Tysons, VA

Where and How to Decrease Stress

Laura Schwartz is a licensed Realtor in VA, D.C. and MD with McEnearney Associates in Vienna. You can follow Laura on Instagram at @LauraSchwartzRealtor or her Facebook page. Laura can be reached at 703-283-6120 or [email protected].

Happy week 2 all your home schooling parents!

I say that with the enthusiasm of someone who’s had two cups of coffee today (and it’s not even noon yet). Regardless of your child care situation right now, everyone I know is under more stress lately than ever, myself included, and I wanted to help offer up some opportunities to combat that cortisol!

Exercise

  • I did a post a few months ago about the best hidden walking trails. Still an option, especially on Monday afternoons like today where the work at home is light.
  • Outdoor fitness classes: Orange Theory, Pure Barre and Yoga just to name a few, are all doing an outdoor fitness class if you have an interest and comfort level with being outdoor.

Food

  • I read online, reducing caffeine intake helps with reducing stress. This might be one of those do as I say, not as a I do… you could try a Viva Sol smoothie, South Block smoothie or SweetLeaf smoothie (fruit, kale or sweet mix-in).
  • The total opposite of that is a decadent treat — Crumbl, Pie Gourmet, Kiln and Co, etc.

Hang Out With Friends

  • Lots of socially distanced options right now — outdoor tables at many of the eateries, wineries/breweries, apple picking, pumpkin picking — so many options.
  • Organize an outdoor “playdate” on the grass at a school or the blacktop

As the weather begins to finally (thankfully) turn to the fall, I look forward to getting back outside when my own kids are off the screens. Happy fall!

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Updated 8/10/2020 — Clarifies White started the advocacy group and how much money the GoFundMe raised.

Vienna pickleball players looking for facilities of their own in Fairfax County now have a new club and advocacy group.

Sally Unger, a new ambassador for pickleball in Fairfax County, wants to persuade county officials to further support pickleball players by providing more and better facilities. 

She has created the Vienna Pickleball Club Facebook group, which was created in June and now boasts 92 members. After the Vienna Pickleball Club formed, Unger said Helen White, the USAPA District Ambassador for Northeast Virginia and D.C., started the Fairfax County Advocates for Pickleball (FCAP).

In Fairfax County, there are zero courts dedicated to pickleball, according to Unger. Instead, players have to adapt the game to tennis courts, which Unger said makes for an inauthentic game. For example, a pickleball net is shorter than a tennis net, and both games have different court lines. 

“It’s pretty frustrating,” said Unger, who is one of the advocacy group’s members. 

FCAP is fighting for a facility pickleball players can claim as their own. 

Unger’s three goals upon becoming an ambassador were to create a pickleball club, collect data about pickleball activity in the county and to understand how funding within the county works to ask for more support. She recently sent out a survey measuring trends and demographics within the pickleball community to bring to the county. 

While pushing for official pickleball facilities, FCAP is also looking for derelict tennis courts to save and remodel for pickleball play. They are already working with the Town of Vienna to consider resurfacing Vienna’s Glyndon Court into four pickleball courts. 

According to Unger, the public reception to the club and the advocacy has been “phenomenal.” One supporter of the group created a GoFundMe to raise money for nets, locks and other court essentials. The GoFundMe raised more than $1,900 in 72 hours, Unger said. 

Unger also credits some of the sport’s popularity to the pandemic — since the game is played outside and players are relatively distant, it makes for a safe way to stay active.

“It’s a great way to meet people and build a sense of community,” said Unger. “When we’re restricted to our own yards and it’s the only outlet where I have social contact, it keeps me sane.” 

People with questions or who are interested in joining can email [email protected] or visit the Vienna Pickleball Club’s Facebook page. 

Photo by Frankie Lopez/Unsplash

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Now that Virginia is in Phase Three of rolling back restrictions, the Fairfax County Park Authority announced today that the Spring Hill Recreation Center will reopen on Monday, July 13.

