Major League Soccer players can begin voluntary individual workouts on team outdoor training fields starting Wednesday under coronavirus health protocols where government shutdown laws permit, the league announced Friday.
The move marks the first small step toward resuming the 2020 MLS season, which was halted after only two weeks due to the deadly virus outbreak.
A league-wide moratorium on small group and full team training sessions remains in place through May 15.
The MLS move comes after the NBA announced it would allow players to conduct solo workouts at team facilities starting next Friday where allowed under stay-at-home laws.
Up to four MLS players may train on the field at once, with the area divided into four quadrants and players limited to their zone with no passing or shooting between zones allowed.
Having players use team-operated fields allows clubs to control the environment, ensuring all involved adhere to social distance and safety protocols created by MLS with medical and disease experts.
Workout protocols do not allow access to other team facilities such as gyms, locker rooms and training rooms, except as permitted for players recovering from surgery or injury.
Teams must restrict access to essential personnel only, sanitize all training spaces and such equipment as balls, cones or goals between each workout session and check each player's temperature upon his arrival at the facility.
Teams must stagger player and staff arrivals and departures and designate parking spaces to maintain maximum distance between vehicles, with players required to use personal protective equipment in traveling to and from the field from parking lots.
Staff members must use protective equipment and stay at least 10 feet from players at all times with hand washing and disinfectant stations required to be used before and after all workouts.