After months of waiting, gym goers and gym owners are finally seeing a light at the end of the tunnel.
“We will put our protocols on Monday for gyms to open, which will follow the protocol," Governor Cuomo said in a telephone conference call.
“I am happy to hear and it could be all the pressure we’ve been putting on Governor Cuomo to make a decision for us because we’ve had no guidelines whatsoever," Barb St. Pierre, the owner of Trillium Fitness says.
“We’re excited to get going and happy for the 4 million New Yorkers who are gym members and the 900,000 who are Planet Fitness gym members. They deserve the chance to get back to the gym," David Humphrey, the owner of 100-plus Planet Fitness franchises says.
And the owners have been fighting to give gym goers the chance. Over 1,500 of them filed a class action lawsuit against Governor Cuomo to put the pressure on.
“I think he’s not going to make it easy. We put together a 50-page document sent to the governor's office as to what we will do as gym owners in New York state," St. Pierre says.
During the downtime, it’s been all about social fitnessing.
“We’re going to have thermometer, temperature checks. You know filling out the forms, signing off on do you have any signs of symptoms," St. Pierre says.
“You walk in the door and there’s contactless check-in. There’s temperature checks on entry. There are masks in appropriate parts of the gym. There’s enforced social distancing. Every other treadmill is closed off so you’re always six feet apart," Humphrey says.
But gym owners are still playing the guessing game of what the guidelines will look like.
“It’ll be interesting if we have hit the mark on everything or if we’ll fall short on a couple things that we didn’t even think of that they want us to do. I’m anxious to just get that and get it done," St. Pierre says.
Now seems like the time that gyms can get it done. Governor Cuomo said on Friday that the positivity rate of tests has been less than one percent for seven straight days.
“The governor and his team have done a phenomenal job of making states safe and that’s our starting point, is to make it even better. Make people even healthier. We can handle the part of making people healthier. Losing weight, getting in better cardiovascular condition, and we’ll make sure that they stay safe in our facilities from COVID," Humphrey says.
As for fidgety fitness fans?
“I’d say look at the facts. The facts are very clear in the case of Planet Fitness and a great majority of gyms. Gyms are part of the solution, not a part of the problem,” Humphrey says.
Finally, that solution seems to be getting worked out.