New Orleans Joins Other Cities in Vaccination Requirements for Gyms

Effective Aug. 16, New Orleans began requiring that anyone over the age of 12 entering indoor venues, including health clubs, show proof of vaccination against COVID-19 or a negative PCR test within 72 hours of access, according to an announcement from the New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell.

The requirement applies to employees and customers at gyms, indoor dining and bars, indoor entertainment and large outdoor events.

To prove vaccination status, individuals can use the LA Wallet app; an original, digital photograph, or photocopy of CDC vaccination cards (both sides); or an official vaccine record issued by another state, foreign nation or the World Health Organization.

Also on Aug. 16, New York City began mandating proof of at least one COVID-19 vaccine shot for employees and customers at indoor venues, including health clubs.

Beginning Aug. 20, San Francisco will require proof of full vaccination for indoor venues, including gyms. Employers are allowed two months before they must verify their employees’ vaccination status.

Last week, the Los Angeles City Council unanimously voted to draft a mandate requiring vaccinations for anyone entering indoor venues, including gyms. The council will then vote to approve.

Even though vaccinations haven’t yet been required in Washington, DC, for access to indoor venues, at least one health club chain there has joined several others across the country (including Equinox and SoulCycle) in requiring that members and staff be vaccinated to enter the premises.

VIDA Fitness originally petitioned Mayor Muriel Bowser to require proof of vaccination to enter fitness facilities in the District as an alternative to the mandatory mask policy, according to communication sent to members by VIDA Fitness last week.  

In the interim, VIDA Fitness will require proof of vaccination for entry to its six locations once the company is able to integrate vaccination confirmation status into its check-in process. More than 98 percent of VIDA members are vaccinated, according to a member survey by the company.

Previously, the DC Fitness Alliance had asked the mayor to waive the mask mandate for health clubs and studios if the businesses implemented vaccination requirements. The mayor said no to the request.