TEMPE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -- EoS Fitness reopened its doors to members Saturday morning under a reopening agreement with the Arizona Department of Health Services, the company’s CEO Rich Drengberg announced through a letter sent to members via e-mail.
The Arizona Department of Health Services told Arizona's Family that EoS Fitness submitted a proposal to reopen and it was indeed approved. Another gym, Training for Warriors - Estrella in Goodyear, has been approved to reopen as well.
The Arizona Department of Health Services released the state's benchmarks on Monday providing guidance for when some businesses can resume operations.
At least a dozen EoS Fitness members, wearing masks, were waiting outside the Tempe location located near Warner Road and McClintock Drive about 10 minutes until doors opened. It’s not clear how many were allowed inside with reduced capacity.
James Chavez was one of the first in line. He lives in Buckeye and drove 45 minutes to workout at the Tempe location. He said it was the only one with a slot available and has been eagerly waiting to get back in the gym.
"I feel like we can go to the grocery store whenever we want, but we can't go to the gym. And that's part of your mental health. It's part of your physical health. it's just -- Arizona needs that," he said.
Members are not able to just walk into any EoS location. In order to use any of the 33 Arizona facilities, they must book a workout time slot ahead of time with as much as 24 hours in advance.
The Tempe location is open 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, and goes back to a 24 hour operation Monday.
Drengberg’s letter also states, “Part of the current Reopening Agreement that allows us to reopen immediately is that in-gym capacity will be limited (and enforced) to ensure that social distancing is completely achievable. Based on the current COVID-19 downward trend in Maricopa County, we anticipate being at an increased capacity level within the next few weeks.”
The list of rules on the EoS Fitness website for members include:
- Members must wear face coverings
- Members are required to sanitize every piece of equipment before and after use
- Maintain 6 feet of social distancing
The online list also includes what the gym agreed to:
- Limit number of members at one time
- Staff continuously circulates to discourage close proximity workouts
- Hospital grade/CDC recommended disinfectant and hand sanitizer available in all areas of club
All members must wear a face covering and the issue is “non-negotiable.” If you don’t want to wear one or have health reasons for not wearing one, EoS advises you wear a face shield. If members are not willing to do that, the rule suggests “now is not a good time to hit the gym."
On Monday, Arizona released benchmarks and guidance for reopening gyms, bars and movie theaters.
According to AZDHS, at close of business on Friday, 95 bars serving food, 89 gyms and five movie theaters had submitted proposals for reopening. So far, two have been approved and four have been denied. Those that have been denied have the opportunity to request an Informal Settlement Conference with the Department. We will continue reviewing proposals as quickly as possible.
The CEO of Mountainside Fitness, the company that sued over Gov. Ducey's executive order to shut down gyms in late June, sent a message to gym members Saturday saying that the company has not gotten a response from AZDHS regarding their waiver of reopening. The waiver was delivered to the state on August 11.