FILE - In this Nov. 24, 2020, file photo, Juan Avellan, center, and others wear masks while working out in an indoor class at a Hit Fit SF gym amid the coronavirus outbreak in San Francisco. Health officials in San Francisco and six other Bay Area counties announced Monday, Aug. 2, 2021 that they are reinstating a mask mandate for all indoor setting as COVID-19 infections surge because of the highly contagious delta variant. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File)

Some fitness facilities in Red Deer will require proof of vaccination

Some Red Deer fitness businesses will implement Alberta’s Restrictions Exemption Program on Monday.

In an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19, the Government of Alberta declared a state of public health emergency and announced the program, which requires proof of COVID-19 vaccination, a negative PCR or rapid test result within 72 hours of service or documentation of medical exemption.

Businesses that choose to implement the Restrictions Exemption Program must continue to follow indoor mandatory masking requirements, but can operate without capacity or operating restrictions. There are stricter restrictions for businesses that choose not to implement the program.

Breathing Room Yoga + Psycle will require proof of vaccination for those who come to the studio, the business announced on Facebook Thursday.

“One of our key values is inclusivity. Another is safety. At this time, we need to put an emphasis on the safety part – in the spirit of yoga, we must practise AHIMSA; the act of non harming,” said a post on the business’ Facebook page Thursday.

“We must protect our business, but also our community as a whole. We must choose an approach that does the greatest good for the greatest number of people. We sincerely hope that this approach provides comfort to those who are vaccinated and choose to come to in-person classes.”

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Love Grace Yoga, a Red Deer studio, will also require proof of vaccination for anyone attending in-person classes.

“We could close our doors again to in-person yoga or participate in the Restriction Exemption Program. After being closed for 10 out of 18 months, closing our doors would be devastating for us,” said a post on the Love Grace Yoga Facebook page.

“One of our most important foundations for the past six years has been to be inclusive – come as you are, no matter what, all are welcome. It breaks my heart that for the time being this cannot be the case.”

Orangetheory Fitness Red Deer will require proof of vaccination or a negative PCR or rapid test, along with an authorized piece of government ID, prior to attending a class.

The business will accept proof of a single dose, as long as the dose was given two weeks or more before the time of service, until Oct. 25, Orangetheory Fitness Red Deer said in a Facebook post this past Thursday.

“These measures will be in place for the foreseeable future and we ask for your patience as we transition to this new system over the next few days,” the Facebook post said.

“OTF Canada is working on a solution that will allow members to permit us to notate we have seen proof of vaccination on their account, however, in the interim we would ask that members bring proof of vaccination for every visit to one of these classes.

“For those who are not medically eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, we will accept a medical exemption doctor’s note stating that you should not be vaccinated.”

Not every Red Deer fitness facility will implement the governmen’tsprogram.

Anytime Fitness, in South Red Deer, announced Saturday it will not require proof of vaccination for gym access.

In a Facebook post, the gym said “in order to move forward we will have to implement the restrictions set forth by the Alberta government when operating at (one-third) capacity to protect our members, our team and to do our part in understanding the stress and overload our health-care workers are going through and doing what we can to be safe and prevent the spread.”

For more information on the Restrictions Exemption Program, visit www.alberta.ca/covid-19-public-health-actions.aspx.



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