Frequently Asked Questions

Below are responses to common questions. If you can't find what you're looking for, please contact your local centre for help.

What is the new system?

The Government has announced a new COVID-19 Protection Framework which will come into effect upon Government advice. It will adopt a 3-level "traffic-light" approach to managing COVID-19 and involve the use of vaccine certificates.

Will YMCA centres require its members to be vaccinated against COVID-19?

Yes, so we can operate optimally at all levels of the COVID-19 Protection Framework. All YMCA North centres will be implementing a vaccination certificate entry requirement.

From December 3 2021, we will require proof of vaccination in order to enter our centres.

Please note: we are waiting for government clarity on requirements for people aged 12-18. Once we have more information about this, we will update you. Thank you for your understanding.

What about children 12 and over?

Everyone over 12 years and 3 months will need to present a valid vaccine pass in order to enter a YMCA centre. This is line with the COVID Protection Framework under red and orange.

Do I have to scan my vaccination pass every time I come to the centre?

Yes. Due to the variety of reasons you could be visiting our centre (such as a parent bringing their child to swim school, or gymnastics, or out of school care), and our range of systems, it's quicker for you to simply scan your vaccine pass each time to gain entry into our centre.

What if I have an exemption to being vaccinated?

Those who have had an exemption approved by the government will pass the COVID vaccination scanning validation at entry. You may wish to take additional precautions within our centre.

Unless you are able to pass the COVID vaccination scanning validation at entry (either due to not being double vaccinated or not having an NZ government-approved exemption), you will not be able to enter our centres.

How will YMCA North record that I am vaccinated against COVID-19?

Scanning your vaccination pass will not record any information with us about your vaccination status

What information will YMCA North hold about my vaccination record?

The validation of your vaccination status that happens at entry to our centres does not hold any information with us. We will not be keeping this information on file. This will mean that you will need to validate your status each time.

What does this mean for my membership agreement?

This change is in line with your existing membership agreement, under health and safety requirements, and our right to vary our policies.

What if I don’t want to be vaccinated?

If you do not wish to be vaccinated against COVID-19, we respect your choice. However, you will not be able to enter a YMCA centre without valid proof of vaccination.

What if I have paid in advance and am not fully vaccinated?

If you are unable to access the YMCA services you have signed up for because you are not fully vaccinated you have two options.

  1. You may freeze your membership or reschedule your booking.
    1. If you are on a paid in full or direct debit membership you may freeze your membership.
    2. If you have booked and paid for a service in advance you may reschedule your booking for a later date
  2. You may cancel your membership/booking.
    1. If you have paid in advance for a membership or booking we will refund you for the remaining portion of your membership relating to services you are unable to access.
    2. If you pay by direct debit you may cancel your membership effective immediately upon receipt of your cancellation form.

Does YMCA North support getting vaccinated?

Yes, we support the Government’s vaccination programme to protect yourself, your whānau and our community.

Does YMCA North require its workers to be vaccinated?

Yes. We have gone through an extensive exercise internally, assessing and understanding the risk that Delta brings to our centres, and internal consultation to introduce a policy requiring all YMCA North workers to be vaccinated. This is something that has been overwhelmingly supported - our people believe in keeping themselves and others safe.  

Where can I find out facts about the COVID-19 vaccine used in New Zealand?

There has been much discussion about COVID-19 vaccines, and here is where you can get the facts including vaccine development, safety, effectiveness and approval in New Zealand – and what to do about false and misleading information and scams.

What safety protocols and guidelines does YMCA centres follow?

We have a set of detailed protocols for safe operating which align to government requirements and health and safety.

What will the new COVID-19 Protection Framework mean for gyms?

In the Red or Orange settings, gyms that do not request proof of vaccine will NOT be able to operate. In the Green setting, gyms that do not request proof of vaccine will have capacity restrictions. 

What will the YMCA do to support everyone's safety?

