KHSAA Dead Period gives student-athletes a two week break

Published 8:00 pm Monday, June 24, 2019

Beginning Tuesday, June 25, all school sponsored athletic practices and workouts will come to a halt for two weeks during what is known as the Dead Period, part of the KHSAA’s summer sports section of the bylaws.

The rule, which was instituted by a nearly unanimous vote in the mid-1990’s, is intended to give both the student-athletes and the coaches a two week break from their sports to “recharge batteries, repair facilities, and get away from students”, according to the KHSAA website.

When the rule was enacted, most of the member schools supported a four week dead period, but ultimately it was decided on a length of two weeks and one day, encompassing the final week of June and the first week of July. 

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“Families were complaining that they could not plan vacations and family outings because of coaches’ requirements and athletes were complaining of burn out,” the KHSAA handbook says about the environment that lead to the creation of the Dead Period. “High school sports are to supplement classroom learning and allow for in-season competitive opportunities, not a year round Olympic or professional development period.”

During the Dead Period, no practice can be sanctioned by the school, be held in the school’s facilities, or be promoted by coaches and representatives even if it occurs off site. There is also to be no communication between coaches and personnel and the student-athletes, including texting and social media. 

The KHSAA’s advice to coaches, players, and staff:  “if you have to ask, the answer is likely no”.

The Dead Period extends until July 10, at which point teams are free to resume all normal practices, workouts, and meetings.