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tkreegs

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Proud Parent
Jul 7, 2016
2
Mask usage is good in theory, but there are a lot of issues I foresee for the gymnasts. First off, they would have to be N95s to be truly affective, and those are pretty much impossible to get. Cloth masks are very minimally effective, but better than nothing.
The gymnasts would have to keep them on at ALL times, even during their turns, or cross contamination will happen. Condensation will build up from breathing and when they touch them to take them off and put them somewhere, they are likely to spread droplets.
Then there’s the safety issue of a mask slipping while tumbling, vaulting, etc and they can’t see their landing. Very dangerous.
The mask condensation issue comes up again with strength and conditioning. The harder they breath, the faster the masks will become saturated and useless, and also become a cross contamination hazard. MULTIPLE masks and individual baggies would be needed per gymnast, per practice. It could be done, it would just be a bit of a hassle.
I would recommend gyms that open soon have some kind of “Safety Officer” at practices for a while. This person would have the sole responsibility of checking temps and symptoms at the door, pulling and sanitizing mats and equipment after each use, monitoring mask usage, instructing gymnasts when and how to safely change out masks, monitor and implement hand washing/sanitizing schedules, monitor hand washing/sanitizing after turns, etc. Of course, this is not particularly cost effective, but it would allow the coaches to focus on practice and the gymnasts. A 2 hour practice would easily be cut in half without a solid monitoring and sanitizing schedule and plan in place.
Just my 2 cents on the matter. Can’t wait for my gym to reopen! #webleedorange
 
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Nov 19, 2017
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To any gym owner as they consider opening:
  1. Consult a respected, reputable attorney whose professional domain this encompasses.
  2. Consult a reputable physician in a position of authority who is respected in the Public Health Sector.
  3. Obtain written guidance from both of them.
  4. Only proceed at a time, and in a manner, that is supported by both.
This decreases the gym’s exposure from both a legal standpoint and from a public health standpoint.

The stakes are high in this pandemic.
This is not a “Make it up as we go” or an “Ask a bunch of friends what we should do” situation.
I'd consult with an epidemiologist not an MD. It's my doctor friends that have completely disregarded social distancing guidelines. They think it doesn't apply to them.
 
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JBS

ChalkBucket Founder
Staff member
Gold Membership
Coach
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Sep 3, 2005
7,642
Wisconsin
Everyone needs to understand that ChalkBucket is just a discussion forum. There is no need to call people out. If you need to find out who is not following some of the rules... just watch the news.

No one is expecting people to agree on this topic... just talk.

Reality is reality... right now I don' have to get my temperature taken if I walk into my local Home Depot... sure... maybe their employees do... but I don't. I don't have to wear a mask. I can try their curbside pickup and they will get closer than 6 feet to me... and without a mask.

Here's the thing... I'm in my house right now.
 

rjb123

Proud Parent
Aug 17, 2013
895
The cleaning the equipment thing- in gyms it is going to be pretty tough to do this without causing safety issues. that said, good hand hygiene done before and after each event should do much the same thing. You touch the vault table. you wash hands. You Touch Bars. You wash hands. As far as temp checks, while I understand that this may help folks "feel" safe, the reality is that this disease is being spread by those not showing symptoms or even mild symptoms (ie no fever). so honestly it is just to make ourselves *feel* better. (of course based on the assumption that no one sends their kid to the gym with a fever!). I think that the most important thing will be to have girls keep their own chalk/ water bottles, strap bar gloves, etc and to be constantly washing hands. Good basic hygiene. Maybe masks for coaches? And stay home with any illness.
 

