Grants Pass Family YMCA starts outdoor fitness classes

GRANTS PASS, Or.- Right now, indoor fitness centers are closed under the governor’s current COVID-19 restrictions. But the Grants Pass Family YMCA set up a new space to follow those guidelines, while still offering fitness classes.

Today is the first day the center is offering outdoor classes but it says they’ve been preparing for this for weeks.

Under the governor’s restrictions outdoor recreation is allowed with a limit of 50 people. So the YMCA set up a large outdoor event tent… To host classes.

Its leadership says since the pandemic started, many people have abandoned important healthy habits while stuck at home, so its important to get moving again.

“You need to exercise. That is part of being well and getting well so if you don’t exercise and you don’t eat right, and there are so many people that are just sitting at home and eating,” said Rita Kurz, the YMCA’s Health and Fitness Director.

She says the “Y” didn’t offer this during the first major shutdown in the spring. But they are now ready with the tent, speakers, and even heaters. She says even though they’ve only had two classes today, people told her they enjoyed the outdoor element and will be coming back for more.

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Grace Smith is co-anchor for NBC5 News at 6. The Chicago native is a recent graduate of University of Miami with a Communication Honors degree specializing in Broadcast Journalism. She minored in Creative Writing and focused her senior thesis on social media usage and engagement. During her time at the University of Miami, she anchored multiple award-winning student television programs, covering everything from music festivals to the Super Bowl. Though she loved Miami's beaches, she's thrilled to be in the Pacific Northwest where she can experience all four seasons and have a real Christmas tree! When she’s not at work, you can find Grace glued to any television showing live sports (especially if it's the Chicago Bears) or attempting a new recipe as she learns to cook.
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