I knew things were tough for gyms, but it really hit home when I was searching for an incline bench at Academy this weekend. The pickings were slim to none — more like none — and the friendly employee couldn’t tell me when the island store would have a better selection.
The pandemic had inspired consumers to build their own home gyms.
It had me wondering whether gyms would ever recover from COVID-19.
Just today, 24 Hour Fitness announced it had filed for bankruptcy and expects to secure about $250 million in debtor-in-possession financing. And it plans to close its League City and Friendswood gyms among 12 in Texas, according to reports.
The League City gym is at 2765 Interstate 45, and Friendswood's at 130 W. Parkwood Ave.
“If it were not for COVID-19 and its devastating effects, we would not be filing for Chapter 11,” CEO Tony Ueber said. “With that said, we intend to use the process to strengthen the future of 24 Hour Fitness for our team and club members, as well as our stakeholders.”
I like gyms. I think they help members stay focused and the county has some good ones. But even before the pandemic, I began working out at home because it was quick and fit my schedule. Still, I miss the camaraderie and the friends I've met at gyms.
Have you returned to the gym? Do you plan to? Where do you work out? And do you think gyms will see a return of clients?