During these strange and abnormal times, a bit of normalcy is seemingly coming back to Keene State College. The bit of normalcy that is beginning to see a comeback is the return of Keene State’s athletic programs. The Equinox believes that sports returning to Keene State is a risky move but is overall a good choice.
Back in March, after the student body received an email stating that students would not be returning to campus after spring break, many student-athletes’ mental health began to decline. The Equinox has a strong belief that sports starting back up is a crucial component in keeping student-athletes’ mental health in stable condition. Many studies have shown that exercise has a direct correlation to having a healthy and sound mind and body. When everyone was first told to stay inside and not go and interact with others, it was really hard for many athletes because they couldn’t go and practice with their teammates.
The Equinox disagrees with Keene State College’s decision to allow spectators to attend sporting events. The Equinox feels this way because sources have stated that many attendees have not been following the social distancing policies. The college has not been the best when it comes to enforcing social distancing rules at these events. An attendee had said that these rules are more enforced during the volleyball scrimmages. Although according to the same source, outdoor sports have not been following these guidelines as strictly. The Equinox’s issue with this is that the college needs to be enforcing the social distancing rules at all times, regardless of whether or not the event is inside or outside.
Even though The Equinox disagrees with the college’s decision to allow spectators to attend sporting events, The Equinox does applaud KSC’s enforcement of attendees wearing masks during these events. Since it has been highly recommended by the CDC to wear masks wherever you go, The Equinox agrees with Keene State’s enforcement of mask-wearing during these sporting events. Each sport has a different set of mask-wearing rules that athletes have to follow. For example, volleyball players must wear a mask at all times during games while soccer players must only wear a mask when they are on the sidelines or in a group huddle; they are not required to wear a mask on the field. The Equinox finds it very odd that some teams have to wear masks at all times and other teams don’t have to wear them while playing.
The Equinox is very concerned with student-athletes traveling to other colleges and universities to compete in their games and meets. The Equinox feels this way because other colleges and universities might not have the same rigorous testing protocols as Keene State College. The Equinox is also concerned with other schools visiting KSC to compete because it could possibly lead to potential outbreaks of COVID-19 in the community.
In the end, everything comes down to how well Keene State College can enforce their COVID-19 guidelines and how fast they can react and adapt to outbreaks and cases of coronavirus.