Planet Fitness staff, members talk safety amid first day back in almost 6 months

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Holt, Mich. (WLNS)– It’s been a long 177 days for people in the fitness world, but now that gyms are finally able to reopen, how are they keeping people safe?

Governor Gretchen Whitmer released a number of guidelines fitness facilities must follow, but even though the increased cleaning and safety protocols might require a bit more work, Planet Fitness Regional Manager Fred Mussehl said he’s just glad to welcome people back.

“It’s like Christmas morning. Everyone’s excited everyone’s thanking us for being open. Everyone’s happy we’re back to business and our doors are open,” Mussehl said.

Mussehl added that masks are required at all times, every other cardio machine is turned off to keep people 6 feet apart and cleaning stations are set up in several spots around the gym. Members are urged to wipe off equipment before and after use and staff are also cleaning more frequently. In addition, there are markings on the floor to keep people socially distanced around the facility.

Every other cardio machine at Planet Fitness has been marked off to keep people 6 feet apart on the machines

“I felt safe you know, I’m wiping down the machines before I use it and after I use it and everything that I’m gonna touch, everything else that somebody else can touch, I wipe that down prior to and after my use as well,” Planet Fitness Member Darius Anthony said.

Under the governor’s order, gyms have to limit capacity to 25 percent. For the Holt club, that means a maximum of 86 people. Mussehl said members can check the website or Planet Fitness mobile app to gauge the crowd meter before they come in for a workout. He doesn’t expect people will have to wait to enter the facility.

For those who aren’t ready to head back just yet, Mussehl said the company is allowing people to freeze their membership. In addition, contract cancellation fees will be waived for the time being.

“We want to make sure everyone knows that we’re here for them. This is a different situation for all of us and once they’re ready to come back we want them to come back to planet fitness,” Mussehl said.

He added, Planet Fitness will work with the health department if they learn of a potential case of COVID-19.

“If something were to happen, being a gym we have the ultimate tracking system. We know who’s checked in and what time and everyone that was around them at that period of time so we can trace it like no other business,” Mussehl said.

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