Everything we can. We will put in place extensive processes and protocols to ensure your safety:

  • Physical distancing of 1 metre (at Red level only)
  • Cleaning time between each class
  • Hand sanitiser available
  • Further equipment cleaning
  • Deep cleaning regime
  • Bringing own support items (towel, drink bottle etc)
  • COVID-19 Conditions of Entry to the gym
  • COVID-19 area-specific signage
  • Staff will wear masks unless exercising

What gym etiquette does everyone have to follow?

We ask that every member takes responsibility for their personal hygiene and also respects the space of others. That means wearing a mask at all times except when exercising, washing / sanitising hands, covering coughs and sneezes, keeping 1m from the nearest person, bringing your own towel and using it, and bringing your own yoga mat / boxing gloves, and not sharing or touching anything that you don’t have to.

Will you be doing extra cleaning?

Yes, you will see more cleaning taking place during the day and at night we will continue thorough cleans throughout the centre. We will also ask that you wipe down equipment before and after use to help us keep it clean.

Will there be sanitiser available?

Yes, these are throughout the centre and at Reception. The Ministry of Health also recommends you wash your hands with soap and water often for at least 20 seconds.

Do I need to wear a mask in the centre?

When we are at red, everyone over 8 must wear a mask at all times except when exercising, so when entering the facility, changing and walking between areas and rooms. This follows protocols based on the Government’s guidelines.

Is it OK if I just use a bandana or scarf or a towel as a face covering?

No, masks and face coverings that are suitable are either reusable fabric masks or disposable non-medical masks. Here are the Ministry of Health guidelines.

I have a ‘mask exemption’, do I still need to wear a mask when not exercising?

No, but you will need to present your Mask Exemption Card or letter from your doctor at Reception, prior to entering the YMCA facility. We know that some people may be differently abled or have a health condition where they may not be able to wear a face mask safely or comfortably. Mask Exemption Cards are issued by the Disabled Persons Assembly NZ (DPA). While at the centre please carry your Mask Exemption Card with you in case you are questioned by concerned members or staff.

What about physical distancing?

At the Red level, we will be following the 1m distance rule in our centres. When it comes to group fitness studios for instance, that means you’ll have 2m2 to yourself. This means that in cycle studios there will be reduced spaces available for classes.

Are there limits on class numbers at the Red level?

Yes, there are restrictions on class numbers. Class capacity is calculated based on maintaining a 1m physical distancing to a maximum of 100 people. We recommend you arrive early to secure your spot.

Are there Gym Floor limits at the Red level?

Yes, there are restrictions on numbers. Capacity of each space is calculated based on maintaining a 1m physical distancing to a maximum of 100 people. We do not foresee this leading to a need to restrict access so long as all members respect the 1m distancing requirement. Signage will be displayed in centre and staff will ensure we are adhering to this capacity.

What about your staff?

Our staff have undergone training and will be abiding by all physical distancing, room limitation and other COVID-19 Protection Framework restrictions. You will notice our staff will be wearing masks and following distancing requirements.

Once my centre opens using the COVID-19 Protection Framework, do I need to do anything before coming to the centre?

Yes, please make sure that you are aware of what you need to bring with you (towel, drink bottle etc.) and that you are aware of opening times and class times, which may have changed from what you are used to.

You will also need to bring in your valid vaccination pass and a form of ID so that we can verify it.

How will the YMCA be doing contact tracing?

All our centres have COVID-19 QR codes displayed at entry and outside studios for members to scan in using the official NZ COVID Tracer app. This scanning is used to assist the Ministry of Health with any contact tracing. Also, we will use your check-in access to trace when you have entered the centre. We will know all fitness members who have accessed a centre on certain days and times, and who has attended our other programmes taking place in our centres and be able to trace should it be required by the Ministry of Health. 

Do I have to scan the COVID-19 QR code and my vaccination pass?

Yes - these are two different systems and are used for different purposes. We are still required to keep a record of everyone who has entered our centre, in the event that we need to support the Ministry of Health with contract tracing information.

