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Local gyms prepping amidst coronavirus concerns

While many gyms, such as Genesis Health Clubs, are temporarily closing their facilities, some gyms are staying open and fully operational.

Posted: Mar 17, 2020 7:26 PM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo). Local gyms across St. Joseph are cancelling their group exercise activities and classes, making it a lot harder to shed that extra winter weight. 

Gym owners are following government guidance amid coronavirus concerns to limit crowds to 10 people or less. Owners say they are closely watching recommendations from health and public officials.

While many gyms, such as Genesis Health Clubs, are temporarily closing their facilities, some gyms are staying open and fully operational. 

Two local crossfit gyms, BFIT and Midwest Method, are continuing to offer group workouts to its members while maintaining a sanitized facility. 

BFIT's owner says in a world where everything is changing, people need the gym now more than ever. 

“When everything else is not normal, this is still normal and people need that. That’s the one thing I feel like we’re still able to provide, is normalcy in their lives cause outside these walls, it is stressful,”said Brad Durham, owner of BFIT.

The coronavirus is disrupting everyday life. Something as simple as going to the gym isn't so simple anymore.

While most gyms are encouraging members to stay home or practice social distancing as a safety precaution, some gyms aren't.

“If you’re in here working out here in a clean environment and taking the proper protections than that’s doing just as good if not better in some cases than just sitting at home and festering in your own gyms,”said Max Moore, general manager of Midwest Method. 

Ultimately, the CDC urges people to avoid groups of 10 or larger.

Some local gyms have noticed the importance of the CDC's message trickling down into their gym. 

“We are seeing less traffic and I think people are heeding the advice of the professors for at-risk groups and those people are staying which I think is a great thing,”said Sue White, CEO of the St. Joseph YMCA. 

Not only are fewer people going to the gym during the COVID-19 pandemic, but gym members who do go are interacting with each other less. 

“We do little toe-taps instead of high-fives to make sure that we aren’t getting ‘too contaminated’ if you will,”said Moore. 

Both crossfit facilities say if the city orders them to shut down their classes, they will comply. 

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Temperatures and humidity will continue to climb on Wednesday making it feel like a very humid day across northwest Missouri and northeast Kansas. Temperatures will warm into the mid to upper 80s and increasing moisture and instability. This will likely mean shower and thunderstorm chances for the remainder of Thursday and Thursday night.
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