DAPER reopens indoor facilities for Fall 2020

Limited in-person physical education, club sports, intramurals available

The MIT Department of Athletics, Physical Education and Recreation (DAPER) reopened its indoor facilities Sept. 8. Limited group and private physical education instruction will also occur this fall. These changes mark the beginning of the second stage of DAPER’s four-stage reopening plan.

DAPER reopened its outdoor facilities and began holding in-person outdoor fitness classes for MIT community members in July during the first stage of its reopening. DAPER will expand its group and private instruction in January (Stage Three) and remove social distancing restrictions once there is a COVID-19 vaccine (Stage Four), according to the 2020 COVID-19 Reopening DAPER Facilities and Service Operations Playbook.

The Zesiger Center, Johnson Athletic Center, Alumni Pool/Wang Fitness Center, DuPont Tennis Courts, J.B. Carr Tennis Bubble, Steinbrenner Stadium, Jack Barry Field, Sailing Pavilion, Morrison Track, and DuPont Gym reopened Sept. 8, according to the Fall 2020 Undergraduate Campus Guide

The Zesiger Center and Alumni Pool/Wang Fitness Center will be open Monday through Friday 7 a.m.–10 p.m.. The Zesiger Center will also be open from noon to 7 p.m. on weekends. (During Stage One, indoor facilities were closed, and the Zesiger Center’s outdoor facilities were open for eight hours each day.) Some facilities, including the Alumni and Zesiger pools, squash courts, and outdoor tennis courts will require advance reservations through the MIT Recreation app

DAPER is offering remote asynchronous, remote synchronous, and in-person physical education and wellness classes for students this fall. Each in-person class is limited to at most ten students, according to the PE and Wellness website. MIT Recreation will continue to offer virtual and outdoor in-person fitness classes for MIT community members. 

Club sports and intramurals are available only to undergraduate and graduate students who are invited on campus this fall. Fall varsity sports have been canceled, and all varsity and club sports travel and competition has been canceled for the fall.

Access to DAPER facilities will be limited to undergraduate students living on campus, graduate students living on and off campus, MIT employees living on campus, and the families of students and staff residing on campus. The playbook states that individuals must “hold an active MIT Recreation membership and utilize the MIT COVID Pass app prior to gaining entry” to facilities.

DAPER will track the occupancy of each facility hourly on the MIT Recreation website.

Zesiger and Wang Fitness Center equipment has been arranged so that exercise areas are spaced at least 14 feet apart as per Massachusetts state guidelines, the playbook writes. All equipment should be sanitized between uses. Hand sanitizers and disposable wipes have been placed throughout facilities. Individuals are “encouraged” to use at most one piece of DAPER facility equipment at a time to allow sanitizing and “use their own personal exercise equipment” when possible.

Restrooms in outdoor facilities will be closed this fall. Saunas and showers will also be closed, and towel service is suspended, the playbook writes.

Individuals must wear face coverings when entering facilities but may remove them in outdoors facilities while maintaining a distance of at least six feet from others.  Patrons are also responsible for observing sanitation guidelines and venue occupancy limits.

Operating hours for each facility are available at