COVID-19 Response

The health and safety of our students, members, and staff is our top priority. Below you will find our current facility policies, available activities, and frequently asked questions.

Disease does not discriminate. COVID-19 is not specific to an ethnicity or race. Racist behaviors or stereotyping are not tolerated at UW–Madison. If you experience harassment or discrimination, students are encouraged to file a bias incident report. Employees may file a complaint with the Office of Compliance.

Facilities

The Nicholas Recreation Center (Nick), Shell, and Nielsen Tennis Stadium (NTS) are open to UW-Madison students and Rec Well members who are current UW-Madison faculty and staff. Facility occupancy is limited to 25% and masks must be worn at all times. Reservations are required at the Shell and NTS.

Starting February 10, all students and members must present the Badger Badge at our facilities. Per campus protocols, your badge must be in green “building access granted” status for you to enter. Learn more about the Badger Badge here.

View LOCATIONS & Hours

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Nicholas Recreation Center

The Nicholas Recreation Center is open. Reservations are not available; entrance is on a first-come, first-served basis.

Building capacity is limited to 25% and those waiting in line must physically distance. Upon entry and exit, you will scan your Wiscard or Rec Well ID at the turnstiles. To do so, waive your card above the turnstile and wait for the gates to open. This is a contactless process; you do not need to touch the turnstile or gates.

View hours of operation

We’ve made the following modifications at the Nicholas Recreation Center:

  • Marked off cardio equipment to allow for physical distancing
  • Added floor markings to indicate boxes for weight lifting
  • Added plexi glass barriers at Member Services desks
  • Added hand sanitizer stations throughout
  • Increased number of sanitation stations to clean equipment
  • Established single entry and exit routes
  • Added signage throughout the facility
  • Not accepting cash payments at this time

Soderholm Family Aquatic Center

The Soderholm Family Aquatic Center at the Nicholas Recreation Center is open. Reservations are required.

Make a reservation for the pool

How to make a reservation:

  1. Click here.
  2. Click the pool image for Nick Pool Lap Swim Reservation.
  3. Sign in with your Net ID or Guest Login. (Note: You may need to select the pool image again after logging in.)
  4. Select the day you wish to reserve.
  5. Find a time you wish to reserve; click Book Now.
  6. You will receive a confirmation of your booked reservation time.

Please email hello@recwell.wisc.edu to cancel your pool reservation if you cannot attend so another swimmer can reserve in your place.

Member expectations:

  • To check in at the time of your reservation, enter at the Soderholm Family Aquatic Center entrance (not the main entrance) at the northeast corner of the building, near the intersection of Dayton Street and Lake Street
  • You must wear a mask to the edge of the pool; prior to entering the water, it can be put in a plastic bag or container
  • Capacity is limited to two swimmers per lane; enter the pool on the side opposite your lane partner and only take breaks on your designated side
  • Maintain at least six feet of distance from others on the pool deck and avoid congregating
  • Locker rooms are available; masks are required in the locker rooms except when showering (view locker pricing here)
    • An individual restroom is available on the pool deck and can be accessed by going through the doors to the pool
  • Please exit the building the same way you entered; if you wish to use the Nick for other activities, you will need to enter at the main entrance for capacity tracking

Shell Track, Cardio, & Weights

Reservations at the Shell (track, cardio machines, weight equipment) are available in 70-minute appointments, followed by 20 minutes of cleaning.

Please bring your Wiscard or Rec Well ID for entry. You may check in 15 minutes before your reservation time slot begins, however, you will need to wait to use equipment until it has been cleaned and your reservation has begun. Upon entering the facility, you will check in with a staff member to confirm your reservation.

You must check in within 30 minutes after your reservation start time or you will forfeit your reservation. After 30 minutes, we’ll open up your reservation to walk-ins.

Make a reservation at the Shell

How to make a reservation:

  1. Click here.
  2. Click the image for Shell Facility Access Reservation.
  3. Sign in with your Net ID or Guest Login. (Note: You may need to select the Shell image again after logging in.)
  4. Select the day you wish to reserve.
  5. Find a time you wish to reserve; click Book Now.
  6. You will receive a confirmation of your booked reservation time.

Please email hello@recwell.wisc.edu to cancel your reservation if you cannot attend.