Will my fitness membership payments restart automatically when you re-open?

When your YMCA centre reopens after a closure due to COVID or under the COVID-19 Protection Framework your membership will automatically be restarted unless you were on a general Freeze before we had the closure. Your first membership payment will be on your usual payment cycle but the amount may be different – please see below. 

How much will my first membership payment after re-opening be?

Your first payment will occur on your usual payment cycle - but the amount may differ. This is how your first payment back will calculated:

  1. The first thing we will do is credit you for the period closed that you had previously paid for (“credit”)
  2. Then, we’ll apply an amount to cover the period from re-opening through to your usual payment cycle  (“part payment”)
  3. Then your regular payment amount in advance, as per usual (“regular fee”)

A quick way to figure it out is: Your Regular Fee plus Part Payment less Credit (3 + 2 - 1). After your first membership payment you will be back to normal payments

I've paid for my fitness membership in advance, will my term be extended for the days you were closed?

Yes - this will happen automatically once we re-open.

Will the timetables be the same?

We’re making sure that our timetables can manage the flow of people to and from studios and changing rooms, and give ourselves – and you – time to wipe down and clean equipment between classes. Please refer to the centre web page for the latest timetable.

Will I need to book every class I go to?

Booking may be required depending on class capacity at your centre. Please refer to your centre’s webpage for the latest information on booking

Will I be able to get into the classes I want?  

With the Government restrictions in place you may not be able to get into every class you want to. It’ll be best arrive early to secure a spot or book in advance where this is available. It’s also the ideal time to try something new if you’re unable to do your usual workout

Are you providing stretching mats, swiss balls and rollers?

Yes, these are still available – please clean them before and after use to keep everyone safe.

Are you providing boxing gloves?

No. To minimise sharing of equipment we will not be providing boxing gloves. Please bring your own.

What about Changing Rooms?

Changing Rooms will be open, but the less you can use them the better. If you can come dressed in your gear all ready to workout it’ll mean that you’ll get in and out of the centre quicker, have less interaction with others, and won’t have to worry about limits in the changing rooms due to physical distancing. Showers at home after your workouts get the big tick! Benches will have limited people at them due to physical distancing, but washing hands is OK as long as you’re physically distant from the next person. Please respect the space of your fellow gym-goers and be kind.

When is the best time to come to the gym?

Everyone has different times they can make it in, but you might like to consider coming when it’s less busy. Check with our reception staff and they would be able to help you figure out when works best for you.

How will you let people know about the any restrictions?

Even before you enter our centres you will see COVID-19 signage. Physical distance spacing will be marked out in all studios and there will be floor markings, banners, digi-screens and poster reminders throughout the centre. Sanitisation stations will also be marked. We will also inform you via e-mail, Facebook, and on the centre webpages.

My child is over 12, do they need to be vaccinated to come in?

Yes, everyone over 12 years and 3 months will need to present a valid vaccine pass in order to enter a YMCA centre under the red and orange levels. This is in line with the requirements of the COVID Protection Framework

The government guidance for public facilities does not require proof of vaccination, is the YMCA included in this?

No, everyone over 12 years and 3 months coming into a YMCA centre under red or orange will need to show a valid vaccine pass in order to enter. This is because we are a mixed-use facility, which includes a gym.

I've got a multi-site membership, can I still visit different gyms under the red traffic light?

Absolutely! The multi-site membership is designed so you can take advantage of different facilities at different locations - pools, classes, equipment - it's all still valid under the COVID protection framework. You'll need to scan your vaccine pass to enter each centre of course.

Are saunas and steam rooms open under the red traffic light?

Yes, all of our centres will be operating their facilities where possible, however, there will be capacity limits to allow for people to space out.

I have a child aged between 5 - 11, do they need to be vaccinated to enter?

No - we are not currently requiring proof of vaccination from children aged 5-11. However, anyone aged 12 and over who is accompanying them will need to show valid proof of vaccination in order to enter a YMCA centre.