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Re-Opening Safely after COVID-19

12 July 2020

Dear Members,

Following the COVID-19 lockdown, we have put considerable thought into how we can open our doors, whilst keeping the risks to both our staff and you, our members, as low as possible. This blog summarises the changes we plan to make when we re-open on 25th July. Obviously, the situation is changing quickly. If the incidence of COVID-19 continues to decline, then we hope to be able to relax some of the restrictions as we head through the rest of the summer and into Autumn. On the other hand, we will remain vigilant to any spike in cases, and take any appropriate action that is needed.

The good news is that our Club is one of the safest around. Being new, the high quality and modern air handling systems ensure large quantities of fresh air are constantly being pumped around the building. In addition, our normal cleaning regime has always been good, and we plan to enhance this further during the coming weeks and months. The measures we outline below will enable as many members as possible to use the Club throughout the day, whilst still ensuring that we can all stay suitably “socially distanced” and hence as safe as is possible.   

The changes are outlined in our video or you can read them below.

We will start with some general points before moving onto the gym and our group exercise classes:

When Visiting the Club:

  • Please remember your membership card. If you do not, you may have to wait to enter until we have let in those that have their cards. Only one barrier will be in operation and we want to ensure a speedy entry to avoid crowding at the entrance.
  • We will be using the main entrance to enter the Club and exiting through the Club Lounge doors. Please follow the signs and do not try to exit out of the front doors.
  • Hand sanitiser will be provided at the front door – please use this before you enter.
  • Staff will be wearing masks as they move around the Club, for both your protection and their own. To respect others, we would kindly ask you to wear a mask as well when moving around the Club, although we do not expect you to wear a mask when exercising. Wearing a mask whilst moving around helps to protect others, as well as yourself.
  • Please come changed and ready to exercise and leave your bags in the car if possible. We wish to keep locker room use to a minimum, and we anticipate main use will be by members using the pool and spa.
  • In the locker rooms, the hand dryers and hair dryers have been disabled. Please use the paper towels provided to dry your hands.
  • Please follow the floor signs when moving around the Club. When using the stairs please stay on the left.
  • Note that we are not taking cash payments, so please bring your card/phone.
  • Please bring water with you to the Club. Our water fountains will remain in use to fill bottles, but we would like to keep their use to a minimum.  

Gym

Updated 22nd July

The most important point to note is that you will need to book a timeslot in the gym, in the same way as you would currently book a class or a court. Time slots will start quarter past the hour from 6am, and will run for 45 minutes (e.g. 8.15am to 9am, or 7.15pm to 8pm). This will allow 15 mins of “changeover time” to allow members to clean the kit they have been using and exit the gym, and enable our staff to do some additional cleaning before the next group enters. Please note:

  • Please book your session through the App. You will be able to book up to seven, 45-minute sessions per week.
  • Numbers will be limited to 35 in each session. If you don’t have a booked slot you will not be able to use the gym.  
  • Half of the gym kit has been taken out of use, to allow adequate spacing between stations.
  • If you arrive early for your session, please wait in the car or outside and only try to enter the Club in the few minutes before your session starts. This is to avoid a queue building up on the stairs and in the lobby.
  • Please wipe down your kit, before and after use. There will be plenty of blue roll and disinfectant spray available. Our team will also be doing extra cleaning in the gym to ensure that kit remains as clean as possible.
  • Our popular parent & junior gym sessions for 12-15 year olds will run extra sessions through the summer as follows, Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, 12 – 4pm, Thursdays, 12-4pm and 8-10pm, Fridays, 12-6pm and Saturdays and Sundays, 2-6pm. Please note that BOTH the 12-15 year old and the parent will need to book a slot at the same time, and the usual close supervision rules will apply.
  • You can book your PT sessions directly with your PT as normal. These will remain 1 hour sessions and can be booked immediately. All of our PTs will wear masks during PT sessions.

Please do be courteous when using the gym and do not “hog a station” for too long. If there are others waiting for the free weights area, we are asking you limit your time to 15 minutes. Please move regularly onto different pieces of kit. 

