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Fitness centers making changes to follow new rules in preparation for reopening Friday


SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – With the governor’s stay at home order set to expire Friday and a new order going into effect allowing more businesses to reopen with certain restrictions, many local restaurants and fitness centers are getting ready to welcome customers back.

Plex Fitness on Meriwether Road in South Shreveport is one of the many fitness centers set to reopen on Friday in Louisiana.

“This place is usually active with people running everywhere, things going on. It’s going to be a big change for us, but I can’t wait for Friday to get here,” said Plex Fitness owner Ken Meeks.

“Folks in the community rely on us for their health, their fitness, and their wellness. We are a way of helping to cope and deal with the stresses of life and this situation is no different,” said General Manager Doug Mercado.

Plex Fitness is making some changes to follow social distancing and occupancy guidelines. The fitness center has more than a thousand active members. They will reopen at 25 percent capacity.

“We’re looking at about 85 to 90 people at any given time even with the social distancing rules, we’re almost about 90,000 square feet here, so there is ample room for people to spread out and we’re going to be putting equipment in areas of the gym that didn’t normally have the equipment.”

All staff will be using Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and equipment will be cleaned more often during the day and after every use.

“This is a period of transition and we are really asking for some patience from members and the community to help during this transition phase. We’re all learning on the fly. We’re all trying to figure out the best move forward while keeping everybody safe and healthy.”

Mercado says staying fit during this time is helping a lot of people relieve stress.

“Fitness helps you relieve stress, it helps you keep your body ready to fight off any illnesses that are coming up and it’s a great way to make sure you are putting your best foot forward.”

Plex Fitness has canceled childcare and all group classes to keep everyone safe.

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