On June 4, Governor John Bel Edwards issued Proclamation No. 74 JBE 2020, moving the state into Phase Two of “Resilient Louisiana,” the Governor’s plan to re-open businesses and public spaces previously closed to limit the spread of the coronavirus.
In Phase Two, gyms and fitness centers, including yoga studios, are now permitted to operate at up to 50 percent of total occupancy as determined by the State Fire Marshal. This is an increase from the 25 percent capacity limitation in effect during Phase One.
Further, the City of New Orleans, which is operating under its own re-opening plan, moved into Phase Two effective June 13. New Orleans yoga facilities are now also permitted to open at 50 percent capacity. Moreover, group classes in New Orleans facilities, which were previously not allowed, may resume at 50 percent capacity with no physical contact.
Under Proclamation No. 74, gyms and fitness centers, including yoga studios, must abide by the following conditions:
- All employees and owners must maintain moderate social distancing (six feet) to the extent possible between themselves and members of the public, and wear face coverings at all times if interacting with the public.
- Waiting rooms, lobbies, or other areas where members of the public may congregate (except for bathrooms) must be closed to the public. Members of the public should be required to wait outside while maintaining social distancing, or in vehicles.
- Business should follow the applicable guidance from the State Fire Marshal (published at opensafely.la.gov) and the Louisiana Department of Health regarding sanitization and disinfection.
Further, on June 1, the State Fire Marshal published updated Phase Two guidance for fitness centers, which explicitly applies to yoga classes. Yoga businesses are encouraged to review these guidelines carefully. New Orleans yoga businesses and providers should also review the City of New Orleans Health Department’s Guidelines for COVID-19 Reopening Phase Two containing updated directives for residents and businesses, including specific requirements for gyms and fitness centers (and yoga studios) regarding social distancing, sanitation, and face coverings.
While Louisiana is moving forward with Phase Two re-opening, the statewide public health emergency remains in place. Under Governor Edwards’ Proclamation 74, during Phase Two, Louisiana residents are directed to avoid groups that do not allow for social distancing. Residents are also strongly encouraged to wear masks or face coverings if interacting with others outside their households, stay home and isolate if experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, wash hands frequently, and maintain social distancing.
We recognize that adherence to social distancing, sanitation, protective equipment, maximum occupancy, and other requirements may be a challenge for some yoga businesses. To support our members, Yoga Alliance has issued Best Practice Recommendations for yoga schools, businesses, and professionals to support individual efforts to operate in a way that prioritizes and protects the health and safety of our communities.
We strongly recommend that each business develop a plan for how it will implement measures to mitigate COVID-19 exposure and spread, and consult with its legal counsel and insurance provider.
We are continuing to monitor COVID-19 restrictions and moves to re-open businesses in Louisiana and across the United States. We will continue to develop resources for our members which are available on our COVID-19 resource site.
Reach out to us with feedback, questions, or concerns at 1-888-921-9642 (YOGA) or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for the work that you do for your communities—always, and especially now in these difficult times.
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