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As a follow up to my prior email, the detailed guidelines for the reopening of gyms and fitness centers are now available on the NY Forward website. The details about the required inspection procedures which will be performed by Westchester County Dept. of Health will be released as soon as available.
All Gyms & Fitness Centers Able to Open by Sept 2;
Indoor Fitness Classes May Be Delayed Beyond September 2
Facilities Required to Operate at 33 Percent Capacity and Follow Rigorous Health and Safety Protocols, Including Masks at All Times
New York State is allowing gyms to reopen starting August 24, with mandatory mask use, recommended HVAC upgrades, and limiting usage to 33% of capacity. Additionally, the Governor’s current plan necessitates that County Department of Health inspect each gym before they can reopen.
Percurrent guidance, the County will also be able to determine whether small ‘class’-style practices may reopen. Local elected officials may choose to delay the reopening of gyms and fitness centers until September 2, and may also choose to delay the reopening of indoor fitness classes until a date beyond September 2. The County has asked the Governor’s office to clarify whether this determination is done on a case by case basis or as a blanket rule.
These guidelines apply to fitness activities and facilities, including, but not limited to: standalone, 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 boxes, and other group fitness classes. Residential and hotel gyms and fitness centers must have staff available to ensure compliance with this guidance.
NOTE: It is MANDATORY that County Department of Health inspect each gym before, or within 14 days after, opening. DETAILS TO FOLLOW ON INSPECTION PROCEDURES.
1. Read and affirm the Gym & Fitness Center Guidelines
· Gym & Fitness Center Summary Guidelines
· Gym & Fitness Center Detailed Guidelines
· Online Affirmation Form
2. In order to prepare for your inspection and reopening, complete a Business Safety plan and return it to Lisa Davis, Business Ambassador, plus keep a copy available on site. Ensure that it covers all the items listed in the NY State Guidance below.
· Business Safety Plan Template
3. Prepare for the required Westchester County Dept. of Health inspection
· Details to follow on scheduling the required inspection
• Capacity: 33% occupancy limit.
• Access: Sign-in with contact information and health screening required.
• PPE: Appropriate face coverings required at all times.
• Distancing: 6 feet of separation at all times.
• Hygiene/Cleaning: Cleaning and disinfection supplies made available to customers; shared equipment cleaned after every use; staff must also be available to clean and disinfect equipment in between uses; rental equipment must be cleaned and disinfected between customer use.
• Classes: By appointment/reservation only; maximum class capacity capped at number of people that can adhere to the 6-feet social distancing rules, but in no case more than 33% of the typical class size (i.e., leave stations, cycles, etc. vacant); classes should be scheduled to allow additional time for cleaning and disinfection in between each session.
• Amenities: Water bottle refill stations permitted, but not shared water fountains; communal showers are closed, but individual showers/stalls can remain open so long as they are cleaned in between use.
• Air Handling Systems: Gyms should operate at MERV-13 or greater; if they are unable to operate at that level, they must have heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) professional document their inability to do so and adopt additional ventilation and mitigation protocols from American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
• Inspection: Local health departments shall inspect before or within two weeks of the gym/fitness center opening to ensure compliance.