The McLean center (1239 Spring Hill Road) is a part of nine recreation centers reopening in the county.

“Please keep in mind that membership gives you access to the entire RECenter system; if your RECenter isn’t one of the first opened, you can visit one that has already opened,” the Park Authority said.

Here are the centers reopening this month:

  • July 13: Spring Hill and Lee District and Oak Marr
  • July 20: Audrey Moore, Cub Run and South Run
  • July 27: George Washington, Mount Vernon and Providence

People heading to the centers can expect health screenings for COVID-19 symptoms, mandatory face coverings when not exercising, reservation requirements and time limits for visits. The Park Authority also noted that less equipment will be available for use.

More from the Park Authority:

Initially, the fitness centers and pools will reopen under timed entry restrictions for individual workouts, lap swimming and water walking. Later, drop-in exercise and other classes inside the RECenters will resume, free and plate weights will return, and racquetball and basketball courts will be available. Please consult the RECenter Operational Calendar or go to individual RECenter websites for details on the services offered at each of the RECenters.

“All openings are based on Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, state mandates, guidance from local health officials and availability of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and cleaning supplies,” the Park Authority said.

Photo by Marcus Ng on Unsplash

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People who have missed hitting the gym for the last few months are seeing options reopen.

Several gyms and yoga studios in the Tysons-area pivoted to online classes in April. Ahead of Northern Virginia starting to ease COVID-19 restrictions, some fitness center owners and clients pushed for more opportunities.

Now, fitness centers are allowed to open indoor spaces at 30% occupancy under Phase Two, which Northern Virginia entered June 12.

Fairfax County offers indoor and outdoor public swimming only for lap swimming, diving, exercise and instruction. Public pools, including community pools, are not allowed to open for recreational use.

When Virginia enters Phase Three, Gov. Ralph Northam said that pools and gyms may open at 75% capacity. The date for when Virginia will enter that phase has not been announced yet.

Just because pools and gyms can open in limited capacities doesn’t mean that they will. Some gyms, like 24 Hour Fitness in Tysons, won’t reopen at all.

We want to know how you feel about going back to the gym during the pandemic. Let us know in the poll below.

Photo by Danielle Cerullo on Unsplash

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Updated 6/22/2020 — Corrects the date for when the swimming pools reopened.

Now that Northern Virginia has entered the second reopening phase, Fairfax County is now allowing public swimming with some restrictions.

The county allowed indoor and outdoor swimming pools to open on Friday, June 12, only for lap swimming, diving, exercise and instruction.

Public pools, including ones in communities, cannot open right now for recreational use. Currently, hot tubs, spas, saunas, splash pads, spray pools and interactive features are still closed.

People who operate public aquatic venues can find a list of safety recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Some of the suggestions include disinfecting frequently touched areas, ensuring there’s proper ventilation and encouraging swimmers to social distance.

“There is no evidence that the virus that causes COVID-19 can be spread to people through the water in pools, hot tubs, or water playgrounds. Additionally, proper operation of these aquatic venues and disinfection of the water (with chlorine or bromine) should inactivate the virus,” according to the CDC.

The CDC notes that decisions for whether or how to open the facilities “should be made locally” with input from local health officials.

Fairfax County’s restrictions on public swimming include:

  • limiting pool lanes to three people spaced 10 feet apart
  • limiting diving areas to three people spaced 10 feet apart
  • limiting water classes so participants can stay 10 feet apart
  • cleaning and disinfecting shared equipment after each use

How do you feel about using public pools?

Photo by Marcus Ng on Unsplash

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Local shop owners say they are seeing a run on bicycles thanks to the coronavirus pandemic. 

With both limited public transportation and social activity, people have gravitated towards cycling as a way to get outside. As a result, local bike stores have seen a massive rise in sales. 