We’ve made the following modifications at the Shell:

  • Spaced out cardio equipment into rows on basketball courts; 10 feet of separation between equipment
  • Added floor markings to indicate boxes for circuit work on basketball courts
  • Moved weight equipment and modified layouts to allow for physically distanced workouts
  • Added plexi glass barriers at Member Services desks
  • Added hand sanitizer stations at the front entrance
  • Increased number of sanitation stations to clean equipment
  • Removed benches in common areas
  • Added floor markings to encourage physical distancing
  • Established single entry and exit routes
  • Added signage throughout the facility
  • Not accepting cash payments at this time

Shell Ice Rink

The Shell ice rink is a COVID-19 testing center to support campus’ expanded health and safety plans for 2021. Unfortunately, we will not be offering any ice programs during the spring semester.

The track side of the Shell will remain open. We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for your patience and understanding as we navigate these new measures.

Nielsen Tennis Stadium

Reservations at Nielsen Tennis Stadium are 75 minutes. Please call Nielsen Tennis Stadium at (608) 262-0410 to make a reservation.

We’ve made the following modifications at Nielsen Tennis Stadium:

  • Not accepting cash payments at this time
  • Blocked off all fitness equipment
  • Added hand sanitizer stations at the front entrance
  • Added plexi glass barriers at Member Services desks
  • Added floor markings to encourage physical distancing
  • Added signage throughout the facility
  • Ball machine rental and racquet rental services now available

Outdoor spaces

The Near West Fields are closed for the winter. Near East, Cole Recreation Area, and University Bay Fields remain open.

Please remember to play it safe:

  • Only play with members of your immediate household
  • Stay home if you are feeling sick
  • Wear a face covering when you can’t maintain at least six feet of physical distancing
  • Use hand sanitizer and avoid high-touch surfaces

Cleaning & Sanitation

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What to expect from us

We will…

  • Clean equipment between each reservation slot using cleaning and disinfecting solutions
  • Clean high-touch services regularly with cleaning and disinfecting solutions
  • Regularly disinfect cleaning bottles and sanitation stations
  • Wear gloves while cleaning and disinfecting the facility and handling laundry
  • Wear masks at all times

What we expect from you

You will…

  • Clean equipment between each use with provided cleaning solution and a single-use towel
  • Utilize sanitation stations and hand sanitizer throughout the facility
  • Wear a mask at all times
  • Stay home if you’re feeling sick
  • Make a reservation to utilize our facilities and adhere to time limits
  • Avoid gathering in common areas
  • Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer upon entering facilities and throughout your visit
  • Maintain 6 feet of distance from others at all times in the facility and 10 feet when exercising
  • Follow all cleaning protocols
  • Leave extra items like bags, clothes, etc. outside the facility
  • Bring a water bottle, as drinking directly from the water fountains will be prohibited; you will be able to fill up your water bottle using the drinking fountain

What we're using to clean

During the day, we clean the facility with: 

  • Disinfecting solutions: Virex, TBQuat
  • Cleaning solutions: EnvirOx

Every night, we clean the facility with: 

  • Clorox 360 electrostatic sprayer

Activities & Services

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Available activities

  • Cardio equipment
  • Track
  • Weight lifting (spotting currently unavailable)
  • Circuit work
  • Stretching
  • Tennis (singles & doubles)
  • In-person individual personal training
  • In-person group and private swim and tennis lessons
  • In-person group fitness classes (pre-registration required)
  • Open rec basketball, pickleball, and badminton (one person per half court; pre-registration required)
  • Tennis ball machine and racquet rental services at Nielsen Tennis Stadium

Please note we continue to offer a number of virtual programs.

Locker rooms & showers

Locker rooms and showers are now open at all facilities. 

  • You can purchase a locker rental at the Member Services desk at the facility you’d like to rent from.
  • Day use lockers in locker rooms are available for use.
  • Physical distancing required at all times.
  • Showers will be available; some may be placed out of order to maintain social distancing in our bay showers at the Shell and Nielsen Tennis Stadium.
  • Masks are required at all times except when showering.
  • Current locker holders at the Shell and Nielsen Tennis Stadium will have their locker end dates extended by the number of days lockers have been unavailable since we closed in March.

