DeSantis: Announcement on gym, fitness center reopenings in Florida coming Friday

'I think it's really important that people have access to gyms,' governor says
Woman works out near Biscayne Bay in Miami during coronavirus pandemic
Posted at 1:56 PM, May 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-14 21:44:19-04

DORAL, Fla. — Gyms and fitness centers will soon reopen across the state of Florida, Gov. Ron DeSantis hinted on Thursday.

While announcing in Doral that Miami-Dade and Broward counties will join Phase One of Florida's reopening plan, the governor also said he'll make an announcement on Friday about reopening gyms statewide.

"I think it's really important that people have access to gyms and to different exercise," DeSantis said. "You had certain guidelines that the [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] put out, and they think that gyms were a problem, so that's why they were closed."


Gov. DeSantis says gym announcement is coming

SPECIAL COVERAGE: Coronavirus | The Rebound South Florida | We're Open South Florida

Under Phase One of Florida's reopening plan, gyms and fitness centers throughout the state are closed, with the following exceptions:

  • Gyms and fitness centers that are amenities of hotels which have a capacity of 10 people or less
  • Gyms and fitness centers that are amenities of residential buildings
  • Gyms inside fire or police stations
  • Gyms inside any single-occupant office building

DeSantis said health data shows that many coronavirus-related deaths in people under 65 years of age are tied to obesity, and it's important for people to get exercise.

"This is a virus that, if you're in good shape, you're probably gonna be OK," DeSantis said. "So why would be want to dissuade people from going to be in shape?"

There are exceptions to the governor's obesity claim, of course, including a healthy, fitness-focused Jupiter man with no history of health issues who spent days at Jupiter Medical Center after contracting COVID-19.

"I really thought I was going to die," Mike Mangus told WPTV last month. "I mean, I’ve never felt that close to death before."

Stopping short of providing any specifics on Thursday, DeSantis stressed that proper sanitation will be an important factor once gyms and fitness centers reopen.

"We're gonna have an announcement on that tomorrow," DeSantis said. "Let's tell people to get out, do those things."