ITHACA, N.Y.—Island Health & Fitness became the latest local business to introduce a COVID-19 vaccination requirement, and the first local gym to do so, as the idea of vaccination requirements begins to extend beyond bars (and one local bookstore, Odyssey).

While personal fitness locations were not a major vector of infection during the earlier parts of the pandemic, the Delta variant’s prevalence and contagiousness has made contracting the virus increasingly likely even when fully vaccinated.

“To continue our focus on safety within our facilities, we are requiring all of our members and staff to be vaccinated for COVID-19,” said Steve Brandt, the general manager of Island Health & Fitness. “In addition, we recently transformed our facilities with upgrades focused on health and safety. Improvements include new, easily sanitized rubber flooring, fresh air ventilation and filtering, extra cleaning crews and staff.”