Coronavirus: Fraser Health orders indoor gyms, fitness facilities to close

Fraser Health has ordered all indoor gyms and fitness facilities to close immediately, as the coronavirus crisis continues.

The order applies to weight training, gymnastics, and martial arts facilities; yoga and dance studios; and similar facilities.

Fraser Health’s chief medical officer Dr. Martin Lavoie is encouraging the businesses to instead connect with clients through online classes.

Some gyms and fitness facilities were still up and running in the region until last night, he said, though most had already closed on their own.

The health authority had received complaints about some facilities not cleaning properly or not following guidelines on physical distancing.

The order will expire on May 30, though it could be revised or extended.

While B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry has ordered businesses like spas and salons to close to prevent the spread of COVID-19, fitness facilities are allowed to stay open as long as staff and customers follow social-distancing rules.

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Interior Health ordered the closure of fitness facilities in its region on April 2. The health authority later fined an Armstrong, B.C., gym $345 for remaining open.

However, there is no such order in place in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, as long as the businesses follow public-health guidelines.

— With files from Jules Knox

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