Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that New York state gyms and fitness centers will be allowed to reopen starting Aug. 24, so long as the follow the safety guidelines set in place.
Gyms and fitness center operators in Tompkins County are asked to submit their safety plan and Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) certification to the health department for approval; and to schedule an inspection before opening, using the NYS Safety Plan Template. Gyms have been closed since the governor signed his executive order closing all non-essential businesses in March.
“Our local gyms and fitness facilities are now part of the NYS Phase 4 reopening process and can reopen within the posted guidelines, including for indoor classes. The reopening of these spaces was delayed as COVID-19 has progressed, and we appreciate the patience and adherence to the guidance by gym operators,” Frank Kruppa, Public Health Director stated.
The new guidelines will also apply to standalone fitness sites including: hotel, residential, and office gyms and fitness centers, gyms and fitness centers in higher education institutions, yoga/Pilates/barre studios, boxing/kickboxing gyms, fitness boot camps, CrossFit or other plyometric box classes, and other group fitness classes.
As part of their requirements, gyms and fitness centers intent on reopening will be required to have a safety plan in place visibly noticeable at the site, operate in accordance with new guidelines regulating HVAC systems, operate at a 33 percent capacity limit for each given exercise room and supply appropriate face coverings for staff and visitors.
As described above, classes will also be allowed to resume, albeit in a limited capacity. All exercise classes are required to operate by appointment, follow social-distancing guidelines within the space (under 33 percent capacity) and sanitize the space after each use.
“Exercise is so important for everyone’s health and mental well-being during this challenging time. We ask that operators and the public be patient as Environmental Health conducts required inspections and as gyms put in place the necessary precautions to limit exposure and prevent the spread of the virus,” Kruppa stated.
Required documents must be submitted through the NYS forms webpage and to [email protected] For more information on reopening go to the NY Forward site, or contact TCHD.
TCDH requests that community residents remember to continue following social distancing guidelines, and recommends that individuals presenting symptoms or with concerns about being exposed to coronavirus assume isolated quarantine from home or seek testing. The Cayuga Health Sampling Site is open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. for testing by appointment. To register call Cayuga Health Call Center at 607-319-5708, or visit them online.