IMG Academy Invests in Best-in-Class Sports Laundry System to Support Student Athletes
March 2015 | Download Case Study
IMG Academy’s 500-acre campus not only touts world-class athletic facilities – where student-athletes train and compete – it also boasts a Sports Laundry System™ that’s proven in clinical studies to kill 99.9 percent of bacteria and viruses, includingstaph and antibiotic-resistant MRSA, in the wash.
Equipment Manager Cortez Robinson worked closely with LaundryPro of Florida, Inc., in Lakeland, to select the right laundry solution.
The System isn’t just used to clean athletic laundry, it’s relied on to help prevent the spread of infection among student-athletes. It works by cleaning and disinfecting everything from loops, shorts, pants and sweats, to uniforms, towels, helmets and shoulder pads, according to Robinson. “Because it doesn’t just clean, but truly disinfects dirty laundry in the wash, the system helps prevent the spread of infection to student-athletes from contaminated laundry,” said Robinson.
Superbugs like MRSA tend to spread easily in close-knit environments, including locker rooms, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). The CDC’s “Antibiotic Resistance Threats in the United States, 2013” warns the public of a number of hard-to-treat pathogens, including MRSA. Staph bacteria, including MRSA, are among the most common causes of healthcare-associated infections, according to the CDC. Such infections can also harass athletic locker rooms, where athletes come into frequent contact with each other, as well as with contaminated laundry and surfaces. Once infected, athletes can’t participate in practices or games until the infection is resolved.
The System — Washers/Ozone/Dryers
IMG’s Sports Laundry System, which is located in its new Fieldhouse, teams two 55-pound capacity washer-extractors with a 90-pound capacity washer-extractor, ozone injection, two 75-pound capacity dryers and one 125-pound capacity dryer. “I really like the system because of the state-of-the-art ozone disinfection, programmability to clean a variety of items, and productivity,” said Robinson. The process couldn’t be simpler. He loads, selects a program number and presses start.
Programmable to Clean & Disinfect a Variety of Items
The Sports Laundry System washers are programmed by item type to properly combine ozone, chemicals, rotation action, water temperatures and levels, number of baths, and extract speeds for superior results. Once a load is started, ozone is introduced into the washer sump. The ozone works to break up organic matter, clean and disinfect.
At IMG, Robinson relies on 13 programs for cleaning helmets and shoulder pads, football and lacrosse uniforms, rags, white and colored baseball uniforms, practice uniforms, towels, loops, and coach’s laundry, among others.
Disinfection of Helmets & Pads
The System’s ability to wash and disinfect football helmets and pads is big perk, according to Robinson. “Washing helmets and shoulder pads is one part of the reconditioning process that I can do in-house,” he said. “I put the helmets in the washers programmed for a quarterturn rotation. The washers combine the ozone and detergent to disinfect the helmets. Once washed, the helmets are air-dried.”
Quick Wash/Dry Saves Time
Robinson, who served as an equipment manager on another campus with hard-mount washers, attests the Sports Laundry System saves him considerable time. Its high-speed soft-mount washers generate extract speeds of up to 354 G-force—considerably higher than typical hard-mount washers. In doing so, they remove more moisture from laundry, which cuts dry time and bolsters laundry productivity.
“Items removed from the washer are nearly dry,” said Robinson. Laundry, which took 45 minutes to dry where he used to work, now takes just 20 minutes. “Our system at IMG really speeds up the process,” he said.
Less Time Doing Laundry
That’s a good thing. It means Robinson can dedicate more time to his other responsibilities, including managing inventory, ordering uniforms, budgeting, and traveling with the football and baseball teams.
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