Vernon’s 30 Minute Hit is one of several gyms that have closed due to the coronavirus pandemic. (30 Minute Hit photo)

Vernon’s 30 Minute Hit is one of several gyms that have closed due to the coronavirus pandemic. (30 Minute Hit photo)

North Okanagan gyms sweat decision to close

A few facilities closing while others keeping fitness on track

A few gyms have closed shop amid COVID-19, while others aren’t dropping the ball just yet.

So far, GoodLife Fitness, 30 Minute Hit and 9 Round have made the decision to close, while Fitness West, Ladies World, Iron Heart, Kal Fitness, World Health and Fitness and Snap Fitness are remaining open during the pandemic (group classes have been cancelled at Ladies World).

“As much as the decision was hard to take, sudden, and most of all heartbreaking, Ralph and I decided to temporarily close the gym,” said 9Round owner Emily Buisine. “We have been monitoring the situation closely, but in light of the strong recommendations for everyone to apply social distancing to protect ourselves and our peers, we had to take this precautionary measure.”

The temporary closure is especially difficult for the owners as it could affect their status in Canada as their work permit is linked to the business.

“I love my employees, and my members and it’s heartbreaking for me to know that in order to protect everyone we had to close,” said Emily, adding that members have access to a website portal for daily at-home workouts.

Owner of Vernon’s 30 Minute Hit, Kristi Bieber, says the ladies-only facility will be closed across Canada for two weeks. But in the meantime, the kickboxing gym is giving members Hit at Home, an online training centre.

All GoodLife Fitness clubs are also closed across Canada.

But so far, only a few have made the decision to close shop.

“We’re staying open until someone tells us not to,” said a worker at Snap Fitness, noting that the Okanagan Landing facility never sees 50 people at a time. The province has banned all events of 50 people or more.

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