Pickleball in the Time of Coronavirus
Being a nomad has a myriad of benefits, and we have found very few drawbacks. For pickleball enthusiasts (read addicts) like Ky and myself, playing on different courts with different people is one of the prime plusses. Right now in the time of coronavirus, we are certainly taking many more precautions than we did in the Time Before Coronavirus (TBC).
Recently we played on a court in northern California with someone who was diagnosed with the virus. He caught it at work, and despite not feeling well, he came to the courts and played with quite a few people. His boss ordered him to get a test. His results were positive, but many people he had played with and potentially infected did not know about his situation until some days later. Upon hearing the news six days after we had been on the courts with this fellow, we immediately went and had a test performed on a Thursday afternoon.
It was relatively easy, very quick and free. Ky had a test performed previously as required by a doctor before having a minor medical procedure done. He was not a big fan, and he had me a bit scared of having it done. He complained about the q-tip up the nose treatment. However, any woman who has been to a well-woman check up, or had a mammogram, scoffs at the weak knees of men for this type of test. Please do not let fear of the test keep you from going to get one done!
Speculum used in well woman check
Cotton swab - which would you prefer?
We began a period of self quarantine. Because our test was done just before the weekend, the results were delayed by just a bit.
Tick Tock, Tick Tock - Days without playing pickleball go by very slowly
On Monday morning we got our negative test results. Several friends, who had gone to be tested after playing pickleball with the infected person, got their results around the same time. Good news traveled quickly and very fortunately, none of our friends or anyone else that we heard of had contracted the disease despite playing pickleball outdoors with the person who had tested positive.
This is now the third time we have heard news of someone playing pickleball outside, and then finding out that they had coronavirus. The first two were unrelated cases in Chandler and Tempe Arizona. To our knowledge, no one playing in those two groups was infected.
Many courts have covid-19 safety rules with guidelines posted at the courts. In order to stay safe, we follow those guidelines. We have adopted measures such as sanitizing our hands and balls are wiped before and after every game we play. We also wipe down the handles and faces of our paddles at the end of our play time. We're careful not to touch our faces while playing.
The USAPA also has well written guidelines HERE.
Between games we stand at least six feet apart while chatting. Some people wear masks when they are not on the court and others just keep an extra distance apart. A few wear masks while playing. It's difficult to do, but an extra measure of caution for those most at risk is a good idea.
"Great Minds Dink Alike" Mask