The YMCA of East Tennessee announced that all of its branches will reopen on May 1, after it was closed for more than a month.
The YMCA said that it was still developing plans to make facilities safer to use. They said that staff already took several precautions to make facilities safer, such as installing new air filtration systems, upgrading HVAC filters and sanitizing facilities with Ionopure.
Swimming pools, child watch, steam rooms and saunas will stay closed until further notice. Group exercise classes will continue to meet, but will also follow social distancing guidelines.
Officials with the YMCA also said they are scheduling staff who will be responsible for cleaning and sanitizing equipment throughout the day. Members who go to the YMCA will also notice new markers in common areas to enforce social distancing.
All members and staff will need to wear a face-covering while in the facility, and members are asked to wash their hands after entering a YMCA branch. Members are also asked to limit workouts to 45 minutes and to maintain 6 feet of distance between each other.
No guest passes will be given out, either. Officials said that members will not be allowed to use facilities for pick-up basketball, contact basketball or other contact sports. Basketball gyms will be open for individual play only.
Officials said they would email members with a full list of new guidelines to slow the spread of coronavirus and keep people healthy later. A list can also be found online.
Knox County and Knoxville leaders announced that they developed a phased reopening plan which will allow several businesses to open their doors on Friday, including gyms.
The YMCA closed to help slow the spread of coronavirus on March 20.