Summer is halfway over and August, as well as the fall semester, are quickly approaching.

As COVID-19 continues to shift, rec centers are slowly opening back up. Three directors sat on the most recent panel for Campus Rec Magazine’s COVID-19 Virtual Roundtable: A Guide to Reopening to share what they have been up to in reopening their facilities.

The panel consisted of Teri Bladen, the director of Campus Recreation at Weber State University; Michele Muth, the director of Campus Recreation for CENTERS, LLC at Marshall University; and Janis Newton, the director of the Wellness Center at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC).

Topics covered included how to handle those who are not complying with wearing masks and the response if a staff member gets COVID-19; in fact, Muth shared handling a close call on her campus with staff getting the coronavirus. The panelists also discussed cleaning protocols, fall hours, swimming lessons, outdoor classes and renting equipment.

Below is a look at what each university is up to in terms of reopening guidelines for fitness and wellness facilities on campus:

Marshall University

  • Reopened one week after the governor announced they were allowed to in order to take time to train staff, fix tiling in the pool, etc.
  • They use GoCanvas on an iPad to record temperatures in order to not be in violation of HIPPA.
  • Staff are on three-hour shifts.
  • As part of CENTERS, they had access to Trello management tools, reopening sequences, signage, etc.
  • They are using Neptune Radio to announce safety protocols and social distancing reminders.
  • Many fitness classes are held outside.
  • Masks have been mandated since the first day the facility reopened.
  • Currently, the facility closes for an hour between 1:30 and 2:30 p.m. for cleaning. Muth is considering changing this due to the low number of users.
  • While closed, Muth used that time to continually revise the financial impact.
  • They pushed back membership versus giving out refunds.
  • All part-time employees were furloughed; 75 out of 200 are now back to work.
  • Kayak rentals have exploded, leading to the purchase of more kayaks.
  • The pool is open and on June 13 will begin small group lessons of about three to four swimmers each.