Businesses across Los Angeles continue to reopen after forced shutdowns due to coronavirus but while some businesses are preparing to welcome back customers, others are calling it quits for good.
The County of Los Angeles allowed gyms to begin reopening on July 12. Gyms are required to have policies to protect employee health, enforce physical distancing, have infection control measures, communicate rules to everyone and ensure equitable access to critical services.
Many local fitness centers have adapted to the new protocols.
Cyclebar opened in January of this year before being forced to close in March. The center is reopening with newly installed air purifiers, touch free check-in systems, a mask rule for before and after classes, shorter classes and they have cut their capacity from 44 bikes to just 20.
“We have decided to not offer towel service, lockers or showers at this time,” said owner Steph Sklar-Mulcahy in a statement. “We are doing everything in our power to keep our members and staff safe.”
Burn Fitness on the Promenade is using an app to allow customers to schedule their workouts with 40 slots available per hour. Clients will have their temperature taken at the front desk, answer a quick health survey, sign a liability waiver and then sanitize their hands before entering.
“We are confident that when our staff leads by example, and works together with members, Burn Fitness will come back better than ever,” said a reopening statement. “For those who cannot make it to the club, we will continue offering our Group Classes and provide fitness instruction virtually.”
Basecamp is reopening two of its three Los Angeles locations (Santa Monica and Pasadena) with new health protocols.
“The health and safety of our members and employees has always been and will continue to be our top priority.” said Ben Camper, brand president of Basecamp Fitness. “Our team has been hard at work for weeks, rethinking the Basecamp experience from top to bottom in order to ensure we don’t just meet, but exceed CDC and local government guidelines – all while delivering the incredible workout our members have come to know and love.”
The gym has reduced the number of classes per day to allow additional time for sanitation and members will have dedicated workout spaces with their own bikes and weight equipment. Check-in is touch free and in-house showers have been closed.
Additionally, members and staff will be asked to refrain from high-fives and hugs and instead, air fives, waves, shout-outs, foot bumps and peace signs will be encouraged as gestures of comradery and support.
While many gyms are reopening, at least one is throwing in the towel.
24 hour Fitness filed for bankruptcy this month and announced it would close 130 locations, including its downtown Santa Monica store.
The company had reported financial trouble before the mass closing of gyms but said it was the Coronavirus crisis that pushed it over the edge.
“If it were not for COVID-19 and its devastating effects, we would not be filing for Chapter 11. With that said, we intend to use the process to strengthen the future of 24 Hour Fitness for our team and club members, as well as our stakeholders,” said Chief Executive Officer Tony Ueber. “We expect to have substantial financing with a path to restructuring our balance sheet and operations to ensure a resilient future. The COVID-19 environment has proved that attention to health and fitness are more important now than ever before. As a result of this restructuring, we will gain financial strength and flexibility to accelerate our business transformation plan, which includes reinvestment in our existing clubs, opening new clubs and introducing several new innovative products and services that will enhance the fitness experience for our club members and guests for many years to come.”
Gyms are not the only casualties of the shutdown.
Pacific Dining Car recently announced the closure of their Santa Monica location.
“Our Santa Monica location was a casualty of the coronavirus crisis, said the restaurant website. “We’re deeply grateful to our staff and customers for 30 years in business on the Westside. The contents of the restaurant are available via our online auction, which ends June 22.”