“Our service area is seeing an unprecedented level of demand,” said Tim Fricker, the owner of [email protected] in Vienna. But for residents seeking a quick tuneup before hitting the road, they may have to wait a little longer with Fricker reporting a turnaround time of about seven weeks. 

“The longest turnaround time I can recall in the past is a few times where we hit three weeks,” he added. “There has been nothing like this.”

[email protected] sells “conventional bicycles” in addition to specialty bikes such as recumbent bikes and trikes, folding bikes, adaptive bikes, electric bikes and trikes. While they haven’t sold out on conventional bikes, Fricker predicts that most other shops and distributors have. 

Bikenetic in Falls Church, for example, is anticipating first-time and impulse-buyers to flock to the store. Inventory for entry-level riders has yet to be replenished, though.

“All of the companies we deal with have also run out of bikes and are waiting for purchase orders to fill back in from Asia,” said Jan Feuchtner, the owner of Bikenetic.

The store is also experiencing a delayed turnaround. Feuchtner reported also being seven weeks out on repairs with about 300 bikes in the queue, which is double the number of bikes they usually have backlogged. 

To adapt to the demand, [email protected] created heavier structure and discipline to better manage workflow. Fricker said they eliminated “while you wait” services with the exception of mid-ride issues such as a flat tire.

Additionally, they tweaked certain services due to the coronavirus pandemic. No customers are permitted in the store at any time, walk-in test rides are not allowed and payment is handled over the phone.

Fricker anticipates that typical bike stores will see a steep drop in sales once the pandemic begins to die down since the market will be “saturated.” Because of the specialty of his own store, however, he thinks [email protected] won’t be impacted as much and will have more returning customers.

Of the people who started biking because of the pandemic, some will likely continue riding when things return to normal, keeping business afloat. 

“I just don’t know what percentage will continue versus those who lose interest once the world gets back to something more normal. Time will tell.”

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Owners of CrossFit gyms in the Tysons area are distancing themselves from an insensitive tweet by CrossFit’s CEO.

Greg Glassman, the CEO, recently apologized for saying “It’s FLOYD-19” in response to the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation’s tweet calling racism a public health issue, according to BET.

Reebok and several CrossFit athletes have since cut ties with the branded fitness regimen because of the tweet, and hundreds of gyms across the U.S. have disaffiliated from CrossFit over the tweet, according to reports from Forbes and People.

Tysons Reporter reached out to CrossFit gyms located in Vienna, Falls Church and Tysons. Six of them have denounced Glassman’s tweet.

The staff behind the CrossFit Tysons Corner (8453-K Tyco Road) told Tysons Reporter in an email that they do not condone Glassman’s statements. “We are exploring options for de-affiliation,” the email said.

Curtis Blake of CrossFit Falls Church (130 W. Jefferson Street) said that its members are aware of the gym’s stance.

“I was deeply saddened by the insensitivity that was shown and/or the malice in Glassman’s post,” Blake told Tysons Reporter. “I would like to see him step down and a change in leadership before we personally [make] a decision.” Blake declined to comment further.

CrossFit Route 7 (8504-B Tyco R0ad) and CrossFit North Vienna (234 Dominion Road NE) — a.k.a. the Phoenix Athletix Club — both shared on social media that they do not support Glassman’s comments.

“At this point, we do not know exactly what the next steps look like for the gym,” CrossFit Route 7 said in its Facebook post.

Meanwhile, CrossFit Fairfax (2831 Dorr Ave) wrote on Facebook that it will honor the Black Lives Matter movement on Saturday, June 13, but did not include a direct mention of Glassman’s tweet.

“Racism and discrimination have no place in our gym, the broader fitness community, or the world at large,” the post said.

Marcus Ford of Tinner Hill CrossFit (336 S. Washington Street) said that the gym took to Facebook yesterday to reaffirm the location’s beliefs.

