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By Richard D. Lewis
/ Published June 25, 2020
2nd Lt. Caleb Walker
The Fitness Center at the Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC), Los Angeles Air Force Base is back in business, but it is not business as usual. The fitness center closed down in March, along with most other services, as the base followed public health stay-at-home restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The re-opening is welcome news, with some people reporting less physical activity due mandatory telework. The Fitness Center is well equipped to help members return to fitness routines and have another outlet to help with resiliency.
“We’ve coordinated with LA AFB’s Public Health Emergency Officer to ensure that we could safely reopen our Fitness Center, and we are excited about making this resource available again. Not only is physical fitness a part of our job description as military members, we know fitness can also help with managing stress and overcoming challenges,” said Lt. Col. John Francis, COVID-19 response planner and IMA to the deputy commander, 61st Air Base Group. “It’s appointment only, for military members only, for now.”
All military component ID card-holders can make appointments for one-hour fitness sessions. The place to sign up is LAFSS.com\fitness. There is a link on the site to book an appointment.
Available times are currently limited to Monday through Friday only, from 5:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Weekend and 24/7 access is not available at this time.
“I like it. It’s way easier than I thought,” said Capt. Adianis Matias, AFOSI, Detachment 810, commenting on the new appointment scheduling process.
The locker rooms and restrooms remain closed at this time, so customers have to show up already dressed in workout attire. Also, masks must be worn at all times, and social distancing observed. It’s all part of the “new normal ops” (operations), which no one seemed to mind when we stopped by the fitness center for a visit.
“I think SMC has done a wonderful job of prioritizing health but also understanding that fitness is important too,” said Matias.
The Fitness Center has sanitation protocols in place and is receiving regular cleanings.
Appointments are available for the weight room, aerobics room and outdoor workout facility. The members we met were happy for the opportunity to get back into the fitness center again.
The Fitness Center annex at Fort MacArthur is not available at this time. Installation leadership along with public health experts continue assessments on how and when to safely re-open facilities and services. Precautions are in place to protect personnel and their families, while continuing to provide mission assurance.
For up to date information on Coronavirus, visit the CDC page at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html
For installation updates, visit https://www.losangeles.af.mil/COVID-19/ or