Classes

We plan to continue to run classes, led by all of your favourite instructors, and these will be bookable in the usual way. However, to ensure social distancing we are limiting numbers to around 50% of our previous capacity – this will enable us to operate well within the guidance for space required to safely exercise. We recognise that this will make it harder to book onto classes, so we are taking the following additional steps to help improve the situation:

  • You will be restricted to booking a maximum of three group exercise classes per week and we kindly ask you to respect this limit. We will be running regular checks.
  • All members with an active (i.e. not frozen) membership will have free access to our new “Club Towers Live” streaming service for as long as we have to restrict class numbers in the Club. For details please visit www.clubtowerslive.com. You will receive further communication regarding this (including how to get your free access) nearer to our opening date. Members who stay on freeze will be able to subscribe to “Live” in the usual way.
  • We will shorten some classes to enable us to run additional ones.

When attending a class, please go upstairs and straight into the relevant studio. We will be leaving gaps between the end of one class and the start of the next, so that there will be no need to wait around outside the studio.  Other points to note:

  • Please clean your mat/kit BEFORE AND AFTER your class using the blue roll and disinfectant spray provided.
  • If you can please bring your own mat with you.
  • There are floor markers to show where to place your mat or equipment to give adequate spacing. Please follow these markings.
  • The instructor will take the roll call before each class so that you do not have to handle the pen and sheet, and to ensure that only booked participants are in the studio.
  • Some classes will be streamed live to members doing the class at home. If you do not wish to be in the video then please avoid these streamed classes or choose a place in the studio where you will not be visible.
  • Sadly, we don’t feel able to offer gym floor workouts or our Supervised junior gym classes initially, due to the sharing of kit that occurs in these classes. As we finalise our new timetable there may be one or two other classes that we do not put on straight away.
  • After the class, please clean your mat/kit and exit the studio quickly. Please do not use the equipment in the gym unless you have a gym session booked.    

Tennis

We are really looking forward to tennis starting up again at the Club. It has not been possible to take down our tennis dome due to the difficulties in doing this whilst remaining socially distanced, and travel restrictions on our suppliers. We now plan to leave it up for the whole summer.

The bad news is that on sunny days, the dome does get very warm, so please bring plenty of water. The good news is that you will still be able to play in good conditions, even when the weather outside is wet and windy. The booking system will remain unchanged.

There are just a few points to note on tennis:

  • Please don’t congregate around the entrances to the courts. If they are already in use, please wait some distance away and stay socially distanced until your start time. There are designated queuing areas outside the indoor and outdoor courts to allow this and we would ask you wait beyond the exit gate for members beside the dome if the match before has not finished.
  • No more than four players on a court please.  
  • Please replace your towel (and any other kit) in your racquet bag after use, and don’t leave it lying on the court or bench during your match. 
  • Please use the hand sanitisers after you have finished your game.
  • Please bring your own balls and racquets as we are unable to lend at the moment. Balls are available to buy.

Note that adult group coached sessions will resume, but with a strict limit of 4 players per court. Tennis social and team sessions will not be run initially.

Sadly, we are so close to the end of summer term that our junior coaching will not resume as per our normal timetable. However, we will be running some sessions for our juniors during the summer vacation and will announce details in the next couple of weeks.

Squash

Updated – 17th July 2020.

The great news is that squash players are able to get back on court, albeit with certain restrictions. The current guidance is that a normal game of squash cannot be played by players from different households (except those from a support bubble). You may however, do drills, routines, solo practice or take part in coaching – all of which can be done whilst adhering to current guidance for safe play. Our coaches will be on hand to help you get back into shape and match ready for when restrictions are lifted.

When playing squash, please can you:

  • Use the hand sanitisers provided before and after play.
  • Stay back from the doors and allow the previous court users to exit safely before trying to enter the court.
  • Keep the number of players on court to a maximum of two.
  • Not wipe your sweaty hands down the side walls or glass backs to dry them off.
  • Replace your towel (and any other kit) in your racquet bag after use, and don’t leave it lying on the court or on the benches whilst you are playing your match.
  • Please do not spectate unless you absolutely have to (e.g. to watch your junior) and stay socially-distanced at all times.   
  • Please bring your own balls and racquets as we are unable to lend at the moment. Balls are available to buy.

