VESTAVIA HILLS, Ala. (WBRC) - Community gyms and fitness clubs are looking to lawmakers for help during this pandemic.
They’re hoping a new bill will offer a lifeline to tens of thousands of fitness centers across the country.
Owner of Orangetheory fitness, Lauren Goldasich, said gyms and fitness centers were some of the first businesses to close because of the pandemic and were the last to reopen. She said many remain closed; some for good, which is why she says the “GYMS Act” is needed.
Goldasich said nearly 7,000 gyms have permanently closed across the country, accounting for more than 1.4 million jobs lost. Goldasich said so far, the federal government has done nothing specifically to support health clubs and community gyms and fitness studios need tailored support through the GYMS Act, much like the support the entertainment and restaurant industries received.
“It’s designed to support those fitness facilities that have been devastated again by the closures and the continued mandates that are not allowing the studios and the fitness facilities to operate at full capacity and so that is of course affecting your local gym therefore affecting the community,” Goldasich.
Goldasich said federal relief programs like the Paycheck Protection Program don’t go far enough to help struggling gyms.
For more information about the GYMS Act, and how you can help, visit www.gymscoalition.org.