Institutional Vacation Periods and Out-of-Season Sports

As we are approaching a three-day weekend, it is important to note the playing and practice season rules regulating vacation periods during the off-season. We know that student-athletes who are currently in their eight hour segment (out-of-season) are prohibited from engaging in required athletically related activities during an institutional vacation period. So, if a women’s soccer coach wanted to hold a one hour skill instruction practice on Monday, January 16 on MLK Day (an institutional vacation day), it would not be permitted because the soccer team is currently in an out-of-season segment.

Here is an NCAA interpretation that speaks to this issue:

Interpretation:: A vacation period is that period of time when classes are not in session and is identified as such within the institution’s official calendar. Further, based on Bylaw, a student-athlete may not participate in any countable athletically related activities outside of the playing season during any institutional vacation period (e.g., Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Veteran’s Day).