Gyms across New York state – with the exception of New York City – were given the green light to reopen on Monday and one gym owner argues that the threat of a class-action lawsuit is what put on the pressure on Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
“The only reason why [Cuomo] announced he was going to open gyms is because on Thursday, we were supposed to have the judge review the case and there was no way he was going to win,” Thousand Island Fitness owner Gary Bass told FOX Business’ Stuart Varney.
“So he was staring down the barrel of this class-action lawsuit, knew he couldn’t win and he knew he was going to look like a fool.”
The New York Fitness Coalition originally began collecting funding online to start the lawsuit. Cuomo announced all gyms were allowed to reopen Aug. 24 but city gyms are still on hold until Sept. 2.
Bass said his gym, based in Alexandria Bay, will be able to survive but not turn out a normal profit, as he expects fewer members to return.
“I can't see it all coming back,” he said. “A lot of people have probably found ways to adapt to working out at home. However, anybody that's ever used a gym knows that you're not going to get the same quality of a workout.”
In contrast, Bass said he doesn’t see how bigger gyms with larger overhead costs will be able to survive with capacity restrictions and strict guidelines in place.
“It's going to be difficult,” he said. “I think that for the most part, anybody that wants to work out in the gym will just use it as another challenge and adapt to it. But there are some people that that won't come back because of the masks."