OLYMPIA — Gyms are now able to reopen in Chelan and Douglas counties under COVID-19 safety guidelines.

Gov. Jay Inslee updated guidance Friday for indoor fitness and training facilities for counties in a modified Phase 1 under Washington’s Safe Start reopening plan. Chelan and Douglas counties are in Phase 1.5.

Gyms and training facilities must adhere to Phase 2 requirements.

Gyms, yoga studios, and indoor sports facilities can open for personal fitness and training, group fitness classes, and practice for certain low- and medium-contact sports, a news release from the governor’s office said Friday.

Occupancy will be limited to ensure proper physical distancing and masks will be required. The changes are effective immediately.

“As the seasons change and outdoor options for fitness and training becomes less accessible, it is important for Washingtonians across our state to have access to facilities where they can safely exercise indoors,” Inslee said.

“I want to thank the many facilities around the state, and the fitness instructors that have been operating and teaching safely under this guidance.”

Under the Phase 2 guidelines, which in this instance apply to Phase 1.5 counties, training facilities are required to provide 300 square feet of distancing per person. For large gyms, occupancy is limited to 25% of the facility’s occupancy limit.

Blair McHaney, president of WORX gym, helped lead the Washington Fitness Alliance in its push to reopen gyms.

“We’re elated that they really listened to us for these counties in Phase 1.5 and recognized that fitness really got left behind in these counties,” McHaney said Friday.

Worx will reopen at 5 a.m. Monday at 25% capacity, he said.

Pete O’Cain: 664-7152

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