Gold's Gym supports Arnold Schwarzenegger's recent decision to leave one of its fitness facilities over its mask policy, calling it an "important personal decision." The gym, however, says it stands by its decision not to require guests to wear face masks amid the coronavirus pandemic, although mask-wearing is "strongly" encouraged.
In a statement to Wonderwall.com, Gold's Gym President & CEO Adam Zeitsiff said, "We love Arnold and completely respect his decision. We know that where to go and what to do as the country reopens is an important personal decision that everyone must make for themselves."
"For the safety of our members and team members who are comfortable returning to the gym, we've implemented a comprehensive, phased reopening plan with extensive sanitation, safety and physical distancing protocols in accordance with federal, state and local regulations. In accordance with Los Angeles County guidelines, at Gold's Gym Venice members are required to wear face masks when entering and exiting the gym," the statement continued. "All team members are required to wear gloves and face masks as part of these protocols, and while we don't require for members to wear face masks during their workout, we absolutely strongly encourage it."
For years, Arnold, 72, has worked out at Gold's Gym in Venice, California, which is arguably the most famous gym in the world, particularly given the number of professional bodybuilders that work out there.
On June 16, TMZ reported that the "Terminator" star went to the Venice Gold's for a morning workout on one of the first days that gyms were able to reopen amid the coronavirus pandemic.
While Arnold was wearing a mask upon entering, he noticed that several gym members were not wearing masks amid their workouts. Front desk staff informed Arnold that people were required to wear masks when they entered and when they were in certain common areas, but the law doesn't require them to wear masks when they're actually working out.
Following the front desk's explanation, Arnold quickly left.
The former California governor "will stay clear of Gold's until people start wearing masks on the floor — or when there's a vaccine," TMZ reported.