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Are gyms back to pre-pandemic levels?

As we continue to emerge from the pandemic, businesses are still figuring out how to navigate the post-COVID-19 world.

KIRO 7 wanted to see what gyms are doing to bring customers back and how it’s working.

KIRO 7 reporter Briseida Holguin went to the 24 Hour Fitness in Bothell to get the inside scoop.

“Are you happy to be back in the gym right now?” Holguin asked.

“OK I gotta tell you I am more than happy to be back to the gym, and you know it’s not just about all the cool equipment that they have, but it’s just like everyone is getting healthy,” said gym member Chris Toledo.

“I would say very excited, it good for everyone to be in a community, and be active and get back to a routine,” said another gym member, Chaz Kerns.

While gyms were shut down due to COVID-19, many people turned to the outdoors, and at-home workouts became very popular.

A Nielsen study shows Seattle saw one of the biggest drops in gym memberships among large U.S. metro areas, and gym memberships are still lagging well behind their pre-pandemic levels.

But, Aaron Miller, general manager with 24 Hour Fitness, begs to differ. He says members are back and business is booming.

“People really needed a place to come back to and have a sense of community,” said Miller.

Miller says of the eight facilities in the Seattle area, four are on limited hours. The other four are back up and running 24 hours, and they see the most volume.

Marvin Kimani, a trainer at the Bothell location, agrees.

“I have a waitlist, but before the pandemic I say maybe 10 clients, right now I’m about 24 clients, so way more ready to get in shape now,” said Kimani.

The gym’s group classes have also seen a bump.

“Are you seeing more people sign up for these classes as opposed to before the pandemic?” Holguin asked.

“Every day, every week, yes we are. Our class levels have gone from about 20 to over 45 to 50 people in a class like this,” said Shane Curfman, a BODYPUMP instructor.