You probably already have some rules about safety and cleanliness in the dance studio — such as no outside shoes and no food or drinks — but amidst COVID-19 concerns, cleanliness is taking on a whole new meaning. Every type of facility needs to have cleaning protocols that protect everyone who comes into the building, and dance studios are no different. However, dance studios also have some special considerations for cleaning, such as how to care for the specialized dance floors.
As the threat of COVID 19 recedes it will probably never go away entirely. Therefore, it is still important to maintain a routine of cleaning and disinfecting your facility to help prevent the transmission of flu and cold viruses. Your diligence will prevent your students, parents and teachers from getting sick. You may be wondering just how often you should clean these dance floors. Other frequently touched surfaces such as ballet barres, door handles and bathroom fixtures should be cleaned and disinfected more consistently than before. Here’s everything you should know about keeping your dance studio safe and clean.
Cleaning vs. Disinfecting
Cleaning and disinfecting are similar but don’t necessarily mean the same thing, and it’s important to understand the difference between the two. Cleaning processes involve removing dirt, dust and debris from any surfaces including floors, countertops and other fixtures. These may include wiping, scrubbing, washing and rinsing actions that result in cleaner surfaces.
You should clean your studio regularly. Most studios conduct a daily or weekly mopping of floors, depending on the volume of classes and amount of dancers in the facility. For this type of routine cleaning, Stagestep recommends ProClean, our industrial-strength detergent degreaser that’s safe for wooden dance floors and flooring finishes.
Disinfecting, however, is a specific process that destroys or inactivates both bacteria and viruses on hard, nonporous surfaces. This is one of the only ways to stop or slow the spread of germs that easily transmit from people touching surfaces. Disinfectants even go beyond the capabilities of sanitizers, which only reduce the amount of bacteria — disinfectants kill all bacteria and viruses.
This is why disinfection is so important for various facilities, especially right now. For disinfecting, Stagestep recommends ProClean D No-Rinse, our exclusive disinfectant cleaner.
How Often Should You Clean Your Studio?
One of the biggest questions any dance studio owner faces is how often to clean the studio. Many dance studios see numerous people coming and going every day — from the dancers and instructors to parents and other visitors. Just as with any other business or service, people expect the facilities to be clean and safe for all.
You want to protect your dance family when they come into the studio, so regular cleaning is absolutely necessary. How often you should perform these cleaning routines can depend on a few different factors.
No matter how much traffic your studio sees each day, there are some basic cleaning duties you should carry out daily. This list includes but is not limited to:
- Sweeping all floors in dance rooms, hallways and other areas.
- Emptying all trash and recycling bins.
- Wiping down all barres and any other equipment.
- Cleaning bathrooms.
Under normal circumstances, you can perform certain duties related to deep cleaning less often, such as cleaning all mirrors, doing more intensive bathroom cleaning or mopping and steam cleaning the flooring. However, during the current times with COVID-19 concerns, you should alter and intensify some of your cleaning and disinfecting routines.
Cleaning Frequency During the Pandemic
You should keep a close eye on local COVID-19 infection rates as well as any guidance from local authorities and let it inform your cleaning routines. If COVID-19 infection rates are increasing in your community, you should clean and disinfect even more often to help slow down the rate and protect your clients, employees and guests. Concerning CDC guidelines for dance studios, follow their recommendations for cleaning and disinfecting facilities.
The CDC recommends developing a plan for which surfaces need cleaning, which methods you’ll use and how frequently you’ll carry out each cleaning task. You should also ensure you use approved disinfectants for proper protection. This plan can help you create specific routines to follow each day or week, and you can easily adjust them if needed for more deep cleaning or additional disinfecting.
Account for the sizes of the dance classes at your studio. You can also consider how many people are coming and going each day or even each hour. The higher the volume of people you have coming through your facility — and the higher the local infection rates — the more you should be cleaning and disinfecting. If you have several classes each day with many people entering the building, it may be best to disinfect between each class rather than only once per day.
What Products Should You Use for Your Studio?
When you’re cleaning and disinfecting the dance studio, you want to protect your dancers and families, but you also want to protect your floors and other surfaces too. Some products may not be as effective at cleaning, while others may be too harsh and can damage surfaces, so you want to choose the right cleaning products. Dance studio flooring is different from most household flooring and requires special cleaners.
Specialized cleaning products for dance studios are formulated for the materials that make up dance floors, and these cleaners will protect the flooring while keeping it clean. The ProClean family of products is specially designed for dance studios and their particular flooring materials; however, ProClean is the perfect multi-purpose solution for other surfaces in your studio as well. These floor detergents will effectively clean floors and surfaces and not harm them.
What Not to Use to Clean Your Studio
It’s also important to know what not to use on your studio floors and other surfaces. Certain substances can be damaging to these surfaces and should never be used:
- The three A’s: Alcohol, ammonia and acetone are all found in many cleaning products but should never be used on dance floors because they destroy the plasticizer in the flooring and make it less pliable.
- Bleach: Cleaning products containing bleach are also quite harmful to dance floors and are best avoided.
- Vinegar: If you clean with vinegar, it will gradually eat away at the surface of the flooring.
- Household cleaners: Some household cleaners may not be strong enough for industrial use, and others include oils that can make dance floors slippery.
- Cola: It sounds strange, but people often give recommendations for mopping dance floors with Coke to reduce slipping while dancing. Avoid following this advice — the sugars in the Cola attract pests and make dust stick to the floors. Ultimately, Cola is simply not good for the flooring finishes.
