MENTOR, Ohio (WOIO) - If you’ve been itching to get back to the gym, you might be able to get there even earlier than expected. On Wednesday, a judge ruled that gyms can reopen before the governor’s order expires and not be punished for it.
Frederick’s Fit Factory in Mentor was one of 35 gyms in that lawsuit. They said they are thrilled with the judge’s decision, but they are not rushing to reopen because they want to make sure that it’s safe for their members.
“Equipment was kind of scattered all over the gym so this way we kind of just opened it up,” said Kyleigh Frederick, co-owner of Frederick’s Fit Factory.
Kyleigh and Bryce Frederick own Frederick’s Fit Factory in Mentor.
They decided to join in on the lawsuit filed against Dr. Amy Acton and the Ohio Department of Health, not for financial gain but because they believed gyms were essential businesses.
“We just wanted to band together with everybody and jump on board to support something that we believed heavily in,” explained Bryce.
On Wednesday, a judge ruled in their favor, blocking state and county health officials from taking any action against gyms that reopen, as long as they follow the safety regulations.
“I’m not gonna lie I am kind of surprised but overly just grateful honestly,” said Kyleigh.
Some gyms in the area have already announced they’re reopening as early as Thursday.
“I don’t put it past them because the financial hardship certainly is a big factor in that I just hope their best interest is in their clientele and not just in their monetary gain,” Kyleigh said.
The Fredericks won’t be opening until June 1.
Some other changes: no congregating in the lobby, mandatory handwashing upon arrival and they’ve reduced their classes from 18 to 12. People also have to sign up online to attend.
“I know one of the precautions is to be able to track people that have been infected so we have rosters of our entire class so we can see who is in class with each person," Bryce said.
The couple says they wouldn’t be surprised if other local businesses follow in their footsteps and file similar lawsuits.
“It’s hard to tell with this being the first ruling in favor of small businesses what this outreach is gonna end up looking like cause this could be every industry, this could be huge so it’s hard to see what industries will do that but I definitely expect some people will probably file a suit,” Bryce said.