Sk8ermaiden

Proud Parent
May 6, 2013
925
Mask usage is good in theory, but there are a lot of issues I foresee for the gymnasts. First off, they would have to be N95s to be truly affective, and those are pretty much impossible to get. Cloth masks are very minimally effective, but better than nothing.
The gymnasts would have to keep them on at ALL times, even during their turns, or cross contamination will happen. Condensation will build up from breathing and when they touch them to take them off and put them somewhere, they are likely to spread droplets.
Then there’s the safety issue of a mask slipping while tumbling, vaulting, etc and they can’t see their landing. Very dangerous.
The mask condensation issue comes up again with strength and conditioning. The harder they breath, the faster the masks will become saturated and useless, and also become a cross contamination hazard. MULTIPLE masks and individual baggies would be needed per gymnast, per practice. It could be done, it would just be a bit of a hassle.
I would recommend gyms that open soon have some kind of “Safety Officer” at practices for a while. This person would have the sole responsibility of checking temps and symptoms at the door, pulling and sanitizing mats and equipment after each use, monitoring mask usage, instructing gymnasts when and how to safely change out masks, monitor and implement hand washing/sanitizing schedules, monitor hand washing/sanitizing after turns, etc. Of course, this is not particularly cost effective, but it would allow the coaches to focus on practice and the gymnasts. A 2 hour practice would easily be cut in half without a solid monitoring and sanitizing schedule and plan in place.
Just my 2 cents on the matter. Can’t wait for my gym to reopen! #webleedorange

Masks should NOT be done for athletes. They restrict oxygen intake. There have been studies of this even just during this pandemic. Nursing homes where workers were feeling dizzy and faint so they started checking O2 levels and they were low. They had to provide them rooms to rest in without masks. And they weren't even exercising. They say if a mask is easy to breathe in, it's not doing anything, and there's a reason for that. I would never send my kid to a practice where they wanted her to wear a mask. That's likely more dangerous than her getting the virus.
 

Sk8ermaiden

Proud Parent
May 6, 2013
925
Based on what we know about the virus, the only thing that will actually help prevent spread of disease in any significant way is less people in the gym, and keeping those people farther apart. (Masks for everyone too of course, but that's not safe for athletes.) Of course frequent handwashing and sanitizing doesn't hurt anything, but it's not doing much to help either.

Since we know that the virus can just hang out in the air where it was breathed out for up to 3 hours, and it appears it can be recirculated through air conditioning systems, I'm a big fan of the idea of leaving all the big doors open for gyms that have them. Yes, it's about to get hot here in TX (already is some days), but I think it would go a long way toward minimizing stagnant air. And parents who really want to watch can set up outside with their lawn chairs.

I also don't have a lot of faith in people to stay vigilant for any length of time (and that includes myself.) I predict that almost anything that's difficult to implement or maintain, or that requires a lot of oversight (like keeping girls six feet away from each other at all times) will be virtually forgotten about within a few weeks, but maybe by that time we'll also be calming down a bit if we've been open a few weeks without a dramatic spike in cases, or be shutting back down if we did have a spike...
 
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JBS

ChalkBucket Founder
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Sep 3, 2005
7,642
Wisconsin
If anyone is seeing any ideas that I forgot to move up to the first post let me know.
 

profmom

Proud Parent
Nov 18, 2011
9,461
Region 7
Has anyone thought about what to do about staff members who are in higher risk categories? Some gyms have senior coaches and I've learned in discussions among my colleagues that some are at higher risk even though that is invisible from the exterior. Should they be wearing N95 masks during their shifts? Perhaps not spotting or taking special precautions after spotting?
 
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bogwoppit

Gold Membership
Feb 26, 2007
16,879
Has anyone thought about what to do about staff members who are in higher risk categories? Some gyms have senior coaches and I've learned in discussions among my colleagues that some are at higher risk even though that is invisible from the exterior. Should they be wearing N95 masks during their shifts? Perhaps not spotting or taking special precautions after spotting?


I mentioned upthread that the "at risk" probably should not be in the gym in the immediate future.
 

Madden3

Proud Parent
Aug 24, 2013
843
50
(This response only applies to the USA.)

