ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – It is the first week back for fitness classes across the state after Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham announced they could resume at limited capacity. So what does a socially distanced fitness class look like? Meghan Pflepsen Zender taught her first in-person barre class Tuesday evening since mid-March.
At Mindful Movement and Wellness in northeast Albuquerque, things look a little different now. They are taking temperatures, giving out hand sanitizer, cleaning between classes, and requiring masks. “I am just excited to see everybody,” Pflepsen Zender said. “It has been hard to have that community go away so quickly.”
While they moved classes online amid the pandemic, they went from 80 members down to 30, getting two back since reopening. “It was quite a hit, so I am going to be offering some specials to get people back in the studio,” Pflepsen Zender said.
Republiq gym also resumed classes this week. With only 25% capacity. Owner Reece Killebrew said they are limiting class sizes to 18, filling up on a first come first serve basis. “What we did for our classes is created everything so it is six feet apart,” Killebrew said. “There is no sharing equipment, and then we enforce the mask policy. We have created policies where our members wipe equipment down before and after as well as staff cleaning throughout the day.”
While the gym was open previously, he said it is the group classes that drive their business. They lost 200 of their 700 memberships. “It really hurt,” Killebrew said. “Our members are here for the classes, our members are super happy.”
Pflepsen Zender said she made it through by taking out a small business loan and applying for grants ready to build her business back. “I am thankful I did not have to close back down permanently, but it is definitely an uphill battle getting back to where I was,” Pflepsen Zender.
Mindful Movement and Wellness said they are going to also keep classes online throughout the rest of the year to reach people who may not be comfortable coming back in person.