Changes for group fitness at Sanford Wellness Center

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in a lot of changes for people everywhere, and that includes changes at local fitness facilities.

Meghan Glover has been a group fitness instructor for several years at the Sanford Wellness Center.
But since the COVID-19 pandemic started, group fitness hasn’t been the same.

“Honestly, it seems a little empty. I, you know, being an instructor with a class where I used to have, you know, 20 people, some of my classes I had well more than that, say in a Zumba class,” Glover said.

Now her class sizes have been cut in half.

“We’re still around 50% volumes that are coming in compared to this time last year. So I would say it’s impacted us greatly,” Mike Davidson said.

Manager of Sanford Wellness on Tea Ellis, Mike Davidson says not only has attendance changed, but also the number of group fitness classes being offered.

“Top of my head between the both facilities, we had 100, about 150 classes we offered between land and water. And I would probably say we’re maybe three or four at the Tea Ellis location and maybe three or four or five at Oxbow,” Davidson said.

For the few classes currently offered, a lot of cleaning and precautionary steps are being taken. Participants are even spaced out more, with everyone 10 feet apart.

“That is a recommendation we get from IHRSA and along with some other national exercise federations. Basically, you know, when you’re exercising, you’re breathing hard, you’re exhaling heavier. So just to kind of protect you against those droplets,” Davidson said.

As more members return, he says more classes may become available.

“They’ve been filling up more at the Oxbow location, the Tea Ellis location hasn’t filled up yet. And as those classes fill up, we’ll look at adding more classes,” Davidson said.

As more members return, Glover wants them to know safety is a priority.

“I want them to do what’s best for them and what they feel is right for them, but to not feel too scared in terms of coming back to classes, that we are taking so many precautions for their safety, as well as our own,” Glover said.

Davidson says most classes are on a first come first serve basis, with an early sign-up available for some. To see the full schedule, click here.