Despite COVID Restrictions, Mass. Gyms Ready for New Year's Resolution Crowd

Gyms in Boston are temporarily closed, and across the state, they’re reduced to 25-percent capacity.

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The new year is bringing new resolutions. Nine out of 10 Americans are setting a resolution specific for fitness, according to a study by Planet Fitness. 

“My resolution is to get in the gym everyday now and get my bench press up to 200 pounds,” said one Planet Fitness gym goer in Dedham, Massachusetts.

But during the new year, when gyms are normally their busiest, COVID is changing everything. Gyms in Boston are temporarily closed, and across the state, they’re reduced to 25-percent capacity.

Steven Lombardi of Planet Fitness said, "At 25-percent capacity when you have 20,000 square feet, we still have enough space to allow a lot of members in our club. We also have this feature on the Planet Fitness app called a ‘crowd meter’ and any member can look at that before they come into the club and it will tell them how busy the club is right now or how busy it’s predicted to be tonight or tomorrow.” 

Gym goers at Planet Fitness in Dedham say they feel comfortable with the precautions in place. 

“It’s been hard but I do feel like they keep it clean in here and they do keep you separate,” said Heather Boyle. 

Owners of Boston fitness centers are frustrated that they will be forced to close again starting Wednesday due to the worsening coronavirus pandemic.

Julian Biju said, "They do a lot of sanitation work like cleaning down the equipment, they also make us distance out.” 

Because this is such a big time for gyms, Planet Fitness says they’re offering an enticing incentive for people to join: no sign up fee and $10 a month from now until Jan. 7. 

Wearing a mask at the gym is also mandatory, but people say it’s still worth it. 

“It is very difficult to work out while wearing a mask, but I think going to the gym is more important than stopping your exercise routine, it’s more important to be healthy and it clears my head and gives me a space away from what’s going on out in the world,” said Ryan Moray. 

The 25-percent capacity at gyms statewide stays in effect through at least Jan 10.

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