Los Angeles Gyms Close Amid Pandemic | Athletic Business

Los Angeles Gyms Close Amid Pandemic

The coronavirus outbreak is forcing businesses and events around the globe to temporarily close, and the fitness industry is not immune.

Even in cities such as Los Angeles, where fitness culture thrives, drastic steps are being taken by state and local leaders to curb the spread of the virus and encourage “social distancing.”

Sunday evening, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced that all of the city’s gyms and fitness centers would close at midnight, according to Los Angeles Magazine. The mayor’s executive action also shuttered the city’s bars, nightclubs, movie theaters and performance venues.

“First our city is strong… we will get through this,” Garcetti said in a video announcing the move. “Second, our city is not shutting down; we’re not planning to do so and we never will.”

Garcetti attempted to assure citizens that essentials would be available.

“Know that the power will be on, know that you will have water," he said. "Get the food you need, and look out for each other and those folks who need your help.”

The move comes despite efforts by gyms and fitness centers to ramp up cleaning and disinfecting efforts. Los Angeles Magazine wrote that brands like Equinox tripled their cleaning efforts, and had been deploying stronger cleaning agents prior to the shut down. Members, too, had been making more of an effort to slow the spread, including by using gloves to prevent direct contact with weights and equipment, and using social pressure to encourage wipe-downs and hand washing.

It’s unclear what the impact of Garcetti’s action will be on fitness centers, but it’s no surprise that smaller independent studios could be hardest hit. The executive action will keep gyms closed through March 31.

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