By Debbie Adams
The Lancerlot Sports Complex “closed temporarily” on March 18 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It “partially reopened” on June 10 in compliance with Phase II directives from the Virginia Department of Health and Governor Ralph Northam.
The time in between was spent disinfecting, cleaning, and completing quite a few projects within The Lot, including installing new LED lighting in the cardio room, spin room, Nautilus room, and racquetball courts, painting the entire second floor, installing new equipment on all Nautilus equipment, painting lines in the parking lot, and starting the process of a massive makeover of the indoor pool area.
When the facility reopened in Phase II on June 10 with a celebratory “Yes! We’re Opening” Facebook announcement, it was with reduced hours for both the Health and Fitness areas and the ice rink and with many safety precautions in place.
Members, guests, and employees were greeted at the door by health screeners and questioned about the status of their own health (fever, cough, shortness of breath, chills, sore throat), recent travel and their contact with anyone who tested positive for the coronavirus.
Management requested that members socially distance at all times and wear face coverings before and after exercising. Hand sanitizers were placed throughout the complex. Water fountains were closed; members were asked to bring their own containers of water. Seating areas were marked with X’s to maximize social distancing. Exit points were marked to alleviate bottlenecking.
Locker room use was limited to bathrooms; no showers were allowed. “Congregating” before or after activity was discouraged. Those using exercise equipment were asked to disinfect the equipment after each use.
Child Watch, the outdoor swimming pool, dry saunas, the Banquet Room, the Coffee Lounge, day and guest passes, birthday parties, public ice skating, and swim lessons were all closed in Phase II.
Once the indoor pool makeover was complete, it reopened in Phase II for lap swimming, diving, exercise, and instruction. Lap swimming was restricted to three persons per lane with 10 feet of physical distance per swimmer; diving areas were limited to three persons, also. Swimming classes were limited in the number of participants to allow for 10 feet of distance at all times. Water aerobics classes, including Aqua Zumba, Hydro, and Deep Water, resumed on June 15.
There were limitations on cardio and weight room equipment which was spaced out for social distancing. Yoga, spin, and aerobics classes were limited in the number of participants. Time was provided between classes for disinfecting.
In the ice rink, bleachers, benches, and changing areas were marked with X’s for 10 feet of social distancing. There was no public skating. Stick and puck sessions were limited to 20 participants.
Figure skating, stick and puck, clinics, camps, and practices were allowed with 45-minute breaks between sessions for disinfecting. No game play events were permitted. Drills could be practiced, but contact was limited. Participants were asked to dress at home.
When Virginia entered Phase III on July 1, the Lancerlot was able to loosen restrictions somewhat. Swim classes are now allowed indoors with social distancing, along with free swim.
The outdoor pool was able to re-open on July 6 with limited hours from 10-2 and 3-7 with time in between for cleaning. Only members are allowed to use the pool this summer (18 at a time and four babies in the baby pool), unlike past years when day and guest passes were sold during the summer months. Chaise lounges on the outdoor deck are spaced 10 feet apart to maintain social distancing requirements.
Exercise and weight equipment in Health and Fitness areas are still appropriately spaced out 10 feet apart. Exercise class sizes are limited with disinfecting between sessions.
Ice rink restrictions remain in place. Freestyles, instructor ice, and stick and pucks are scheduled. Youth and adult drop-ins, Rookie League, and private rentals became available in early July.
Current hours are still reduced from the past: Health and Fitness areas are open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.; the ice rink is open from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.
General Manager Joe Miller says activity is gradually picking up at the Lancerlot. Members are returning to exercise and participate in classes. The ice rink is a welcome relief from the soaring temperatures outside. He has emphasized throughout that if patrons follow the health guidelines, things can get back to normal faster.
CORA Physical Therapy, located on the second floor of the Lancerlot Complex, never did close due to the coronavirus. Many clients and potential clients just assumed they were closed because the Lancerlot was.
CORA Physical Therapy operates over 200 clinics in nine states with a range of services for adults and pediatrics. It provides physical and occupational therapy for adults, and PT, OT, and speech therapy for pediatrics.
Clinic Manager and Physical Therapy Assistant Trevor Campbell says that the Vinton clinic was the busiest of all the CORA PT locations in Virginia with close to 300 visits per week—until COVID-19 struck five months ago. The clinic had finished renovating the office in January and planned for a grand re-opening celebration in May (postponed until a later date).
The Vinton location was one of the hardest hit–possibly because the Lancerlot was temporarily closed by the pandemic and a result, potential clients didn’t realize CORA Physical Therapy was open, offering services both inside the clinic and through telehealth.
CORA made a great effort to publicize its services still being available. In mid-June, Campbell was able to bring back two full-time therapists.
CORA patients and their loved ones are kept safe and protected at all times with pre-screens as well as entrances with pick-up and drop-off options, following CDC guidelines, taking patients’ temperatures when they enter the clinic and insuring patient safety with proper cleaning supplies.
Employees are working diligently to ensure everyone is following existing protocols for handwashing and disinfecting and sanitizing equipment, treatment tables, waiting areas, bathrooms, doorknobs, and other general areas.
All employees are screened for COVID-19 daily. Those presenting any level of symptoms return home and follow up with their physician before returning to work.
All patients are screened upon arrival of their appointment time to make sure no symptoms are being exhibited. Those presenting COVID-19 symptoms are advised to return home and contact their physician.
“We are doing everything possible to keep people healthy, and still allow of patients to get the therapy they need,” said Campbell.
Office hours are Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
More information is available by calling CORA Physical Therapy at 343-0466 or check online at https://www.coraphysicaltherapy.com/vinton-virginia/.