Small Huntsville gym happy to reopen to loyal members

Published: May. 12, 2020 at 7:31 AM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - People across the Tennessee Valley are once again getting a workout in after Gov. Ivey loosened her safer at home order to allow gyms to reopen.

Deven Dehnel and his co-owner/wife, Heidi, own Core Strength and Performance in Huntsville. It’s a smaller gym that focuses on strength training with classes of six people or less.

Dehnel said they reopened on Monday with new rules, starting with requiring everyone to wash their hands when they first get to the gym.

Dehnel is also having people clean equipment in between sets and make sure the entire facility gets a deep clean three times a day.

Dehnel said this is a small price to pay so they can reopen. He said all of his members are okay with the extra cleaning, as well, especially so they can get back to their gym.

“I think everybody is kind of relieved that they can be outside, at least doing something,” he said. “Fitness, whether it's outside or in a gym, is good for your brain, it’s good for your body.”

Dehnel said this is a tight knit group of people, so it’s easy to hold everyone accountable. He’s just looking forward to giving back to his members who showed loyalty while they were shut down.

“The level of gratitude that we have for the people who workout here is unreal, because there is a real possibility we could have gone out of business,” Dehnel said. “We’re small, every member really matters here, and they showed it by sticking by us and we’ll forever be grateful for that.”

He said since they announced they were going to reopen classes have been full, with even more business than before.

“I just think people are ready to be outside a little,” Dehnel said. “They just want to move and they want some interaction.”

At the same time, Dehnel is making sure his clients know COVID-19 is a real threat and he doesn’t want them to come in if they’re sick, no matter how much they miss the gym.

“If you feel like you’re not feeling you best stay home, I’ll write you a program, we’ll do whatever we can to help you but to be honest with yourself the workout is not that important," he said.

For those who are not quite comfortable yet with returning to the gym, Dehnel is working with them so they still have planned workouts while they’re away.

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