Note that we will be running Club nights but you must book a slot. Club nights will be run by a coach who will help coordinate safe drills and practice routines. We will run some sessions for our juniors during the summer vacation. Numbers will be limited to a maximum of two juniors per court and 5 in total in any one session.

Swimming & Spa

As for the gym, the most important point to note is that you will need to book a timeslot in the pool and spa, in the same way as you would currently book a class or a court. Time slots will start at quarter past the hour and quarter to the hour, and will last for a maximum of one hour. So for example you would be able to book a slot from 7.15am to 8.15am, or from 5.45pm to 6.45pm.

Please note:

  • Please book your session through the App. You will be able to book up to 4 sessions per week. If you don’t have a booked slot you will not be able to use the pool/spa.  
  • Parents wishing to swim with a young child will need to book their child in via Reception, as the App will not allow children to book. Both parent and child will require a booking.
  • Total numbers in the pool and spa will be limited to 12 per hour, with a maximum of 4 in the hydropool (two in seats and two in beds) at any one time. The sauna and steam room will remain closed.
  • If you arrive early for your session, please wait in the car or outside and only try to enter the Club in the few minutes before your session starts.
  • You may use the locker rooms, but please do wipe down the locker handle after use.
  • Four showers will be in use in each locker room. Please do not forget to shower before using either of the pools.  
  • Sunbeds will not be in use – either inside or outside.
  • Please bring a clean towel and hang it on the pegs provided so that you are in the locker rooms for the minimum time possible.  
  • We are likely to run some group sessions in the pool, such as aqua classes, parent & baby sessions and swimming lessons. During these activities it will not be possible to book a slot to use the pool or spa.
  • Sadly, as we are so close to the end of summer term our junior swimming lessons will not resume as per our normal timetable. However, we will run some lessons for our juniors during the summer vacation to help them to make up for the lessons they have missed. We will announce details as soon as we can.

Please do be courteous when using the pool and spa. In particular, please do not stay in the hydropool for too long to allow everyone a fair chance to use it.

Club Lounge

The Club Lounge is an important part of the social environment of the Club and we plan to open it immediately. However, the opening will be phased. Initially there will be no food service from the kitchen. We will, however, have snacks available from front of house to go with our hot and cold drinks service – including takeaway baguettes and soups. Once we can assess how the lounge is working and can ensure a smooth and safe operating environment for everyone, we plan to introduce a kitchen food service – hopefully this will not take long. 

We have removed quite a lot of seating from the indoor lounge area to enable you to remain socially distanced. All of our outdoor seating will be available and is well spaced.

Please do use the hand sanitiser provided or wash your hands thoroughly before using the Lounge.

Note that, due to social distancing and the reduced seating capacity, working in the Club Lounge will not be allowed for the foreseeable future, even in the Quiet Lounge.

Soft Play

Sadly, the soft play area will also remain out of action initially. We know how much our younger members love the soft play but we don’t feel we can open it up at this stage, especially given the caution in schools at the moment. We will, of course, keep this under review.

Creche

Our creche will also stay closed for the time being, although again we will keep this under review. The issues with schools and nurseries mean that we will need this space for the children of our staff team in the initial phase of reopening.

Guests

Initially guests will not be able to visit the Club unless they are using a voucher issued through our Premium Membership programme. We wish to assess how busy the Club is initially based on usage by members, before we enable guests to use the facilities. We will obviously keep this under review.

We hope that the above is clear and makes sense to you, and that we can welcome you back to the Club shortly in a safe and socially distanced manner. Apologies for the length of the blog, but there was a lot to communicate! If you have any questions or concerns, then we are here to help. Please send us an email to info@clubtowers.com. If you want to speak to us then please request this and we will call you back.

Many thanks and wishing you all well.

Matthew, Steve and the Club Towers Team

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