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Alabama high school softball "outside participation rule"

Apr 7, 2014
For those of you who live outside the state of Alabama and have the freedom for your children to play travel, club, recreational, or church softball at any time you want them to then be assured that those of us that are held hostage by the Alabama High School Athletic Association are envious of your freedom. Below is the text of the actual rule taken from the AHSAA web site;

A student who is a member of any school athletic team (grades 7-12) may not participate (includes practice) on a non-school team in the same sport during the school season of that sport. A student who is a member of any high school athletic team may not participate in an outside sport activity in the same sport during the school season of that sport.

Note: Olympic Development programs are exempted from the Outside Participation
Rule. One evaluation per month has been approved by the AHSAA.

Note: Private individual instruction is not considered an outside sports activity. Private
individual instruction is one-on-one instruction between one athlete and one
instructor and cannot be instruction with another player or groups of players.

A student who violates this rule becomes ineligible to compete on that school team or in that school sports activity for the remainder of that school season. Any student who participates on an outside team after the school sport season begins is ineligible to join that school team for the remainder of that season.

A team’s season begins the day of that team’s first contest and ends when that team’s season has been completed. An ineligible student cannot participate with an outside team after the school team’s season starts and then join the school team upon becoming eligible.

I have been told that Georgia, Florida and South Carolina do not have such a rule. Is there any other state that has such a rule in place? I would like to hear from any of you with children that play high school sports in other state about what, if any, rules there are in your state restricting participation on teams other then the high school team.
Feb 17, 2014
Orlando, FL
The FHSAA has no rules regarding outside participation. And what few other rules they have regarding TB and HS are never enforced. If they did a good number of the teams in the State Finals would be disqualified. I expect that in the next few years more of the best TB teams will go year round.
Last edited:
Jun 24, 2013
DD plays MS, so grade 6 – 8, no one cares what she does. 9th grade and above is when some rules kick in about the number of players from a school that can be on one team and the rule you mentioned above.
Feb 24, 2012
IN has same rule. IL has same rule in HS and MS. OH has same rule in HS and MS if the MS is a member school. Seems pretty typical for majority of states.
Jun 18, 2012
I know I'll take some heat for this but I think the time has come to remove sports from public schools. There may have been a time for team sports in the past, but now we live in an era when most sports are well organized outside the context of school.
Jan 18, 2010
In your face
I just don't get how some are against these types of rules. When in the world would you find time, and the energy, to do both? From mid March to mid May we play 50 games, and that's varsity alone. Non-game days, we're practicing 2-3 hours. I love ball probably more than most, but I couldn't imagine running our HS schedule and a travel at the same time.
Jun 24, 2013
I have my DD organizing a union for next year’s Team, wait a couple years before you remove sports from schools I want to see how it goes.

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