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Reopening with care!

Our reopening plan is focused on both safety and member experience. Many of your favorite activities and amenities are available in complete compliance with the Governor’s Reopening Task Force, CDC, and local health.

How did you make decisions about your safety protocols?

With guidance from health officials, government leaders, Y-USA the Northwest CT 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.

What does Phase 2.1b mean for the YMCA?

At this time, the Phase 2.1b guidelines require masks to be worn during all activities at the YMCA, except showering and swimming. This is a change from Phase 2, when maintaining a minimum distance of 12 feet allowed for class/equipment usage without a mask. Additionally, lap swimming is limited to one person per lane, unless the second person is from the same household. There is a maximum of two people from the same household allowed per lane.

Reservations Required

Due to social distancing requirements, we don’t want anyone to be turned away from the Y so we are utilizing an online reservation system to be able to schedule time for the  Group Exercise classes, Basketball Hoops and the Pool. You can reserve spaces up to 1 week in advance. Reservations can also be made on our NEW Mobile app! Find it on the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.

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.

Mask Requirements


  • -Entering/exiting the building starting at the outdoor steps
  • -All common areas
  • -Before and after activities where you can remove your mask
  • -Strength and Cardio Rooms
  • -Masks must be worn over mouth and nose
  • -While exercising on cardio equipment
  • -Participating in Group Exercise Classes when on designated social distancing spot.


  • -You must wear your mask to and from your lap lane.
  • -Please wear your mask once you leave the shower.

General Facility

  • -We will align and update our operations with each successive phase of the Governor’s Reopening Task Force.
  • -Signs are clearly displayed at the front doors asking you to stay home if you have signs of respiratory Illness. If you have signs of COVID-19 you may not enter the facility.
  • -Members and Staff will have their temperature checked and sanitize their hands before moving past the Member Services Desk.
  • -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.
  • -All members and staff are to check-in during each visit.
  • -Be prepared for our new check-in process and safety protocols. We want to make sure everyone has a safe, fun and positive experience at the Y. Everyone has a role. Please keep our safety precautions top of mind.
  • -Members must bring and wear their own mask in the facility.
  • -Members must maintain a 6-foot distance from other members and staff where possible.
  • -Per State of CT, 50% building capacity limits are in effect. At this time, members must make reservations through on our online reservation system to participate in lap swimming, group exercise classes, personal training and to reserve Basketball Hoops in the gym. Please arrive no earlier than 10 minutes before your reserved time. You may be asked to wait if your space is not available until your designated time. All members must check-in at the membership services desk. We ask that all members leave directly after completing their workout or using the showers and not congregate in the building.
  • -All payment transactions will be cash-less. A credit card machine will be available and Members must swipe their own card.
  • -Nationwide members, guests and youth under 13 are not permitted in the Y for our Phase 2.
  • -Bring your own water. Bottle filling stations only are permitted.
  • -At this time, only active members will be allowed access to the Northwest CT 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.
  • -If you would like to give feedback about service please ask to speak with the CEO or any Director at the Northwest CT YMCA.

Locker Rooms

  • -Open for bathroom use and/or quick change.
  • -Showers are available. Members should spray their shower before and after each use and take no longer than ten minutes so they can be ready for reservations that start at the top of the hour. Please wear your mask once you leave the shower.
  • -50% occupancy level in the locker room is in effect, so kindly avoid lingering and congregating.
  • -Whenever possible wear your workout gear to the facility to reduce locker room usage.
  • -While this is not a Covid-19 specific rule, please remember cell phone usage is not allowed in the locker room.
  • -Saunas are not available at this time.

Fitness Rooms

  • -Members must maintain a 6-foot distance from other members and staff where possible.
  • -Masks must be worn in the strength and cardio rooms during this phase.
  • -Members must wipe down their equipment with spray provided before and after each use.
  • -Staff will be regularly disinfecting high touch areas in our facility.

Group Fitness

  • -Small Group Exercise classes will be available and must be booked online.
  • -Virtual Classes will continue to be available.
  • -Please bring your own yoga mat for yoga and any traditional classes requiring a mat. Bring yoga blocks, if needed, to all yoga classes.
  • -Bring your own water bottle.
  • -Please arrive on time to ensure social distancing.
  • -Place belongings on designated spaces and clean spot after use.


  • -Swimmers must preregister for a Lap Lane through our online reservation system or our Mobile App
  • -Please wear your mask to and from the lap lane.
  • -When possible, swimmers are encouraged to shower before coming to the YMCA.
  • -Members may reserve one lane per day for up to 45 minutes.
  • -Please arrive only 10 minutes before your appointment time.
  • -Bring your own kickboards and pull buoys. Shared equipment is not available.
  • -Lap swimming is limited to one person per lane, unless the second person is from the same household. There is a maximum of two people from the same household allowed per lane.


See a full list of our programs on our Program Guide. At this time, the following services are unavailable:

  • -No Open Gym (i.e., Pickup Basketball or Pickleball) until social distancing requirements have been lifted.
  • -Large Group Swim Lessons Suspended (Small Group & Private Lessons are available, please call for more information: Torrington: 860-489-3133 x142, Winsted: 860-379-0708 x212, Canaan: 860-824-2790)
  • -Sauna Rooms Closed

Virtual Online Programs

The YMCA’s virtual programming will be expanded and continue. Many thanks to all of you who have participated in it and continue to enjoy it! If you have not tried it now is the time! See the Virtual Class Schedule here or check out our On-Demand Video Library of your favorite classes.

NOTE: When creating an account to make reservations online or on the app, your “barcode” is your membership ID number. Click here if you need more information!

Our Commitment to Cleanliness

We are committed to maintaining a safe and clean environment. We will

  • -Change the traffic flow around the building to make sure that there is minimal contact.
  • -Look for new signs and arrows! Staff will be cleaning high touch points and surfaces regularly.
  • -The Y is implementing new stringent cleaning and disinfecting protocols throughout all areas of Y facilities and program sites.
  • -The Y will only use products that meet the EPA’s criteria for use against the virus that causes COVID-19.
  • -Members and staff are required to wear face coverings in all common areas and strength/cardio room during this phase.
  • -Members and staff are asked to have a part in keeping our facility clean! Please wipe down your machines before and after each use.

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, 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 Northwest CT YMCA job duties. All staff will be required to clean and disinfect surfaces often. There are no exceptions.

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.

Childcare Covid-19 Policies

Click to see our updated Covid-19 Policies

Click to see our updated Mask Policy