NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Fitness fanatics in New York City finally returned to their favorite indoor classes Monday, after a year of at-home workouts.

Gyms have been open for months, but classes were off-limits until now, CBS2’s Christina Fan reported.

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After a year of at-home workouts, fitness fanatics in New York City were so pumped to return to indoor classes, nearly every studion Fan visited had a waitlist.

Andreia Gibau from Brooklyn was lucky enough to snag a spot one of four slots in a yoga class, which normally holds 12 people.

Gibau missed the in-person energy.

“At home it’s very quick to do a workout and then 15 minutes in, as soon as you are getting tired, when it’s actually starting to work, you just plop on the couch,” Gibau said.

Classes are only allowed at 33% capacity. Participants must wear masks, undergo a health screening at check-in and provide information for contact tracing.

“It makes such a difference when you’re actually with an instructor, in person, and you feel the energy. You have someone motivating you,” Gibau said.

At Life Time Sky, sessions are spaced out to allow additional time for disinfecting.

COVID VACCINE

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“We have a very strict, enhanced cleaning protocol. So all the equipment is pre-set, sanitized, and at the end of the class it’s sanitized and picked up by Life Time team members,” said Johnny de Triquet, who works at the gym.

The fight to reopen hasn’t been easy. Boutique Fitness studios were one of the last businesses still shut down in March, whereas gyms were allowed to reopen back in September.

A day after Katia Pryce with DanceBody staged a massive rally last Tuesday, the governor finally relented.

CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC

“This is not just an open free for all for people. You can’t just walk in whenever you want. There is a class time. It’s staggered, it’s structured,” Pryce said.

Fitness instructors say the importance of reopening is not just about restoring a financial lifely for them.

“I think so many people have been sequestered and alone, and it’s so poor for your mental health,” Pryce said.

Exercising together, in person. It’s a critical stepping stone physically and mentally as we come out of this pandemic.

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CBS2’s Christina Fan contributed to this report.

CBSNewYork Team