See locker pricing

Temporarily on pause

  • Towel service
  • Equipment check-out (Shell)
  • Guest passes
  • Cash purchases
  • Due to campus’ updated health and safety program, only current UW-Madison students, faculty, and staff are able to enter our facilities. Therefore, memberships and membership sales for all other member types (Retired/Emeritus, UW Hospital, Alumni, Household Adults, Dependents, Community) are currently on pause. We expect that campus will reevaluate this policy in early March and will post updates as we have them. Please reach out to us at hello@recwell.wisc.edu with any questions.

Memberships

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Current members

Non-recurring memberships (you paid for a 1, 4, or 12-month membership) active during COVID-19 closures were automatically extended for the amount of days Rec Well facilities were closed.

Recurring monthly memberships were not charged between April and August 2020 and resumed in September 2020. These memberships were not charged in January 2021 and resumed in February 2021. This membership will continue monthly until you cancel your membership. If you would like to cancel your membership, please see the Cancellations & Refunds section below for details.

Upgrading your membership

All-Access memberships are required to access the Nicholas Recreation Center (Nick). This membership provides you access to the Nick, Shell, and Nielsen Tennis Stadium. Classic memberships will continue to provide access to the Shell and Nielsen Tennis Stadium. If you’re interested in upgrading your membership from Classic to the All-Access membership, please follow these steps:

  1. Enroll in the All-Access membership online or in-person at a Rec Well Member Services office (this will include a charge of the remainder of the current month).
  2. Fill out this form to receive a prorated refund for the remainder of your Classic membership. Your refund will be calculated from the date of enrollment in the All-Access membership. No refunds will be provided for prorated refund amounts under $5. A confirmation of refund will be emailed within 3 business days. Please allow 7-10 business days for your refund to show on your account.

Things to remember:

  • All-Access memberships will be charged monthly to your credit card. You are required to pay one automatic billing after initial enrollment before you can cancel.
  • Upgrade in-person or email us before purchasing if you have any questions.

Cancellations & refunds

As of October 1, no refunds will be given for past or future closures related to COVID. If we have any future closures related to COVID, we will continue to extend your membership for the days we are closed.

If you have a recurring monthly membership and would like to cancel your membership, please complete this form. For more information on cancellation polices, please visit this page on our website or email hello@recwell.wisc.edu with any questions.

New members

New members can purchase recurring monthly memberships when we reopen. Long-term memberships (4 and 12 months) are unavailable for purchase in order to allow for more flexibility. 

We have Classic and All-Access (includes access to the Nicholas Recreation Center) membership options. Please see our Memberships page for more information.

Why can’t I purchase a long-term membership? We temporarily suspended our 4-month and 12-month memberships to allow for simplicity and ease during these uncertain times. In the case that we may have to pause, stop, or restart memberships again in the future, monthly recurring memberships are more flexible for members. Once we have reached a more stable situation on campus, we anticipate that those membership options will be available.

Lockers

Locker rooms and showers are now available at all facilities. 

  • You can purchase a locker rental at the Member Services desk in each facility
  • Day use lockers in locker rooms are available for use
  • Physical distancing required at all times
  • Showers will be available; some may be placed out of order to maintain social distancing in our bay showers at the Shell and Nielsen Tennis Stadium
  • Masks are required at all times except when showering
  • Locker rental end dates at the Shell and Nielsen Tennis Stadium were extended by the number of days lockers were unavailable due to COVID related closures

See locker pricing

Towel service

Towel service is currently unavailable at all facilities.

FAQ

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Can I submit a refund request?

As of October 1, no refunds will be given for past or future closures related to COVID. If we have any future closures related to COVID, we will continue to extend your membership for the days we are closed.

What solutions are used to clean the facility?

We use a combination of disinfecting and cleaning solutions to sanitize the facilities. All solutions are approved by the EPA for use against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. During the day, we disinfect with Virex and TBQuat and clean with EnvirOx. Each night, we use Clorox360, an electrostatic sprayer.

Who should I contact if I need an accommodation?

UW-Madison and Public Health Madison and Dane County currently have a requirement that individuals wear a face covering indoors. We are happy to work with members on accommodations in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. If you need an accommodation to attend a program or use our facilities, please contact Abby Van Note at (608) 262-0297 or accommodations@recwell.wisc.edu.