Even before the heightened cleaning protocols of COVID-19, fitness floor safety has always been a priority for recreation teams to help extend the longevity of equipment and maintain safety of patrons.
At the University of South Carolina, Michael Lagomarsine, the assistant director of Fitness, shared his team’s top three cleanliness and fitness floor safety protocols:
Fitness Cleaning Education
“We have increased our weight room staff and trained them to help prompt our patrons to clean all touch points before and after they use each piece of equipment,” he said. “Our student staff do a great job monitoring the floor and being observant so they can remind the patrons as needed.”
Multiple Safety Methods and Strategies
“We currently have both wipes and spray with rags for our patrons to use, and we encourage each patron to take a bottle and rag with them throughout their workout, but also have the wipes for smaller areas,” said Lagomarsine. “Additionally, we use electrostatic disinfectant sprays throughout the day at different times on all touch points in the fitness center. Using a reservation system lets us schedule in our deep cleaning throughout the day.”
New Safety Position
“We created a student position called the health check that is tasked with cleaning each touchpoint in the entire building every hour,” said Lagomarsine. “Our task list is very specific with the exact location and object that needs to be cleaned to ensure our staff clean each possible point every hour. Locations include railings of each staircase, doorknobs, locker doors, plexiglass barriers, etc.”
When it comes to effectively carrying out these practices, Lagomarsine said it starts with in-person training, is tested with on-going competency checks and is reinforced by student leaders.
“Connect2 has helped tremendously to communicate updates and tasks to each employee,” he said. “Tasks can be set to positions or individuals and we can create shared tasks throughout the day. Each task is detailed with pictures, videos and links to help ensure the student is successful. So, if there are 50 touchpoints that need to be cleaned this shift collectively by the three assistants, they will be able to know which points were already completed in real time.”
Overall, if you’re not sure how to best care for and maintain a specific piece of equipment or surface in your facility, Lagomarsine said to ask your vendors and reps. “Certain chemicals could be harmful [on equipment], and certain materials could be abrasive on pads,” he said. “The reservation system also helps us keep the fitness floor clean by allowing us to clean after each group of individuals work out.”