Gov. Bill Lee to allow gyms to reopen in 89 counties on Friday


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Tennessee Governor Bill Lee and the Economic Recovery Group announced Tuesday that gyms in 89 of Tennessee’s 95 counties will be allowed to reopen Friday, May 1 with guidelines put in place.

The counties excluded are those with locally-run health departments including Davidson, Shelby, Madison, Hamilton, Knox, and Sullivan Counties.

“Exercise is incredibly important for the physical and mental health of our population, and we want Tennesseans to have access to safe environments where they can exercise as appropriate,” said Tennessee Governor Bill Lee. “These guidelines outline best practices in keeping with recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and health experts for gyms to reopen in a way that will keep their employees and customers safe.”

Some of the guidelines put in place include restricting access to staffed hours only, allowing only 50 percent capacity, social distancing, and regular disinfection every 2 hours.

Showers, locker rooms, lockers, swimming pools, hot tubs, saunas, recreational water or spa facilities, basketball courts, racquetball courts, group/team sports facilities, youth/adult team leagues and sports, water fountains, common areas, break rooms, check-in counters, and self-service stations will remain closed under the guidelines until further notice.

Group fitness classes can operate but social distancing and capacity restrictions must be adhered to, including no sharing of equipment or person-to-person contact.

Guidance provided to gyms includes recommendations including temperature checks for every customer, questioning customers, keeping doors and windows open for improved ventilation, posting signs encouraging distancing, requiring wash and sanitizing of hands upon entering and leaving, requiring customers to clean equipment before and after use, encouraging use of one piece of equipment at a time, workout length limits, and recommending those more vulnerable or at risk for COVID-19 not to use the facility or take extra precautions.

Employees of gyms should work from home as much as possible, be screened before reporting to work, wear face coverings and personal protective equipment, be provided a sanitation station, and must practice social distancing as much as possible.

The full guidelines are posted online here.

Stay with News 2 for continuing coverage of the COVID-19 Pandemic.


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