As a parent, I appreciate the information on this thread about what gyms are doing (or considering doing) for when they reopen. I think it might also help to understand that monitoring is already happening and there are "official" guidelines either in place or being developed all across the country for “opening up” businesses.

First, the White House Task Force has come up with guidelines for the States to follow. This article walks through these steps and, importantly, the rationale. For more on each phase, follow the link in the article.

https://www.contagionlive.com/news/what-is-included-in-trumps-plan-to-reopen-america

I suggest that article because it contains basic reporting of the task force plan for monitoring, which I think has been overall poorly explained in the press. The plan is to use "sentinel surveillance" asymptomatic testing and to continue using the CDC’s existing apparatus for monitoring flu symptom reporting as an “early alert” system. According to the health experts on the task force, utilizing both practices will help identify areas of potential outbreaks. If you missed Dr. Birx’s presentation at the WH press briefing last week on this, that article I posted above covers the information she offered.

So as I understand it, each state is supposed to take these criteria and guidelines, and apply them to their own state data to create their own guidelines and phases for reopening businesses and other entities such as schools, parks and rec etc. Depending on the situation in a particular state, they may or may not need to increase testing or monitoring sites, hospital capacity etc. in order to meet what is required for each phase under the White House guidelines. Also, not all states "shut down" or placed restrictions on businesses and individuals to the same extent. A state that has successfully flattened their curve with less extreme measures in the first place could arguably be in a place to rationally "open up" more rapidly.

Each individual state (and further down, each county, municipality and school district) might place their own rules on businesses/entities based on what their specific data is showing them. So basically, each State will develop (or has already developed) a plan that will presumably include rules for businesses.

Because the situation varies widely not only from state to state but also locality to locality, these plans could involve opening up more businesses in some parts of the state before others, plans may also be done in cooperation and consort with neighboring states. Parents wondering when gyms in their area might open up, or wondering how things are going in their area as far as virus monitoring, might want to check what data is available on their state and local health departments websites. I suggest look for unbiased interpretation of data as well.
 

Peanut

Proud Parent
Dec 16, 2015
44
We've being doing virtual (6 hrs/wk) for 3 weeks. Our gym is looking at starting 6/1 for in-gym (1.5 hrs/week) starting with groups of 10. Kids/coaches will wear masks and stay 6 ft apart. Also, we're not going to be registering for any meets in the fall. Our season for all levels will begin Jan 2021. As of now ...
 
Apr 26, 2020
5
61
As I am now hearing that some clubs will be opening as early as Monday (April 27th, 2020)... please post things that you are seeing clubs do as they reopen from the COVID-19 pandemic. We can use this thread as a reference of ideas to help everyone out. I will move the ideas to this first post so they are clearly visible as the conversation in this thread continues on.

