Jewish community centers throughout South Florida have reopened their fitness centers with safety measures in place after being closed for a few months due to COVID-19.
Representatives from the JCCs said they have been following CDC, Florida Department of Health and local authority recommendations since reopening their fitness centers.
The JCCs are taking temperature checks for everyone who comes into the buildings, having hand sanitizing stations throughout their gyms, requiring people to wear masks, closing the fitness centers at various times throughout the day to sanitize all equipment, reconfiguring equipment to allow appropriate social distancing, requiring people to bring towels and more.
Ralph Ramirez, director of fitness for the David Posnack JCC in Davie, which reopened its fitness center on May 28, said, “The gym was a crucial part of reopening because members needed to get back to some semblance of normalcy and a way to reduce stress.”
“Once gyms were given the green light to reopen, our team immediately went to work to ensure that our facility would be up to par with all health guidelines,” Ramirez continued.
Ramirez said the members have felt safe and they are taking all precautions.
“Our members are very grateful to be able to use the facilities in a safe manner,” he said. “They have followed all of the safety requirements and are happy to be back at the JCC.”
Visit dpjcc.org/sports-wellness/fitness/, or contact Ramirez at [email protected] for more information, including hours of operation and a full list of safety regulations.
The Michael-Ann Russell JCC in North Miami Beach reopened its fitness center on June 8.
Anthony Slayen, the MAR-JCC’s program director of sports and fitness, said, “We believe we keep our fitness center safe.”
“One of the key factors is we limit the fitness center for 18 people per session, and we close every 45 minutes to clean the fitness center.”
Slayen believes the reopening is important and gives people the opportunity to feel as safe as they can at the fitness center.
The fitness center is only opened for JCC members at this time.
Scott Blumberg of Aventura, a member of the JCC who said he works out there seven days a week, noted, “I feel very comfortable going there and being six feet apart from other people.”
“They keep the center remarkably clean,” he continued. “I feel safe there.”
Visit marjcc.org/fitness/ or contact Slayen at [email protected] for information on the fitness center’s hours of operation and full list of safety measures.
The Galbut Family Miami Beach JCC’s fitness center also reopened on June 8 after being closed for three months.
Paul Frishman, the Miami Beach JCC’s chief executive officer, said, “There are many of our JCC members that rely on our Miami Beach JCC state-of-the-art fitness facilities and organized group fitness programs for their overall wellness and health needs.”
“We are proud that we have been able to accommodate so many in our community within these strict required safety guidelines and protocols which also include health screenings, health questionnaires and temperature checks upon entry into the JCC,” he continued.
Frishman said the membership has been extremely appreciative of all the extra safety steps and protocols that the JCC has put into place. He also said the membership has been extremely supportive of all that the institution is doing to create the most positive environment for their exercise.
“Of particular note is the outdoor and virtual options developed for our popular group fitness classes that our members continue to be engaged in,” he said. “Our instructors and staff team have truly been amazing in pivoting to new methods of delivering outstanding fitness programming which our MBJCC members have come to expect. In total there are 34 options of these classes weekly.”
Information on the JCC’s safety measure can be found at https://issuu.com/arounds/docs/covid19_policies_and_procedures.
Visit mbjcc.org/health-wellness/ for more information, including hours of operation.
The Adolph & Rose Levis JCC in Boca Raton reopened its Sports & Wellness Center with reduced hours on July 1.
“We have received overwhelming positive feedback about how happy our members are to be back with us, working out in a clean and safe fitness center, and we are so glad to have them back.” said Randy Colman, the Levis JCC’s executive director.
Visit levisjcc.org/wellness/swreopen/ for more information.
To work out at the Dave and Mary Alper JCC’s fitness center in Miami, attendees must be members and make an appointment 24 hours in advance on the Mindbody app.
Yolanda Perez, the Alper JCC’s community engagement director, explained the importance of reopening the gym even in the midst of a pandemic.
“While we’ve been running our group exercise classes online, our members had been asking and waiting for our fitness center to open to use weights and other equipment they did not have access to at home,” she said. “As long as we felt we could open safely, we were happy to be able to accommodate our members.”
Lori Behren of Miami, a JCC member who said she works out at there center five to six times a week, noted, “I am very pleased with all of the new safety measures the JCC has implemented since it reopened.”
Visit alperjcc.org/sports-and-fitness/fitness-center/ for more information.
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