PHILADELPHIA – On Tuesday, Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley announced that gyms and fitness centers are allowed to operate again. All facilities must abide by strict social distancing requirements and mandates. Members are also mandated to wear masks.
The city’s case counts stabilized at 100 cases per day. That is why Philadelphia is taking preventative measures to allow the reopening of these facilities. Philly Voice reports the guidelines set for gyms and fitness centers will follow.
- Masks must be worn at all times
- People are to observe social distancing, at least six feet apart
- Classes are capped at ten people
- All gyms and fitness centers are subject to proactive, unplanned, and unscheduled inspections.
- Gyms and fitness centers that do not abide by the guidelines will be automatically shut down.
Farley also announced that weightlifting is encouraged instead of aerobic exercise. People’s breathing will be affected when they wear masks and do strenuous activities such as aerobics. He said, “Our biggest concern around the gyms is that when people are doing vigorous aerobic exercise, it’s very uncomfortable to wear masks. And the gym owners may not want to enforce that. We think that if they o enforce that, they can operate in a safe way. But we’re really putting the onus on the gym managers to do that enforcement and then we’re going to inspect to make sure that takes place.”
Planet Fitness, one of the fitness centers allowed to operate, has a new slogan. They’ve added “Social Fitnessing” to their “Judgment Free Zone.” The report by 6ABC included President and CEO of National Fitness Partners Stephen Kindler Jr.’s statement, where he said, “Our team is extremely excited to get back to work. It’s been a long hundred plus days for our teams.” Kinder said that his staff ensured little contact as they cleaned their work areas and during their workouts.
Touchless check-ins and sanitation stations are set within the building, and masks are required. Kinder commented, “It’s going to need to be worn at all times, and our staff here is going to be enforcing that.”
Philadephia Mayor Jim Kenney said that the city is ensuring that the mandate is followed. On Twitter, he wrote, “If you find it difficult to exercise with a mask on, don’t go to the gym. Your actions could shut down the entire gym.”
Gyms can reopen on Monday under strict guidelines, including:— Jim #VaxUpPhilly Kenney (@PhillyMayor) July 19, 2020
➡️ Masks at all times
➡️ 6 feet of distance at all times
➡️ Fewer than 10 people in classes@PHLPublicHealth will conduct unannounced inspections.#MaskUpPHLhttps://t.co/5J2bIgvKzJ