Athletics and Fitness

Last Updated: 3/25/2021

Spring Athletics In Jeopardy

Several sports teams have had contests canceled this week. Spring sports are in jeopardy without a full-fledged recommitment to prevention strategies and behavior changes.

We have delayed the start of outdoor intramural sports.  

In coordination with the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC), RWU announced earlier this month that we will hold varsity athletics games for the spring season. In collaborative planning with athletic directors in the CCC, we have decided that fans will not be permitted to attend events for the health and safety of our student-athletes and coaches and to provide the best opportunity for a successful season.

We will revisit the spectator policy later in the season.

Fitness Center

The Fitness Center is open.

Like last semester, it opens for one-hour workout slots, then closes to clean for 30 minutes. Access to the Fitness Center is by reservation only: Walk-ins are not allowed. The maximum number of people in the Fitness Center per one-hour workout slot has been lowered to 35. Any campus community member participating in RWU's testing program can use the Fitness Center as long as they make a reservation.

Fitness Center Health and Safety Protocols
Athletic Training Health and Safety Protocols

Are we in compliance with State and CDC Guidelines?

Yes.  We are meeting and exceeding the standards.  We are using the Reopenri website for guidance and had a member of the RI DOH come in and do a walkthrough prior to opening. 

We have adjusted our original limits of 50 patrons, to 35 until we get through some testing cycles.  How was this number determined and what has been done to safely accommodate these number?

According to CDC and State Guidelines in a Fitness Center like ours, we are allowed one person per 100 square feet.  Our Fitness Center is approximately 9000 square feet.  At 35, we are well under our allowable number.  All Cardio and Strength equipment has been spaced at least 6 feet apart. We are using the stretching area and the racquetball court for the excess equipment to allow for more physical distancing.  Anything equipment that could not be spaced 6 feet or farther apart has been taken off line. 

Workout sessions are only 1 hour in length.

Masks are required at all times in the fitness center including on cardio equipment

Note:  we have reduced available reservations to a cap of 35 until the University has fully completed check-in clearance and return to work testing of students and employees

What are the HVAC and outdoor airflow situation?

Facilities has upgraded and expanded the capacity of the HVAC system and installed special filters (MERV 13).  With this upgrade, more outside air is coming into the Fitness Center and Gym.   8 (5 downstairs & 3 upstairs) Germicidal Ultraviolet lighting system was also installed in the Fitness Center to help kill bacteria and inactivate viruses.   The system works best in a contained environment, therefore the exterior doors will be left shut. 

Will students be encouraged to create “cohorts” by cementing a commitment to regular, particular gym hours?

“Cohorts” will be recommended but not required since all cohorts change daily based on class schedules, residence assignments, and dining schedules.  In addition, individuals often prefer to work-out alone or may not have a cohort. 

Fitness Classes

All Fitness Classes have been discontinue for the semester, we will be exploring options of possible virtual classes.

What are the guidelines for sanitizing/cleaning equipment between uses, as opposed to a 30-minute scrub down between hours?

According to Reopen RI, we need to allow for adequate time between sessions (e.g., 30 minutes) to thoroughly clean the equipment and exercise space. During our 30 minutes intervals, we use the disinfecting mister machine on all upholstery, equipment, dumbbells, cardio and all places that could be touched by patrons.

When students sign up for their reservation through IMLeagues, they receive instructions before confirming their spot confirming that they accept responsibility for  cleaning equipment before and after each use.   Patrons are asked to use one piece of equipment at a time, i.e., no circuits or “super setting,” and they must bring their own personal use close contact equipment like floor mats, jump ropes, bands, foam rollers etc.  The Fitness Center will not provide these items. 

We have signage explaining that people need to wipe equipment before and after each use and our fitness center staff will issue reminders and monitor compliance.

Work-study staff will be trained in proper cleaning and disinfecting procedures as a condition of employment.  They are walking the floors to make sure masks and cleaning are being done by patrons.

How many sanitizing stations are set up in the gym?

We have a total of 11 wipe down stations in the fitness center. There is signage around the fitness center explain how to properly clean equipment

Are patrons advised/encouraged to bring their own equipment (yoga mats, jump ropes, barbells, etc.?)

Yes, when patrons sign up for a reservation, they are told we do not have these items available for use.  We have removed all mats, jump ropes, etc.

Will, there be set, separate hours for anyone who may be vulnerable, supposing we have such students on campus to visit the gym?

Not at this time but we can reevaluate as we move along with this new process

Will egress be marked one-way, etc.?

Yes.  We have a separate entrance and exit with directional arrows on the floor.   

Is there temperature screening?

Yes.  Upon entering, every patron must stop at the thermal scanner.  The thermal scanner is a facial recognition system that records the patron temperature. The same scanners are used in dining and library.  The reservation system will keep a record of who entered the facility at a particular time to assist in any necessary contact tracing efforts.

How is Contact Tracing Handled?

Through the reservation system (IMLeagues) and the Thermal Scanner, we are able to see and track who has used the facility and what time/day there were there.

What is the guidance for the pool?

The Pool will be opening once we get lifeguards in place.  Use will be reservation only.  Temperatures will be taken before entering the facility.  Patrons will enter through the building and exit a door leading directly to the street to create a one way traffic flow.  Pre & post -swim showers are available in the locker rooms.

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