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Covid-19 Return to Play

by | Sep 9, 2021 | COVID-19, Sports Medicine

Returning to activity following infection with Covid-19 is important for overall health and well-being, but may prove difficult depending on the symptoms experienced during the infection. The American Medical Society for Sports Medicine (AMSSM), British Journal of Sports Medicine (BJSM), and American Association of Pediatrics (AAP) have developed and shared a return to play guideline that we recommend for our athletes. It reiterates the importance of following up with your physician after having Covid-19 prior to resuming sport.

Stage 1 (Day 1 and 2): 15 Minutes or Less

  • Light activity (walking, jogging, stationary bike)

  • Intensity no greater than 70% of max heart rate

  • NO resistance training

Stage 2 (Day 3): 30 Minutes or Less

  • Add simple movement activities (running drills)

  • Intensity no greater than 80% of max heart rate


Stage 3 (Day 4): 45 Minutes or Less

  • Progress to more complex training

  • Intensity no greater than 80% max heart rate

  • May add light resistance training

Stage 4 (Day 5-6): 60 Minutes

  • Normal training activity

  • Intensity no greater than 80% max heart rate.

Stage 5 (Day 7)

  • Return to full activity/participation (contests/competitions)

This progression adapted from Elliott N, et al, infographic, British Journal of Sports Medicine, 2020, copied from AAP COVID-19 Return to Sports.