Life Time, a Minnesota-based chain of sports clubs, announced on Thursday that it would begin requiring the wearing of masks at its workout facilities to slow the spread of COVID-19 — and it also came up with a set of guidelines training on how to get back in shape with a mask.
“Our decision to require masks at all clubs is a response to ongoing national concerns,” chief operating officer Jeff Zwiefel said in a statement. “And, in addition to our health and safety protocols already in place, is a simple but effective measure to provide our valued members with the safest possible environment and to stay open, which helps to secure livelihoods. and employment of our team members.”
The move comes as gyms and fitness centers reopen or near reopening across the country, and as states and local governments consider the two ways to ease coronavirus restrictions and avoid a new outbreak. thrust.
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Life Time said it has so far reopened 125 of its more than 150 U.S. and Canadian locations “to some degree.” More than 100 of those locations are in areas where local regulations already mandate masks, but the company’s requirement will go into effect Monday, July 27 at all of its reopened locations.
Members will be required to wear masks in all common areas and where social distancing guidelines cannot be adhered to.
Founder and CEO Bahram Akradi told ‘The Ingraham Angle’ in late March that he and the rest of the company’s management team would not receive any compensation and would redirect the money to pay base workers during the shutdowns. coronavirus across the country – but he also warned that with no set date for reopening, many of these workers would face furlough.
On Friday, with most of its sites reopened, the company declined to give an update on employee compensation, but said the management team was still without pay “for the greater good of its members. team, members and the company”.
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During the coronavirus crisis, Life Time has enlisted a team of experts to develop a plan to teach gym goers how to breathe properly with a face mask on during a workout and what to eat to get your body to optimize its use of energy. oxygen. And the company said it had designed and would soon start selling its own “athletic performance mask”.
With around 40,000 employees, another shutdown could be disastrous for workers and customers who want to get back to business as usual.
Suggestions include reducing the intensity of your workouts until you’re used to wearing a mask, practicing your breathing, and taking vitamin B12, folate, iron, and creatine monohydrate with your supplements. and nutrients.
Other major gym chains have also outlined plans for how they could modify their operations as the reopening continues.
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Top of the list for Gold’s Gym, at least at its company-owned facilities, are social distancing and increased sanitization measures. Employees will be required to wear masks and gloves and the gym has designed a one-hour “intermission” from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. to restock and clean facilities.
Gold’s Gym CEO Adam Zeitsiff told Fox News earlier this month that fitness centers had voluntarily closed across the country before governments imposed their own closures due to concerns for the health of their communities.
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But now, having put precautions in place to slow the spread of the coronavirus, he said, it’s time to let people get back to their workouts as best they can.
“Exercise is medicine,” he said.
Fox News’ Janine Puhak, Charles Creitz and Sam Dorman contributed to this report.