LACEY, NJ — Dana Gan doesn’t know what the future holds. They brought some Retro Fitness employees back in June, thinking the state might let them reopen in July, but that didn’t happen, the general manager says.
The general manager of Retro Fitness in Lacey has no idea when New Jersey might allow gyms to reopen. But the gym realized one factor in its control: they can give back to the community.
They’ve done so by offering free outdoor classes. The gym offers several classes, including boot camp, power yoga and strength training.
Here’s the latest schedule:
“We’re bringing out the weights,” Gan told Patch. “We’re bringing out the barbells, the dumbbells and some equipment. People don’t have equipment at home.”
Governor Phil Murphy ordered all the state’s gyms to close March 16. Murphy has relaxed several coronavirus restrictions since then, including allowing outdoor classes and individual sessions.
Retro Fitness has frozen all member accounts since the coronavirus closures. It’s a difficult time for the gym business, but they also thought about how it affects their gym goers.
“We just hope to be open soon so that we can give back to the community and get people back in,” Gan said. “I know a lot of people — this is their well-being that’s being threatened here.”
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While there’s a public-health emphasis on staying at home, the classes help people get out and get moving. They offer the free classes to members only, but anyone can sign up for a membership. They won’t get charged until the gym can reopen its interior, and Retro Fitness won’t retroactively bill anyone for the outdoor classes.
People can join online and can show up about 10 minutes before a class, Gan says. Retro Fitness created a contactless signup process, where people can scan a QR code with their phone and then set up a membership.
“To be honest, we’re not sure what to expect,” Gan said of reopening the gym itself. “We want everyone to be safe. We want our members to be safe. We want our employees to be safe. I’m sure the (state officials) know what they’re doing.”
All classes require social distancing. Owner Ron Pfeiffer bought a fogger with bactericide. After each class, staff put on masks and gloves and brings equipment back into the gym to get fogged and disinfected.
“People are really happy to be out and sharing a little bit of community,” Gan said, “even though we’re spaced apart.”
Read more: NJ Coronavirus, Reopen Updates: Here’s What You Need To Know
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This article originally appeared on the Lacey Patch