NEW YORK - After it was announced on Tuesday that gyms in New York would not be allowed to reopen in Phase Four, roughly 30 owners of small fitness studios formed a coalition to potentially pursue legal action against the state.
“We’ve sent numerous letters to the Governor’s office, and I’ve gotten no response so they’re kind of leaving us no choice,” said Kelvin Gary, the owner of Body Space Fitness.
“An extended shutdown phase Phase Four will ultimately destroy the brick and mortar independent, small boutique salon fitness studios,” said Steve “Coach Fury” Holiner, owner of Speakeasy of Strength in Brooklyn.
Holiner’s gym serves 30-40 people in his neighborhood and he says he believes his studio is a “personal service” and should not be lumped in with big box gyms.
“They’ve been supporting us online,” Holiner said of his customers. “We did take a massive hit obviously, and as they’ve lost their jobs or taking pay cuts, we’ve lost more revenue.”
“At a minimum we just want a seat at the table to educate the people making the decisions on our business because they’re painting us all with one brush,” Gary said.
July 1 will mark a full quarter that gyms have been shuttered by the pandemic, plus they’ve had to pay hundreds of dollars to make the preparations necessary to try to reopen safely and landlords have been varyingly understanding of their predicament.
So far, there has been no indication from the state as to when gyms can reopen.