MIAMI (WSVN) - While South Florida has been excluded from entering phase two of reopening plans, gyms and other wellness facilities in Miami-Dade County will be allowed to reopen on Monday with restrictions.
Mayor Carlos Gimenez made the announcement during a virtual press conference, Thursday.
“As we continue to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, I have some very good news for those who want to stay in shape,” he said. “Gyms, dance studios, karate classes and much more will be able to open up on June 8th with specific rules about social distancing and when it’s important to wear masks.”
Gimenez said further, “I’ll be signing the orders later today for wellness facilities and summer camps to open on June 8.”
The mayor said the decision was not easy to make due to fear or resurgence of the coronavirus spread.
“There’s a lot of heavy breathing and sweating going on and putting particles in the air,” he noted.
As a means of preventing any further spread of the virus, new rules have been put in place for those allowed to reopen.
Masks will have to be worn in some areas, and fewer persons will be allowed to inhabit the space at one time.
“I’m excited to have everybody come back and start looking at the gym as a place of wellness again,” fitness trainer Jonas Grabarnick said.
Grabarnick trains at the North Miami wellness center called Adapt, whose name now takes on an additional meaning: adapting to the new normal.
“I know everybody has concerns and we want to make sure we’re addressing those concerns and make everyone feel comfortable with the guidelines that are being set up by the county,” he said.
Meanwhile, City of Miami Mayor Francis Suarez agreed with Gimenez’s decision.
“I actually think that gyms could have been opened earlier. I would have opened them earlier,” he said. “Unfortunately, in the city, we have to abide by the county’s decision. We can’t do it earlier than them.”
As Adapt and other health and fitness facilities wait for specifics from the county, they’re already taking action, even making a video letting clients know what to expect: temperature checks at the door, reduced class sizes, workouts set up for social distancing and lots of attention to sanitizing equipment — all in an effort to make the transition out of the coronavirus pandemic as safe as possible.
“We just want people to be comfortable coming back,” Grabarnick said. “As slow as they want to come back or as fast as they want to come back, they know that their health, nothing’s changed, is our primary concern.”
With school officially out for the summer, the mayor also offered some relief for parents when it comes to keeping the children entertained.
“Next week, we will also open up summer camps for kids with rules to protect against the spread of the virus, and to make sure that safety always comes first,” said Gimenez.
Gimenez reminded county residents about the nightly curfew still in place from 12 a.m. to 6 a.m.
The curfew has been ordered as a result of protests against police brutality that have taken place across Miami-Dade County.
The mayor also said beaches in the county will remain closed until the curfew is lifted.
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