Contact tracing by the Dept. of Health has uncovered a total of 17 cases to-date involving two O‘ahu commercial gym facilities. DOH says cases in both gyms are linked to one person who participated in exercise classes at both.
State Epidemiologist Dr. Sarah Park said, “By their very nature, gyms that operate in closed spaces with poor ventilation and without physical distancing can be breeding grounds for all kinds of infections, including coronavirus. It is imperative that all gyms follow the safe practices required by state and county governments. These include proper physical distancing in work-out areas and in group classes, wearing of masks at all times, consistent and thorough disinfection of equipment and all surfaces.” Furthermore, she said, “It’s important for everyone to stay home if they are ill and not go to work or public areas.”
State Health Director Bruce Anderson commented, “We encourage everyone to exercise regularly, and going to the gym is a good way to maintain both physical and mental health. However, it is critically important that safe practices are followed and that the gym is well-ventilated. Individuals at a gym are often breathing hard while exercising, which puts them and those around them at increased risk.” COVID is transmitted from person-to-person through aerosols and droplets associated with breathing, coughing and sneezing. “Perhaps most important is to stay home if you are feeling ill. Don’t try to sweat it out.” said Anderson.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers information for safety in gyms and for their patrons: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/personal-social-activities.html#gyms