Area gyms get Governer’s clearance to re-open

By CLOEY CALLAHAN
Posted 8/26/20

Gyms were allowed to reopen beginning on August 24, with all gyms and fitness centers able to open by September 2.

Gyms include standalones, hotel gyms, residential gyms, office gyms and fitness …

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Area gyms get Governer’s clearance to re-open

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Gyms were allowed to reopen beginning on August 24, with all gyms and fitness centers able to open by September 2.

Gyms include standalones, hotel gyms, residential gyms, office gyms and fitness centers, gyms at higher education institutions, yoga/pilates/barre studios, boxing/kickboxing gyms, fitness boot camps and CrossFit or other plyometric boxes.

Facilities are required to operate at 33 percent capacity. Other requirements include sign-in with contact information and health screening, face covering at all times, 6 feet of separation at all times, cleaning and disinfection after each use, classes by appointment only, water fountains and communal showers are closed and local health departments will inspect before or within two weeks of the opening to ensure compliance.

“As New York maintains daily positive test rates below one percent, the State has determined that local elected officials can allow gyms and fitness centers to reopen at 33 percent capacity while following rigorous safety protocols, including wearing masks at all times,” Governor Andrew M. Cuomo said. “While it’s encouraging that we’ve reached the point where it’s acceptable for them to begin reopening in our communities, this is not the time to forget that the pandemic is ongoing. New Yorkers must closely adhere to the guidelines and local health departments are required to strictly enforce them to help ensure gyms and fitness centers reopen safely and protect the public health.”

Local elected officials may choose to delay the reopening of gyms and fitness centers until September 2 to provide time for required local health department inspections.

Newburgh’s popular gyms include Planet Fitness, Gold’s Gym Newburgh, Maximum Fitness and Orchard Valley CrossFit.

Most locations reopened on Monday, August 26, including Planet Fitness, located at 39 N Plank Road in Newburgh.

In addition to the Governor’s protocols, Planet Fitness’ management included arrows on the floor for a one way path, added new sanitation stations across the gym and in the locker rooms and guests can design their own one-on-one class with a trainer due to the cancellation of group classes.

Thirty-three percent capacity is 90 guests at Planet Fitness.

Planet Fitness’ website states, “No, members and guests are NOT required to wear a mask while actively working out but must follow all local restrictions.”

However, the Governor’s guidance takes precedence over Planet Fitness’ guidelines and masks will be required at all times, including when working out.

“The health department will stop in during the two-week span to ensure we are following all of the mandates,” said Assistant Manager Kaitlyn Lavery of Planet Fitness.

All of the gyms in Orange County had to email the County Health Department with pertinent information including pandemic response improvements the gym has made in 2020.

“We are going to apply the Governor’s standards, allow gyms to re-open, and reach out to gyms prior to undertake the inspections the Governor wants done,” Orange County Executive Steven M. Neuhaus said. “I know there are a lot of small gyms who have been waiting for this day and I have asked the Health Department to implement a timely inspection process.”

Neuhaus is urging the Orange County IDA to make grants of up to $10,000 to small gyms to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.

“People are realizing that health and fitness is an important part of their lives,” said Gold’s Gym Newburgh employee Kyle Williams. “We are more than ready for this reopening. We are anticipating a huge arrival of both existing and new members.”

Gold’s Gym Newburgh is reopening on Wednesday, August 26 at 12 p.m.

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