HOBOKEN - In an effort to inject some adrenaline into the local fitness industry, Hoboken is opening up outdoor space for area gyms to resume workouts.

Mayor Ravi Bhalla signed an executive order Wednesday, stating that owners or managers of fitness centers with a license to operate in the City of Hoboken can now apply to host outdoor classes of up to 15 people, with strict social distancing guidelines of at least six feet between each participant at all times.

“Our gyms and fitness clubs have been hard hit during COVID-19,” said Mayor Bhalla. “We recognize the major challenges faced during a gradual re-opening with indoor facilities not always having the room for social distancing or capability to reduce capacity. Allocating space for outdoor classes provides an added option for safe and socially distanced workouts that makes the best possible use of our public space.”

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Gyms, fitness and yoga centers have been closed in Hoboken since mid March, as the City's sweeping COVID-19 plan came into effect.

“We think allowing businesses to utilize public space to host outdoor fitness classes is an excellent first step towards re-opening while also promoting public health and wellbeing,” said Patrick Franco, owner of the Hudson Yoga Project. “Addiction, depression, and other mental health issues have all been proven to be reduced with physical activity. Through this initial role out, the Hudson Yoga Project can provide a roadmap of how safe and responsible interactions can be sustained within the fitness community.”

Clubs may apply to utilize outdoor space in certain city fields and parks by visiting http://www.hobokennj.gov/outdoorfitness. Each application will be reviewed by City staff on a case-by-case basis.

The City is offering the following parks, fields and public spaces for outdoor workouts: Church Square Park basketball court, Elysian Park basketball court, Multi-Service Center rink, 14th Street Viaduct soccer pitch, City Hall Plaza (behind City Hall), 7th and Jackson plaza and lawn, Sinatra Park amphitheater, 1600 Turf Field and concrete area, Maxwell Park pier and lawn, Southwest Park, Mama Johnson field, Sinatra Park field, Stevens Park little league field, Church Square Park turf lawn, Pier A

Furthermore, gymnasiums and fitness clubs may utilize outdoor parking lots for socially distanced workouts—with the permission of the respective property owner.