“I simply wanted to iterate to our extended community that we are steadfast in our beliefs, have always and will always operate without discrimination,” Ford told Tysons Reporter. “We openly welcome ALL people with no concern for race, religion, gender(s), sexualities or otherwise.”

Ford said that the incident “called into question the beliefs of CrossFit affiliates all over the world, and I personally and professionally felt the need to remind our community that no matter what methodology we use for fitness, we are resolute in the principles we’ve been known for by our community.”

The location is still a CrossFit gym, “however only time will tell what the future may hold for us in terms of affiliation,” Ford said.

Photo via CrossFit Tysons Corner/Facebook

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During these challenging times, we want to know what you’re doing to try to stay happy and healthy.

Self-care ranges from physical health to emotional wellness. While social distancing guidelines and Virginia’s stay-at-home order have restricted certain activities like gathering with friends at a restaurant, shopping at malls and going to movie theaters, many businesses have pivoted to virtual offerings.

Previously, Tysons Reporter has rounded up online workout classes from local gyms, bookstores offering delivery and curbside pickup and virtual religious services.

We also have a list of restaurants offering take-out and delivery in the Tysons area. For people wanting to make their own staycation, we have a guide for that too.

Let us know how you’re practicing self-care during the COVID-19 pandemic. Vote for your favorite from the list below and feel free to share your other top picks in the comments section.

Photo via Avrielle Suleiman on Unsplash

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People looking to exercise with someone while staying home can turn to their local gyms and fitness studios.

While Gov. Ralph Northam’s stay-at-home order is in place, many fitness studios in Tysons have decided to offer virtual classes.

A few months ago, Tysons Reporter rounded up the gyms and fitness studios around Tysons. Now, we took a look to see which ones have pivoted to online services, including group classes and one-on-one sessions.

From boxing videos to yoga classes, here’s what we found:

Interested people can check out each studio’s website for more information.

Photo via BREAKAWAY/Facebook

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COVID-19 has prompted a lot of closures, but there are still certain recreational activities in the Tysons area to help people stay healthy while social distancing.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests that people take care of their bodies through tactics like deep breathing, stretching and meditation during the recent outbreak.

Now that it’s officially spring, here’s where people can check out local gardens or get some sunshine while taking a walk.

Parks and Outdoor Activities 

The NOVA Parks website said that most parks will remain open for the time being, but with specific changes made to staffing. The visitor center is closed, but people are free to come and go, according to the website.

While Fairfax County has closed its indoor park facilities and recreation, nature and community centers through March 29, people can still use the county’s outdoor parks and trails.

Some parks in the Tysons area include:

The Meadowlark Botanical Gardens in Vienna are still open to the public but without programming like tours, according to its website.

“At the core of Meadowlark is a wonderful public garden; a pleasure garden for strolling and relaxing, a center for environmental and horticultural education,” the website said.

Apps and Fitness Resources 

Though it isn’t necessarily a new trend, fitness classes are going digital so that people can still exercise at home.

F45 in The Boro has suspended its in-studio workouts, but the instructors are posting daily home workout videos on Instagram.

“The workouts are designed to be done at home with little to no equipment and are uploaded each day via IG TV,” according to a press release. “Individuals have the opportunity to comment with any questions or modifications.”

Core Power Yoga closed its studios but offers digital classes so people can take guided classes on-demand from the comfort of their own home, its website said.

FitOn offers a large variety of fitness classes for clients and there is even a free version that people can take advantage of.

Digital Fitness Assessment on major app stores is yet another option for home fitness. It lets people record their goals and helps keep them on track, according to the app description.

Mental Wellbeing

For people feeling isolated, experts also suggest touching base with friends and family using digital tools such as Zoom, Skype and Google Hangouts. All these software allow people to video chat and see each other without coming into close proximity.

For mental health issues, The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Series Administration has a hotline where people can reach out if they are becoming concerned. People can chat with someone for free at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

The CDC also directly suggests avoiding substances like alcohol and drugs while in self-isolation.

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