Previously, The College Tribune reported that University College Dublin’s sport & fitness centre would reopen on July 20th. However, since the government announcement of the speeding up of phases, the gym was permitted to reopen as of the 29th of June. The fitness centre decided to reopen on July 1st with extensive safety measures in place.

The Sport & Fitness centre have released a list of rules and measures on their website. Most notably, the Olympic sized swimming pool will be reduced to a 60- person capacity, with a maximum of 12 people per double lane. Swimmers are being told to arrive “beach ready” (already wearing swimming gear beneath clothes) and to minimise time spent showering and in the changing village. Further to this, the sport centre will not be providing any pool equipment to borrow, as you are expected to bring your own. The changing areas will be fully stocked with hand sanitizer stations and attendees will be expected to wipe down cubicles and lockers after usage.

The Gym will feature a booking slot for studio classes, with each of the three studio floors operating with 2 metre markings to enforce social distancing. The guidelines stress that the sports & fitness centre will operate on a ‘no towel, no entry’ basis. Participants are also being asked not to arrive earlier than 5 minutes before a class commences. This is in order to minimise the gathering of groups.

The gym floor will have markings to enforce physical distancing, and the sharing of machines or “working in” is not allowed. This is in order for people to wipe down each exercise machine before and after every use. Notably, the UCD gym floor is currently operating under a walk-in basis. This is contrary to many gym chains such as FlyeFit and Ben Dunne Gyms, who are operating under a time-slot booking basis. The management are using an alternate method to ensure distancing, by limiting entry at their discretion “in order to prevent overcrowding on the gym floor.”

The Sport & Fitness centre have said that the document of rules is a “working document” and “it is expected that some rules may be added, removed or modified in line with government guidelines.”

In a previous statement to the College Tribune the Sport & Fitness centre have said they aim to “make every visit as safe and enjoyable as possible for our students.”

Luke Murphy – Co-Editor.