How did you make decisions about your safety protocols?
With guidance from health officials, government leaders, Y-USA the Valley Shore YMCA developed our reopening plan. The plan outlines our COVID-19 mitigation strategies, and many thoughtful, informed discussions about how best to resume operations and safely serve members and program participants
When will my favorite class/amenity/activity be back?
We are committed to following all regulations from the State of CT according to the current phase in order to protect our members. Our ability to operate our facility is dictated by building capacity, social distancing regulations, and our ability to ensure compliance. We will align and update our operations with each successive phase of the Governor’s Reopening Task Force. When we can ease social distancing requirements and building capacities, we will resume operations as close to traditional operations as possible. While most activities and programs are running, the following areas are closed for this reason: showers, sauna, ChildWatch, group swim, aquacize and youth swim lessons.
Are there new hours?
Yes, the new hours are posted on our website and are as listed.
● Monday through Friday 7:00 am – 7:00 pm● Saturday 7:00 am to 4:00 pm
● Sunday 7:00 am- 1:00 pm
These reduced hours will allow our staff extra time to clean, sanitize and “set the stage” for you as we ease into this first phase of reopening. We will continue to review and make adjustments as needed.
With reduced hours, how will the Y make sure you don’t become crowded?
Due to social distancing requirements, facility capacity and class size will be limited. The Y will abide by capacity requirements set by Governor Lamont per his latest Executive Order. We will be limiting the number of people in our buildings by utilizing a new software called Appointment King. You will be able to reserve space in your favorite workout space 1 week in advance and 3 times a week. Reservations for the following will be required:
● Cardio training
● Strength training
● Group Exercise
Why aren’t the showers open?
Showers are closed until at least phase 3. We are not able to safely open them and ensure compliance with the current regulations.
When will the YMCA hours return to the pre-pandemic hours?
We will continue to assess our hours of operation as the regulations and restrictions are updated and demand grows. We anticipate opening earlier on some days in the Fall, but will make that decision once we receive more information about changes in the CT Reopening Phase plan.
Will you have special hours for seniors?
No, we do not. Seniors are welcome to come any time, but at this time we are not offering senior-only activities due to the Governor’s recommendation that seniors refrain from public activities. We recognize that individuals can make their choices freely, but do not want to actively lead activities that draw in large groups of seniors against the advice of the reopening task force.
Do I have to be a member to be at the Y?
During Phase Two, only active members, will be allowed access to the Valley Shore YMCA facilities and programs to ensure that we can maintain our facility limits and support our current members. CT Alliance of YMCAs have suspended the Y’s Nationwide Membership at this time.
What will I have to do to check-in at the Y?
If you have a fever or don’t feel well, please stay home. Before access is allowed in our YMCA and/or programs, all staff, members, and participants will be required to complete a health assessment, which consists of a temperature check.
What happens if I don’t pass the health assessment?
If you have a temperature of 100.4 F or greater, you will be asked not to return to the Y until you have been fever and/or symptom-free for 48 hours. You will be encouraged to get tested for COVID-19 and notify us if you test positive.
What happens after I pass the health assessment?
Members will move to scan their membership card, check-in, and proceed to their scheduled appointment area.
Why do you have to take my temperature?
Your safety – and the safety of everyone in our buildings and programs – is our number one priority. We are taking every precaution we can to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19. Temperature checks are among the CDC’s recommended mitigation strategies.
Can you tell me my temperature?
We can show you the digital thermometer for you to read the temp on your own. In order to protect your rights under HIPPA regulations, we are not allowed to announce your temperature.
How long will it take to check-in? How early should I arrive before my appointment begins?
We expect the check-in process could take 5 minutes, depending on how many people arrive at the Y at the same time. To be safe, we recommend arriving only 10 minutes before your scheduled class to ensure social distancing.
Do I need to bring my own mat for working out?
Yes, you will need to bring your own yoga mat. Additionally, members need to bring their own yoga blocks to class if needed.
What safety protocols will I be required to follow while at the Y?
● Members and participants will be asked to follow 6-foot social distancing guidelines set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) while in common areas.
● Members and participants are required to wear face masks while in common areas. While doing physical activities members are asked to stay 12 feet apart.
● Hand sanitizing stations and disinfectant spray for equipment will be provided throughout the facility. We also encourage everyone to wash their hands frequently with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds.
● Members will be asked to wipe down any equipment they touch before and after use with the disinfectant spray provided throughout our facilities.
