Return to Play Guidelines: Facilities

January 07, 2021

IIn accordance with the latest rules and government regulations, the USTA Eastern section has created additional guidelines and recommendations to help parents, players and other spectators prepare for competitive play.   


The section recognizes that the COVID-19 pandemic has affected different parts of the section in different ways and with different timing. Therefore, governmental restrictions placed upon players may vary by localities, cities and states. The additional guidelines below delineate specific health and safety measures for those participating in or administering a USTA Eastern tournament or Junior Circuit event.


We know many play tennis to stay mentally and physically fit and active. Luckily, the sport is a natural social-distancing activity that limits close person-to-person contact. But the section needs your help to ensure play stays safe and healthy. Please keep up-to-date with evolving federal, state and local laws, rules and regulations regarding COVID-19. USTA Eastern will make every effort to revise its own guidelines based upon the most current updates. 


To review the most recent state and federal information, please visit the following links: 



  • If you are exhibiting any symptoms of the coronavirus. According to the CDC, people with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported—ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. These symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus: fever, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, new loss of taste or smell.
  • If you have been in contact with someone with known or suspected COVID-19 in the last 14 days.


For non-sanctioned tournaments listed on USTA digital platforms all of the below are strongly recommended but not required.


Printable PDF Checklist


Facility Recommendations (Management)


  • The host organization/club must comply with local government and health officials guidelines for the administration of youth sporting events and maintain regular contact with authorities. 

  • Capacity restrictions must be adhered to for both indoor and outdoor play. Follow all state and local guidelines on gathering restrictions. 

  • When spectators do not increase the number of individuals over state and local maximum capacity mandates, they may be permitted. 

  • Sign commitment liability (Safe Play) form. Click here to sign.

  • Do not provide any congregation areas at the court and/or facility. 

  • All common area chairs and tables should be stacked, roped off or removed from the area to prevent congregating and touching.

  • All gates and doors should be roped off or left open to prevent touching. If the facility has a wide open side entrance to the courts, its use is recommended.

  • All court gates and stair rails should be wrapped with caution tape to discourage touching, or they should be wiped down every hour.

  • Limit the use of indoor spaces by keeping all locker room and shower areas closed.

  • Mark out separation distances in toilets, at food outlets and other locations where people gather, including tournament offices.

  • Remove food offerings in common areas (fruit, granola bars, etc.)

  • Review USTA Playing Tennis Safely Guidelines for facilities.


  • Display signage about handwashing and hygiene techniques at strategic points such as sinks, eating areas, drinking areas and on the side of the court. 

  • Make disinfectant soap, hand sanitizers or wipes available at all main contact points.

  • Regularly remind and encourage everyone—particularly juniors—that they should wash hands often and adopt other principles of a good hygiene strategy. 

  • Clean all surfaces—including counters, tabletops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures and toilets—several times a day wearing disposable gloves. 

  • Provide containers to dispose of contaminated items, tissues and used personal protective equipment (PPE). Dispose safely.

  • For more on youth sports considerations, visit the CDC website.

  • Refer to USTA cleaning and disinfection considerations.


  • Display proper court signage indicating court #’s and directions to access those courts within your facility.

  • Consider different entry and exit routes to the courts/venue where possible, and ensure these routes are clearly marked.

  • Distance tournament players and spectators six feet apart. If possible, mark separation distances in the lobby area.

  • Place or remove benches/chairs on opposite sides of the court and disinfect after every match.  

  • All score tenders should be removed to prevent touching.

  • Remove water coolers or stations from the courts.

  • Have staff manage all line/court sweeping. 

  • Capture and retain accurate participant information in the event contact tracing becomes necessary.

  • If possible, broadcast announcements on public announcement systems.


  • Match scores will be reported by both players via email or text to the tournament director.

  • If a dispute occurs on court, the tournament director or court monitor can watch the match from a safe distance of six feet from both players ( i.e. net post).

Skip Advertisement


Related Articles

  • 18 & Over 10.0 Mixed Champions: Metro Region
    League Sectional Results
    September 18, 2023
    2023 Eastern League Sectional Championships are in full swing! Throughout the summer, USTA Eastern League teams from all of Eastern’s six regions are competing for the chance to represent the section at the National Championships. Check this page for the latest results, photos and more. Read More
  • What does it actually mean when you’re diagnosed with “tennis elbow”? Dr. William N. Levine, Chief of Orthopedics at NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia and Chair of the Department of Orthopedic Surgery at Columbia, shares his insights about the injury as well as the various measures players can take to avoid getting sidelined by it. Read More
  • Eastern Board member Joe Ceriello reflects on his 20 years in the tennis industry and how the game helped him come into his own. Read More