Illinois Allows Pools to Open for Lap Swimming in Phase 3

Illinois, home to the one of the largest of USA Swimming 59 Local Swimming Committees (LSCs), has released guidelines on the reopening of pools as part of Phase 3 of the state’s return to business from the global coronavirus pandemic. The state has 5 total phases to its plan, and the state has now entered phase 3, meaning that pools are open for limited use immediately.

Specifically, as part of Phase 3, pools are limited to use in lap swimming, diving, swimming lessons, swim team practices, and for therapy pools. Water parks and bathing beaches will not be opened in Phase 3.

The state has been one of the last to announce its plan to reopen pools, which have been shut down since March.

As part of the plan, group sizes should be limited to no more than 10 people, allowing for social distancing where possible. Facilities are allowed to have multiple groups of 10 people if facilities allow for social distancing of guests and employees and if 30 feet of distancing is maintained between groups.

The reopening guidelines have no other restrictions on capacities or number of people per lane.

Other restrictions lifted in Phase 3 of the plan includes allowing manufacturing, offices, retail, barbershops, and salons to reopen to the public with capacity and other safety restrictions; gatherings of 10 or fewer people; and continued face coverings and social distancing. Outdoor shooting ranges and paintball courses are also allowed to reopen, as are golf courses with groups of up to four. Restaurants are also allowed to open for outdoor dining under Phase 3 of the plan.

Under the next phase, phase 4, schools will be able to reopen. This is a crucial next phase in the plan for swimming, as many teams are dependent on school pools for training.

Illinois is not setting specific dates for moving through its phases, but instead focusing on when each of 4 designated regions of the state meet certain metrics about the spread of coronavirus and its impact on hospitals. According to data on the state’s website, all 4 regions have hit the metrics to advance to Phase 4, which is expected to be approved in about 3 weeks if the positive trend continues.

According to data compiled by the New York Times, Illinois has seen 126,317 total cases of coronavirus infection, with 5,834 deaths caused by COVID-19. That ranks the state 4th in terms of total cases and 6th in terms of deaths. The state has seen a steady decrease in new daily cases over the last 3 weeks. The 870 new cases in the state on June 4 is the fewest since early April, even as the state has surpassed 1 million tests conducted.

The Illinois Swimming LSC had 22,271 year-round athlete members in 2018. That makes it neck-and-neck with the Southern California Swimming LSC as the largest in the country.


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About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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