Updated COVID-19 safety rules from the county Department of Public Health were in effect Monday for youth and school sports, with the regulations requiring players and staff to undergo weekly testing, regardless of their vaccination status.

The updated testing requirement, which took effect Friday, applies to “moderate risk” and “high risk” sports. The list includes baseball, dodgeball, flag football, lacrosse, field hockey, softball, volleyball, basketball, boxing, football, hockey, rugby, soccer and wrestling.

The rules require weekly testing for all athletes and staff, with twice-weekly testing “strongly recommended” for those who are unvaccinated. All participants must be tested within 48 hours of any “inter-team” competition, with results available before the game begins.

For indoor sports, participants, coaches and spectators all must wear masks. Athletes must continue to wear masks while taking part in any indoor sports, removing them only temporarily to eat or drink. Athletes in water sports such as swimming or water polo can remove their masks while in the water.

“Given the increase in community transmission of COVID-19 and the predominance of the more easily spread Delta variant of the COVID19 virus, masking indoors, regardless of vaccination status, is essential to slowing the spread of COVID19 in the community,” according to the county’s guidance. “The Delta variant of the COVID-19 virus spreads more easily than strains of the virus that circulated in L.A. in the past.”

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