Parent company of Club Pilates, Stretch Lab, Pure Barre files lawsuit against Arizona over closure order

Posted at 5:28 PM, Jul 02, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-02 20:28:02-04

PHOENIX — Xponential Fitness, the parent company of Club Pilates, CycleBar, Pure Barre, Row House, Stretch Lab, and Yoga Six, has filed a lawsuit against the state of Arizona and Gov. Doug Ducey in response to an executive order that required gyms and other businesses to pause their operations for a month amid a sustained increase in coronavirus cases.

The lawsuit, which seeks an injunction against the order and requests a jury trial, was filed on Wednesday. It is at least the second lawsuit filed against the state in regard to the order. Mountainside Fitness has also filed a lawsuit. EOS Fitness said in an email to members that it intends to sue as well.

In its lawsuit, Xpoential Fitness said it "recognizes that bold and aggressive action must be taken by the government to contain COVID-19 outbreaks and protect the public," but questions Gov. Ducey's order, referring to it as "arbitrary and ineffective."

"Arizona closed all indoor gymnasiums and fitness studios without considering the voluminous safety precautions that Plaintiffs have adopted and implemented to reopen safely, while at the same time randomly allowing other businesses, such as casinos, tattoo parlors, golf courses and liquor stores, to continue operating virtually unchecked," the lawsuit states.

On Monday, Gov. Ducey issued a new executive order that forced gyms, movie theaters, some bars, water parks, and tube operators in Arizona to "pause" operations within hours until at least July 27, unless rescinded or extended.

Since the order was put in place, some gyms, including Mountainside, Life Time, and some Orangetheory, F45, and Jabz locations have chosen to remain open.

This week, police have issued citations to multiple Mountainside Fitness locations, according to the CEO and those police agencies. The Arizona Department of Liquor Licenses and Control has summarily suspended liquor licenses at two Life Time locations in Phoenix and Scottsdale.

"The governor’s executive order is clear. Gyms and other indoor fitness clubs or centers, regardless of size, shall pause operations until at least July 27," said Patrick Ptak, spokesperson for the Governor's Office, on Tuesday, in response to some gyms that have defied the order. "This is a public health issue, particularly among our younger demographic, and we are looking for cooperation and compliance from our business community in the name of public health. We know this is a sacrifice."

Xponential Fitness said its gyms "are committed to public health, including physical exercise and the benefits it provides. Arizona must adopt a responsible approach, not one that fails to protect the health of its citizens and penalizes responsible business in the process."

It is seeking monetary damages and for the order to be deemed unconstitutional.