For the 2020-2021 school year, Merrimack College took many precautions to allow the students to return to campus. The campus fitness center was open to students but with enhanced safety protocols to mitigate risks in an environment in which people are typically touching shared equipment and are within close contact with one another. Among the protocols was the requirement to stay six feet apart from one another. Due to the small size of the fitness studios, capacity had to be limited to follow the social distancing protocol. The above sign comes from the smaller of the two studios.
Capacity limits and signs were just a small portion of the overall efforts to keep the fitness center open. The center itself had a capacity limit for the same reason the studio had. If a person wanted work out there, they would have to sign up for a time on the fitness center’s website. The time slots were 50 minutes during the day and 90 minutes after 10pm. After signing up for a time slot, students had to report a negative weekly COVID test. Through the “CoVerified” app, a student would have to show one of the workers at the desk that they were cleared for use of the facilities. In between every time slot, fitness center employees would have to wipe down all of the equipment with sanitizer just in case the last person using the equipment did not. Similar protocols were enacted throughout the campus to keep different places open during the pandemic to help ensure safety while allowing students something of a normal college experience.
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