Yahoo – If you thought the flu epidemic in the New York metro area was bad already, it’s getting worse. In fact, now it’s even temporarily killing off two of the most treasured past times in youth sports. The Manhattan Soccer Club has discouraged both high fives and handshakes amid flu concerns. As reported by the New York Post and a variety of other sources, a Manhattan-based youth soccer club has acted to discourage its elementary school athletes from giving each other high fives or even walking through the traditional postgame handshake line. The reason? Officials are worried that contact from high fives and handshakes could spread flu germs.
In an email sent out to parents, the Manhattan Soccer Club (MSC) outlined a variety of ways to minimize flu risks among its players, including the following paragraph: At this point the MSC Board and the coaching staff would recommend that players not shake/touch hands with opponents after the games. The safest thing to do is to touch elbows. The coach or manager can explain this to the other team prior to the game. And while the soft-ban might seem severe, at least one parent expressed support for the ban when speaking to the Post. “It shows that [the club] is on top of what is going on with the flu outbreak, and they have come up with a great solution that shows good sportsmanship while also reducing the chance of transferring the flu,” Andy Stenzler, whose 10-year-old daughter plays with MSC, told the Post.
I’m legitimately curious to see what the state of youth sports is like in 10-20 years when I have kids. Rolling up to Little League practice with a bunch of little twerps in gigantic bubbles with only one slot in it where they can reach out and permanently hold their mommy’s hand while they’re shagging grounders. Taking breaks every 7 minutes to get water and hydrate and eat orange slices and bananas so they don’t get overworked. 10 doctors on hand at all times to immediately diagnose any excessive sweating or fatigue from running too hard. And of course a professonal statistician measuring playing times and keeping them exactly even, and a police officer with his gun loaded and safety off to discourage any harsh language that could possibly hurt feelings from the coach in between innings. Going to be fascinating to watch. Think if you look closely enough you can actually see your kid slowly morphing into a 4 foot tall, 85 pound vagina. That’s just the course we’re on in America it seems.