VANCOUVER, WA (KPTV) - New COVID-19 restrictions will impact fitness centers and plans for weddings and funerals in Washington state.
Weddings and funerals are still allowed, but maximum occupancy is limited to 30 people or fewer for indoor and outdoor ceremonies, the new guidelines state.
Gyms will also have new restrictions, including expanding the space between people when they are working out. Some gyms are big enough to handle the restrictions, but others aren’t big enough to make the necessary changes.
At Industrial Crossfit in Vancouver, the workouts are a different now, with smaller class seizes and more cleaning measures in place. Owner Jennifer Mihaljcic says they’re managing with the restrictions in place.
“We’re definitely down, there’s a good amount of people that aren’t comfortable coming back yet,” Mihaljcic said. “We didn’t go with taping off the gym just because our workouts change every day, so it might not work the same every day.”
Mihaljcic says she thinks many people have gotten use to new safety measures.
“I think that we’ve gotten used to it,” Mihaljcic said. “People clean, clean, clean like crazy, everything’s disinfected. Basically, everything they touch they spray and clean off and it’s been really helpful. And people have just been really great in abiding by the rules and making sure that, you know, we’re successful in opening.”
Under the governor’s new restrictions:
- Distancing requirements are increased from six feet to 300 square-feet per person,e xcept while practicing team sports.
- For larger facilities, occupancy is limited to 25 percent.
- Everyone is required to wear a face covering indoors except during strenuous exercise and must put the face covering back on after the strenuous activity.
- Showers, hot tubs, saunas, steam rooms, tanning beds, squash, and racquetball courts are all closed.
- Locker rooms will be limited for hand-washing and restrooms only.
The new spacing requirement is a change Mihaljcic says her gym can adapt to.
“We have a large enough space where, including the coach, if we used every bit of square footage, we could have 13 people in here,” Mihaljcic said. “I don’t feel comfortable doing that just because of the equipment that’s out and everything. But we were able to jump our class sizes up from five people to eight people and I feel like we’re able to maintain the sufficient social distancing that’s required. I do think going to a per square footage is a better route to go, but that being said, I do feel for the smaller gyms that, you know, may have the same membership base as I do but just the lesser amount of square footage and so they can’t accommodate them.”
There is a petition that has thousands of signatures asking for the new spacing requirements to change, claiming that the restrictions will put small wellness and fitness studios out of business.
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