The pandemic upended the lives of people across the country. It forced businesses to close, which resulted in job losses. The health crisis also forced a stoppage in sports and physical activities after the authorities implemented shelter-in-place orders to stop the spread of the disease.
The pandemic also forced the postponement of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics for a year. And even as it pushed through a year after, the authorities implemented strict rules to prevent a super spreader event. The closure of sports and fitness facilities resulted in lost revenues for the owners. Still, it also affected the physical and mental health of people in different parts of the country.
Due to this, sports stakeholders implemented strict measures so that they could open their facilities. Here are the things that owners of these establishments implemented to ensure the safety of the people using their facilities.
Safety Plan for Sports Facilities
Before opening their facilities for use, owners of sports and fitness facilities developed safety plans to protect the health of their clients. The safety plan incorporated measures and procedures to reduce the spread of the virus.
The plan also included measures to encourage social distancing and wearing of protective equipment. Sports facilities also ensured their facilities were cleaned and disinfected in between use.
Aside from keeping the facilities safe from the virus, owners of sports facilities, physical fitness gyms, and martial arts schools should get liability insurance from reputable insurance companies. These companies cover liability and property claims against owners of these establishments so that they can focus on keeping their facilities safe and secure for their patrons.
Sports facilities had to enhance airflow in their premises by opening windows and ensuring internal doors were open. If the location of the facility made it impractical to open windows, the facility had to install mechanical ventilation systems that provide fresh air inside. The systems should also prevent the recirculation of air indoors.
A good ventilation system uses a displacement ventilation process since it lowers concentrations of aerosols in occupied areas in the facility. This system reduces the risk of infection inside the facility. Most sports and fitness facilities use mixing ventilation systems that bring outdoor air into the premises to dilute the air inside the establishment. But this system does not effectively remove aerosols inside the facility.
Due to this, owners of these facilities have to implement other measures to prevent the spread of the virus. It also encourages facilities to install displacement ventilation systems to keep the users safe from the virus.
Sports and fitness facilities should control the movement of people inside their premises. This encourages physical distancing and minimizes crowding in the facility. They can control entry and exit points in the facility to prevent people from entering the premises at the same time.
At this point, setting capacity limits in sports facilities can minimize crowding. The limitations should be implemented during sports events to encourage physical distancing among the spectators. These facilities should maintain a two-meter physical distance between spectators. They should also limit the total number of people inside the facility during the event.
The pandemic highlighted the importance of cleanliness to ensure the safety of everyone. Due to this, sports facilities should perform regular cleaning and disinfection activities on their premises, especially on high-contact surfaces.
Gyms and fitness centers should clean and disinfect their equipment in between use. They should also set up hand sanitizers in strategic locations in their facility. Implementing a contactless payment system should also be used in these facilities.
Additionally, the staff and trainers should practice good hand hygiene by washing their hands regularly. Getting vaccinated also reduces the risk of infection, especially among front-line members of the staff and trainers.
The facility should also lower the volume of the music they play inside the premises. When the noise level is low, people can avoid shouting or going close to each other when they talk.
Remind Customers of the Rules
Owners of sports facilities should make sure that their staff will remind customers about the rules and measures in the facility. They should inform the customers of their responsibility in keeping the premises safe for everyone and controlling the spread of the virus. This is particularly true with the surge in the number of cases due to the presence of new variants.
The customers should also wear a face mask if the state or local government requires it. Additionally, the facilities should remind customers to observe physical distancing whenever necessary.
The pandemic affected sports facilities across the country. These facilities had to implement measures to ensure their customers and staff stay safe until everything goes back to normal.