Cortland County Health Department addresses the reopening of gyms & fitness centers

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This is a press release from the Cortland County Health Department.

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo recently released guidance allowing gyms and fitness centers to reopen. The guidance applies 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 box classes, and other group fitness classes. The guidance documents can be accessed at the NY Forward website under Phase 4 industries.

Gyms and fitness centers can reopen in Cortland County starting August 24, 2020, if the following requirements are met:

  1. Read the guidance and prepare a safety plan using the NYS Safety Plan Template.
  2. The safety plan must include the required certification of the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system by a professional as identified in the guidance. Please include details of your facility’s air handling system(s) or air handling plans in the “other” section of the reopening safety plan. If your facility does not have an HVAC system or one under operator control, you will need to submit that information and a description of the ventilation procedures being taken in accordance with the guidance.
  3. Submit your safety plan including HVAC certification to [email protected]
  4. Submit your affirmation to NYS through the link at the end of the Gym guidance document.

Please refer to the detailed guidance for more information as well as these requirements that are specific to gyms and fitness facilities:

  • Capacity: 33% occupancy limit.
  • PPE: There are special requirements for face coverings at gyms and fitness centers.
  • Classes: By appointment/reservation only; maximum class capacity limited by the 6-feet social distancing rules, but in no case more than 33% of the typical class size; cleaning and disinfection required between each session.
  • Air Handling Systems: Gyms should operate with MERV-13 or greater filtration. If they are unable to operate at that level, they must have a HVAC professional document their inability to do so and adopt additional ventilation and mitigation protocols. Documentation from a HVAC professional is required for all facilities with HVAC systems.

After the Cortland County Health Department (CCHD) has received your plan and HVAC certification, the CCHD will contact you to schedule an inspection or request additional information.

Continue to monitor the NY Forward website for information. Please call the Cortland County Health Department @ 607-758-5526 with any additional questions.