When news of the Coronavirus first started having an effect on me, I was hearing about what was happening in other countries and I thought that maybe the U.S. wouldn’t be hit as hard.
I was wrong.
When I started hearing about how other states were affected by the virus, including lockdowns, business closures and depletion of grocery stock, I thought that maybe Ohio wouldn’t be as negatively impacted.
I was wrong.
Even when I heard that gyms were being asked to shut their doors, I considered the format of training, the amount of clientele in a fitness facility at one time, the inability to socially distance and I thought: “We’re not like other places. We can continue to operate within safe guidelines and remain open.”
I was wrong.
One thing I have always applauded the fitness industry for is a plethora of options. There are boot camps, CrossFit, Zumba, Yoga, family oriented fitness centers and more. Even within personal training, you have one-on-one, semi-private (our forte), and small group training.
There is a fitness option for every type of person and every type of motivation.
It always fascinated me how the more “competition” we saw as the rise of fitness options grew around me, the busier we got. I wasn’t upset that we had more competition, I was thrilled about it. Everyone (client and coach) was in a winning position. Every format had an opportunity to, as they say, have a slice of the pie.
Unfortunately, we all were forced to shut down.
Businesses which had never dreamed of making a name for themselves through online and virtual offerings now saw that the only way they could generate revenue was to fire up a Zoom meeting and keep business moving forward. For many, it worked. For many others, they’ll never be able to open their doors again.
When this article is released, we will be one week away from having the government green light to officially reopen our doors. That will mark about 10 weeks of a semi-operational business; a business that made a name for itself with almost solely a face-to-face presence that had to embrace the online world, with varied results, for those 10 weeks.
What will change for us?
Strangely (and happily), not much.
Long before I ever considered what living through a pandemic might feel like, our operations fell somewhat neatly into what the guidelines for safety would call for. Our facility has a little over 3000 square feet of operating space. While we do have an assortment of equipment, it’s rare that two people are side-by-side in a way that they can’t easily be six feet apart. Even at our busiest, we still have fewer than 10 people working on their individualized training plans.
There will be some housekeeping changes that will be in place for us: the state is encouraging all clients entering and leaving the facility to wash/sanitize their hands. There is also the encouragement to sanitize the equipment (benches, weights, attachments, etc.) immediately after use.
In addition, my staff and I are required to wear masks, wash/sanitize our hands, clean equipment behind our clients, and we may be required to perform temperature checks before shifts.
I have slated the scheduling of clients upon restarting to have no more than 3 people actively training at one time so we can keep the flow of workouts moving and prepare for the next incoming shift of 2-3 clients at the next training interval (approximately 30 minutes each).
We will also be temporarily removing our heavy bench press and squat work which would typically require having a spotter on hand for assistance.
In areas where equipment is spaced closer than six feet apart, our members will be encouraged to wait until space is available to appropriately distance themselves from others until the required equipment is safely ready for use. Fortunately, in our case, there is rarely an issue with this.
We will be installing touchless soap/sanitizer dispensers and touchless bathroom faucets to limit contact with items that might frequently require otherwise.
All in all, we’re ready.
We’re ready to get back to the business we love; training the people we love and root for day in and day out.
We’re ready to get our RevFit family back to the routines they’ve acclimated to, the programs they thrive on, and the community they haven’t seen in person since March.
And that begins again on May 26.
We look forward to having you be a part of it.
If we can’t control the world revolving around us, we can keep doing what it is we do best:
“We Make Great People Greater”