SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - In accordance with Governor DeSantis’ Full Phase One Re-Opening Plan, Florida gyms will be able to welcome back their members on Monday after weeks closed due to the pandemic.
“Gyms without a doubt can operate safely within this first stage one,” Adam Tar, the co-owner of Crossfit North Port, said.
Governor DeSantis agrees. Starting Monday, fitness centers can open their doors, operating at a 50% capacity, to ensure social distancing can occur, and equipment must be disinfected after each use. Plus, many gym owners say they’ll be putting additional safety measures in place.
“Before, there were classes that you would rotate every 30 seconds or so, but then come back again several times on that same piece of equipment. Just think about how much cleaning would have to happen in a situation like that, so they’ve change the workouts – at least temporarily – to that you’re staying in the same station the whole time you’re there,” Lamar Miller, the owner of F45 Training in Sarasota, explained.
As fitness centers across the Suncoast are making these adjustments, Governor DeSantis is in full support of the eagerness of getting back to routine.
“This is a respiratory virus that tends to attack people who have health problems or who aren’t as in good physical condition. So don’t we want people to exercise? Don’t we want people to stay in shape? It’s actually going to make them more resistant to these severe consequences. I think this is important. I think this is good,” said Governor DeSantis.
Plus, this will also help the mental health of many residents.
“Our members are feeling down. This is an outlet for them to release stress, to connect with people in our community and they're just feeling stir crazy and ready to get out of the house and get back to their fitness routine,” Sarah Tar, the Co-Owner of Crossfit North Port, tells us.
However, this period has also allowed these fitness communities to evolve.
“I think we may keep doing the Zoom classes. At least, at first because there are going to be people who just aren’t comfortable coming back to class yet. We don’t want to alienate them right away, but even moving forward it’s a great opportunity for us to stay in touch with our members as they travel and things like that,” expressed Miller.
The governor is also encouraging gyms and fitness centers to incorporate outside workouts as much as possible to limit the amount of time spent in a confined area.