What Minnesota's 4-week pause means for gyms

Dumbbells and weights are lined up on a shelf. Photo: Kira Hofmann/dpa-Zentralbild/dpa (Photo by Kira Hofmann/picture alliance via Getty Images) ((Photo by Kira Hofmann/picture alliance via Getty Images) / Getty Images)

Gyms and fitness centers throughout Minnesota will be shut down for four weeks under new restrictions from Minnesota Governor Tim Walz due to the surging amount of COVID-19 cases statewide. 

Gov. Tim Walz announced the new four-week restrictions Wednesday night. 

The new order will go into place at 11:59 p.m. Friday. The Governor's Office is calling it a Four-Week Dial Back. 


Area managers of gyms are expressing frustration with the new restrictions. 

"I am just completely disappointed that this is happening to gyms, all gyms, even bigger footprint ones because health and fitness is so important," said Cindy Wagner, an Anytime Fitness manager.

The state of Minnesota released this graphic Wednesday to show what businesses and activities will be dialed back as COVID-19 cases surge statewide. (Office of the Governor of Minnesota)

"This is just unfair and unjust approach to solving a problem that is real," said Bahram Akradi, the CEO of Life Time Fitness. 

Citing Life Time's national data, he pointed to just 62 reported cases since May which the company says equates to a rate of .00004 percent. They say they have also done contact tracing and have yet to identify a single case that originated in their clubs. 

According to MDH data, there have been 48 outbreaks and 747 cases statewide linked to gyms.

In Minnesota, 4,000 Life Time employees will be furloughed.