBC.com, if you prefer. He’s delivered sports commentaries for All Things Considered. For three years he wrote the weekly “Kick Out the Sports!” column for Flak Magazine.

    Most importantly for this blog, Bob is a father of four who is in the throes of being a sports parent and youth coach in an inner-ring suburb of Chicago. He reserves the right to change names to protect the innocent and the extremely, extremely guilty.

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