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Gyms, pools reopen, fall sports move forward under Whitmer’s Executive Orders

Posted by: jgomori Posted date: September 4, 2020

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced the reopening of gyms and pools at reduced capacity with COVID-19 safety restrictions and gave the go ahead for fall sports under two Executive Orders. However, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services warned against contact sports.

Effective Sept. 9, Executive Orders 175 and 176 allow for organized sports practices and competitions with athletes wearing masks and spectator limits. Outdoor organized sporting events are limited to 100 individuals including participants and fans. Indoor sporting events are limited to two guests per player. While athletes are not subject to social distancing while playing, they must wear a facial covering, except when swimming, and maintain six feet distance from each other when possible.

“Individuals can now choose whether or not to play organized sports, and if they do choose to play, this order requires strict safety measures to reduce risk,” said Chief Medical Executive and MDHHS Chief Deputy for Health Dr. Joneigh Khaldun in a press release. “However, we know of 30 reported outbreaks involving athletic teams and facilities in August. Based on current data, contact sports create a high risk of COVID-19 transmission and MDHHS strongly recommends against participating in them at this time.” 

Sports and exercise facilities, including gymnasiums, fitness centers, recreation centers, bowling alleys, roller rinks, ice rinks, and indoor pools can open with 25 percent capacity as of Sept. 9.  Bowling alleys and ice rinks are limited to organized sports events. Strict protocols include mask use at all times, except when swimming,  and 6-foot distancing between workout stations and individuals participating in classes. Patrons must provide their name for contact tracing purposes. Saunas and hot tubs remain closed.

For further details, please click on the links to the Executive Orders below.

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