--==++ IDEAS FROM POSTS BELOW ++==--
  • Follow State & Federal guidelines
  • Initial opening with small groups of 10 or less
  • Following social distancing guidelines (6+ feet) with stations / drills
  • Frequent hand washing for the gymnasts and coaches
  • Wiping down equipment after each use
  • Masks
    • N95 vs non-N95
    • Issues with restricting oxygen for athletes
    • Just the coaches
    • Just the parents
    • Everyone
  • Shorter workout times
  • Screen for temperature/fever/symptoms at door
  • Hand sanitizing before each event
  • Consider some training outside (i.e. conditioning)
  • Starting up with basics and conditioning so there will be no need to spot
  • Each athlete will have their own chalk block kept in a Ziploc bag
  • Each athlete will have their own spray bottle for water
  • Leave shoes at the door or in a bag
  • Cameras with login for parents to see from outside of the facility
  • No people allowed in that are coughing
  • Stagger workout times
  • Stagger break times (or if practice short enough no break to limit congregating)
  • Consider supplementing in person training with online training
  • Wear masks in-between turns
  • Encourage parents to not congregate
  • Do not allow older coaches or staff with pre-existing health conditions to work initially
  • Limit parents
  • Place parent viewing seating at appropriate social distancing lengths
  • Extra hand sanitizing stations at entrance... parent viewing... in gym... etc
  • One way traffic as much as possible (an "in" door and an "out" door)
  • Consider “keep team healthy” policies (credits for missed classes due to illness)
  • Nightly equipment cleaning of high touch surfaces such as tables, chairs, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, sinks with EPA registered household disinfectant per CDC guidance
  • Leave gymnast supplies in the car between practices
  • Gymnast assigned a balance beam / drill / piece of equipment that only they use... then wipe down after
  • One at a time in the bathroom... surfaces cleaned after use
  • No use of foam pit or put mat on top of pit that can be cleaned
  • No locker use... they are too close together
  • No water fountain use
  • Sign in board at front of gym
  • Workout groups will be quarantined from gym for 14 days if anyone in the group tests positive for COVID-19
  • Eliminate contracts and attendance requirements
  • Far-UVC lights
I just joined Chalk bucket, we are a gymnastics gym stuck in the middle of building permits in California and I have been looking for a forum. We are proceeding with our construction required and waiting for Calif. to give gyms the green light. On your comment of groups of 10, are you thinking 10 athletes per session using the 4 stations and then another group of 10 for the next session? For our gym I was envisioning a group of 5 athletes and trainer per each of the 4 stations totaling 24 per session. I know membership might be slow in the beginning, but can you give me insight on your idea.
 
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txgymfan

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Sep 4, 2008
3,561
Houston
The amount of people in the building largely depends on the size of the available gym space. For example, WCC could handle many more than 10 gymnasts and one coach but a much smaller gym wound want less.
 

Aussie_coach

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Jan 4, 2008
4,026
Have any of your areas given a ruling in how many people in each area. We have a rule 4 square metres per person rule, for those places that are allowed to be open.
 

rjb123

Proud Parent
Aug 17, 2013
895
For grocery stores here it is a percent of capacity- so 50 percent of their capacity I think.
 

JBS

ChalkBucket Founder
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Sep 3, 2005
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Wisconsin
This thread has been turned into a poll... you can vote at the following link...

 
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PeanutsMom

Proud Parent
Jun 14, 2019
208
Coaches stay with only small groups and don't teach multiple classes so to prevent "cross-contamination" of kids. Start with just team, by level, in the gym at a time.
 

skschlag

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Proud Parent
Jul 19, 2011
11,286
Region 9
I can see it even starting with private lessons or semi-private lessons to start....or maybe conditioning small groups and some private/semiprivate lessons.
 
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profmom

Proud Parent
Nov 18, 2011
9,461
Region 7
I'd also feel safer if all staff, all the way down to young class coaches, were empowered and encouraged to exclude immediately from the gym anyone, whether parent or student, who refuses to follow new rules. Add it to the team contract.

I think starting up with basics and conditioning for the first few weeks to a month is a great idea for all sorts of reasons. It would probably do a lot to cut down on acute injuries.

This is all for later, but I think meets and meet prep also have to change drastically. Down the road, coaches have to rethink rules about allowing athletes to compete in meets if they miss practice the week or two before. Meet directors need to rethink policies on refunds to disincentivize the "oh we paid for this meet so my sick kid is going to compete!" States should think about how they write and implement policies for qualifying for state meets with an eye toward that problem as well. Gyms that rely on volunteers for meets may need to rethink how they structure roles so that families where volunteers may be in high risk categories can still contribute and those roles are reserved for them. I hope our state also puts in place a policy that some threshold of positive diagnoses + time frame can cause a gym to be deregistered from a meet. I think our gym will handle this well. I can think of others in our region in which I have approximately 0% confidence that they'll prioritize the health and well being of their athletes and their families over individual and team glory. I'd rather not have my kid rotating with them, thanks.
 
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