Gyms are coming back, but wear your masks and keep your distance!
Only about a week after Gov. Andrew Cuomo said that “gyms are highly problematic” and brushed aside a lawsuit by gym owners demanding to reopen, on Monday he declared that gyms in New York City would be allowed to reopen between Aug. 24 and Sept. 2.
Regular gym-goers, however, need to accept the fact that this isn’t quite a return to the good old days, if you want to call February or early March the “old days.” Gyms will be limited to a third of their capacity, and like almost everywhere else, people would be required to wear masks at all times and adhere to social distancing rules. Owners must also assist the state with contact tracing efforts, and the city will need to inspect gyms before they open.
The somewhat surprising move by Cuomo comes after gym owners declared their desperation, and submitted their own plans to reopen. Gyms originally were supposed to reopen as part of Phase 4, but before this could happen, the governor changed his mind, at least partially due to rising COVID-19 levels in some Southern and Western states.
Brooklyn is full of gyms, from YMCAs like the Greenpoint Y and the Park Slope Y (Mayor Bill de Blasio’s favorite) to gyms known for bodybuilding such as Gold’s Gym, to neighborhood gyms such as the Eastern Athletic Club, to rock-climbing gyms like VITAL in Williamsburg to the world-famous Gleason’s boxing gym in DUMBO. And that doesn’t include dozens of yoga studios, karate studios and the like.