What happens if I don’t want to follow these safety protocols?
Members and participants who fail to comply with new policies and procedures are putting others at risk. They may be asked to immediately leave the facility. Refusal to comply with these protocols, may result in membership and participation suspension and ultimately termination.
Why do I need to sign a new waiver?
The waiver is the same one members sign when joining the Valley Shore Y, but there is an additional COVID-19 specific waiver to sign. Additionally, we are going paperless and you can now sign the waiver electronically.
What safety protocols are employees required to follow?
● Staff who have a fever or are not feeling well are told to stay at home. All staff will be required to complete a temperature check, before every shift.
● Employees, except Rescue Ready lifeguards and Group Exercise instructors teaching class, must wear face masks during their shift.
● All staff will be required to practice proper social distancing while at work.
● Hand sanitizing stations and disinfectant spray for equipment will be provided throughout the facility. We also encourage our employees to wash their hands frequently with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds.
● Cleaning will now be a major component of all Valley Shore YMCA job duties. All staff will be required to clean and disinfect surfaces often. There are no exceptions.
Are there any options for members who do not yet feel safe to return to the Y?
We are expanding our virtual programming that is available to members. Follow us on Facebook for more information.
How often does the Y clean its equipment and facilities?
Employees clean equipment and frequently touched surfaces at least three times daily. We also encourage members to wipe down exercise equipment before and after use with the disinfectant spray provided on the wellness floor. Additionally, we will be disinfecting our entire facility daily with an electrostatic sprayer using an approved EPA disinfectant.
What kind of cleaners does the Y use?
The Y will only use products on List N: Disinfectants for use against SARS-CoV-2 that meet the EPA’s criteria for use against the virus that causes COVID-19.
What if the wipes dispenser is empty or the equipment is dirty?
Please notify a staff member who will address your concerns immediately.
What programs or services will not be available at the Y?
During Phase Two of our reopening plan, the Y is unable to offer the following programs and services due to new safety protocols:
● No Open Gym (i.e., Pickup Basketball or Pickleball)
● Group Swim Lessons Suspended
● Amazing Kids Suspended
● Sauna Room Closed
● Shower use suspended
● Recreation/Family Swim
Will the pool be open?
The pool will be open. Lap swimming will be allowed with two swimmers per lane at a time. Reservations are required for Lap Swim through our new online reservation system. When coming to swim please come dressed and showered prior to your swim time. Swimmers are required to wear their face masks before and after their swim.
Will locker rooms be available?
Yes, please observe social distancing requirements inside locker rooms. There are also new processes for locker room and shower use:
● We are limiting the availability of lockers in order to ensure adequate cleaning, disinfecting and social distancing.
● Showers are not available at this time.
● The sauna is closed at this time.
● Please move quickly through the locker room to ensure proper social distancing and to make room for the next reservation.
Will the sauna be open?
Saunas will not be in use at this time due to requirements due to social distancing requirements, cleaning and disinfecting.
Will pickleball or basketball be available?
At this time pickleball and basketball will not be available. The requirements for social distancing are having us use the gymnasium.
Will you have summer camp?
Yes! We will be having camp at Camp Shore this year! We are providing all of the aforementioned safety precautions.
● Capacity is limited due to social distancing requirements.
● Daily health assessments, including temperature checks, will be required.
● Registration is available online. Call 860.399.9622 with questions about Summer Day Camp.
Can I place my membership on hold?
Thank you for your patience and understanding during these unprecedented times. It is our privilege to serve you and our community. While we understand you may feel the need to place your membership on hold, we are encouraging all members to stay engaged with the Valley Shore YMCA. We will of course honor and respect all requests to hold memberships. We are encouraging everyone to utilize our online system here.
How do I make a complaint or give feedback about service?
You can ask to speak to the Executive Director or any Director team member at the Valley Shore YMCA.
How can I get updates about the reopening of amenities and programs?
Check our website often for updates, and follow us on Facebook. We’ll also continue to send updates through email.
How much longer do I have to wear this mask?
In order for us to be open, we need to certify that we are following all of the DECD’s guidelines for each particuar phase. We will align and update our operations with each successive phase.
What if I show up and don’t have an appointment?
We ask that all members use our online reservation system, or call in if they cannot access it to ensure that there is space. If a member is unaware of the new procedure, we will be happy to explain the process and allow the member in if there is space available. After that point, we expect all members to follow this procedure to ensure our staff can appropriately manage their responsibilities.