Health First’s Pro-Health & Fitness Members Grateful to Be Back in the Gym

By  //  June 3, 2020

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variety of tactics used to safeguard the wellness and health of all in the facility

The first-week Health First’s Pro-Health & Fitness Center reopened its doors, Jan Sobel Fredheim had no hesitation going back to the Viera gym. For her, it’s something critical for the body and mind – especially given the stressors that COVID-19 has brought to people’s lives. (Health First image)

BREVARD COUNTY • VIERA, FLORIDA – The first-week Health First’s Pro-Health & Fitness Center reopened its doors, Jan Sobel Fredheim had no hesitation going back to the Viera gym. For her, it’s something critical for the body and mind – especially given the stressors that COVID-19 has brought to people’s lives.

“For people’s mental health, it’s huge that you are open,” the former Brevard science teacher said. “The mask stays on, but the gym is here.”

Jan and many others ventured back to Pro-Health & Fitness after the state permitted it to reopen – with social distancing and other safety precautions in place. On a recent Friday afternoon, such measures designed to protect members and associates were evident – signs that, at least for some time, this is the new normal.

Jon Williams, Director of Pro-Health & Fitness, said a variety of tactics have been deployed to safeguard the wellness and health of all in the facility.

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These include:

■ Markers and signage encouraging people to socially distance, clean their hands frequently and more
■ Staff is constantly rounding the area, cleaning equipment and more
■ There are hand sanitation stations and cleaning supplies for members to disinfect equipment after use throughout the gym
■ Every other cardio machine is blocked off to ensure members maintain a six-foot distance from others
■ Free weights remain open, as long as members socially distance
■ All associates are required to wear masks. Members are not required to wear masks but are highly encouraged to do so.
■ Group fitness classes are suspended for now, per state mandate

Jon said members should rest assured, knowing that Pro-Health & Fitness is hoping to safely return to expanded services when it’s safe to do so. For now, pools are open, and personal training and new membership orientation is available.

“We are following guidelines and recommendations provided by the state,” Jon added. “We look forward to the next step, which will be opening KidFit (childcare services) on June 1.”

For now, members like Jan are satisfied with what’s being done to give people an outlet for activity in the safest way possible.

She also personally sanitizes her hands before and after using free weights, as well as cleaning the weights she uses ­– before and after – as an added precaution. Jan said she’s happy with the gym’s ventilation system, as well as the social distancing measures put in place.

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“It seems respectful, as opposed to restrictive,” she said.

Philip Kellner, a retired member of the military and a Basic Life Support instructor at Health First’s Training Center, also wears a mask when working out.

“I’ll probably continue to do this for some time,” said Philip, adding just because you can’t see COVID-19 doesn’t mean it’s not there – so it’s important to stay vigilant.

“Obviously, it’s easy to fall short on our awareness,” he said.

Life in general is changing after the introduction to this pandemic, Philip noted. We all have to make sure we do our part in protecting ourselves and others. Pro-Health & Fitness’ efforts are following in that sentiment, he said.

“I think it’s appropriate, given the current guidelines,” he said. “This is the best you can do, given these limitations.”

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