How Effective Is Your Disinfectant?
You want to make sure the products you use to clean and disinfect are working effectively in your dance studio. How effective is your disinfectant or cleaning solution? It’s important to note that most cleaning solutions do not disinfect. By the same token, most disinfectants do not clean, so you want a cleanup routine that includes both to cover all your bases.
Each disinfectant product has a “kill time,” which is usually labeled on the package. This refers to the amount of time a surface should remain wet with the product to kill all bacteria and viruses. The kill time is often much longer than you’d expect. For it to be completely effective, you need to make sure the surface stays visibly wet for the entire recommended time.
While disinfectants help prevent the spread of germs and disease, many of these substances can be harmful if improperly handled. It’s important to always follow the product’s safety guidelines regarding usage and storage. Some of these chemicals can be flammable or explosive, so store excess cleaning product in a safe location away from any flames or heat sources. Staff members using the disinfectants should also protect themselves with gloves and wash their hands after using the product. Ensure these chemicals are not ingested or spilled onto anyone’s skin.
What Surfaces Should You Clean and How Often?
Keeping everything clean and disinfected in the middle of a pandemic can be a little overwhelming for any type of business. Keeping up with the latest dance studio COVID guidelines and knowing what to clean and how often to do it can be a chore in itself. However, it doesn’t have to be complicated. Every studio is different, but here are the most important basic surfaces to clean for dance studios:
- Flooring: A dance studio’s floors are crucial to the facility’s purpose, and they must receive proper care regularly. This is essential for keeping things clean but also for protecting dancers from slipping and falling, ensuring they have the right grip and feel of the floor when dancing. You should clean your dance flooring at least daily with a specialized dance floor cleaner. You might increase the frequency of your cleaning routine for higher-volume studios. Floors should be swept first, and then mopped with specialized detergent.
- Mirrors: While they receive frequent use, the mirrors in a dance studio aren’t touched as often. Daily cleanings of mirrors may not be necessary, but a good weekly cleaning is recommended. You can adjust this schedule according to how often the mirrors start looking dirty. Clean with vinegar or window solution and a squeegee.
- Barres: Used in many types of dance classes, the ballet barre is often overlooked in cleaning routines. However, now that everyone is hyperaware of germ transmission and the surfaces we touch, this is an important surface to clean for any dance studio. If there are multiple classes in a day and each uses the barres, you should wipe the barres with a disinfectant such as ProClean between each class to prevent the spread of germs. This goes for any other fixtures or fitness equipment used in a class.
- Bathrooms: If your studio includes bathrooms or dressing rooms, they also need frequent cleaning. How often you should clean them depends on your studio’s size and how often the facilities are used, but a daily cleaning and weekly deep cleaning should be an absolute minimum. If you have a higher volume of people using the bathrooms, consider wiping a disinfectant over faucet handles, doorknobs and other surfaces multiple times per day, especially during the pandemic.
- Small fixtures: This includes all doorknobs, light switches, handles or any small surfaces that people touch often. A daily wiping-down of these commonly touched surfaces with a disinfectant is necessary, and you should do this more often for higher-volume studios.
How to Clean a Wooden Dance Floor
Hardwood dance floors are very common for dance studios and are fairly easy to maintain. Wooden dance floors should be professionally finished to protect the wood from water damage associated with regular cleanings. Before a class, sweep or dry mop the floors to remove any dirt and dust. Use a wet mop and a detergent designed for wooden dance floors weekly — or more often depending on your cleaning routines and daily traffic.
How to Clean a Marley Dance Floor
Also common among dance studios is marley flooring, which is a special roll-out vinyl flooring system. As with wooden flooring, sweep and dry mop marley floors before each class to remove any dirt and dust. For how to disinfect marley dance flooring, you can wet mop the floors with a special detergent weekly — or at whatever frequency you determine is best for your facility. Always sweep and dry mop before wet mopping to protect the integrity of the flooring materials.
Disinfecting Best Practices
If you need more suggestions on how to keep your facilities safe and clean, use these tips for disinfecting dance studios for the best results:
- Pour out only what you need and use it right away: As soon as you pour disinfectant out of the container, it starts deteriorating and losing its effectiveness. Only pour out what you’ll reasonably use and keep the rest sealed and stored properly. You have roughly one hour to use what you’ve poured into your bucket before it becomes ineffective. If you have a larger facility with several rooms, another good rule of thumb is to use your bucket of cleaning solution for a maximum of three rooms. After that, prepare a fresh bucket of solution.
- Create a routine that includes cleaning and disinfecting: It’s important to both clean and disinfect surfaces to get the safest and most effective results. Always clean first before disinfecting. Bacteria and viruses thrive on dirty surfaces.
- Choose the right cleaning solution: Don’t use home cleaning supplies. Use industrial strength cleaners within your facility. For the floors, use solutions designed especially for the specialized qualities of dance flooring to avoid damaging the surfaces.
Protect Your Dance Studio With Stagestep
Your dance studio flooring is an investment worth protecting. You also want to do everything possible to protect your dancers, staff and visitors, too! A regular cleaning and disinfecting routine using the highest-quality dance studio cleaners is essential for facility maintenance and public health.
For more than 45 years, Stagestep has been your go-to supplier for dance studio flooring and maintenance supplies. The ProClean family of cleaning supplies from Stagestep is specially formulated for dance floors and will keep your flooring and your dancers safe from bacteria and viruses. Shop with us today online, or contact our friendly staff with any questions you may have.