Gyms, fitness centres reopen with new rules

Fitness instructor Joel Adams warms down on the treadmill at Life Fitness gym, Arima. - Angelo M. Marcelle
Fitness instructor Joel Adams warms down on the treadmill at Life Fitness gym, Arima. - Angelo M. Marcelle

Gyms and fitness centres reopened on Monday and clients can expect a few changes. Like everywhere else, gyms are adjusting to the new normal guidelines set out by the Ministry of Health for public spaces to curb the spread of covid19.

D Dial Fitness Club in Arima was prepared to receive clients on Monday, with all physical distancing and health protocols in place. Manager Alisha Blackwell said despite having to operate at half capacity, limiting the gym to ten people at a time, there was a great turnout on Monday for the reopening. Blackwell explained that in addition to the standard masks and sanitiser on entry, there were other protocols gyms had to adhere to.

Clients’ temperatures will now be taken on entry with a thermo gun and the changing room is sanitised every half-hour. Staff sanitise the machines between use and there are also cleaning materials available for clients to sanitise the machines themselves when they are finished with them.

Hans Kappel, 19, and Odunmbku Somorin, 17, work out under the eye of fitness instructor Alejandro Figueroa at D Dial Fitness gym, Arima. - Angelo M. Marcelle

Clients must also take their own full-length towel to use on the machines, as stipulated by the ministry.

Hand sanitisers are also available on every floor. All first-time clients at the gym are also required to fill out a covid19 screening questionnaire. On the form is a message that reads, “Failure or refusal to complete this form will result in denial of entry on compound.” The ministry's new normal guidelines for gyms and fitness centres state owners must have a register of their clients, including name, address, telephone contact and e-mail address. Owners must also maintain daily signing of the register.

D Dial Fitness did not leave their clients to fend for themselves while on lockdown. While the stay-at-home order was in effect, workout videos were being posted to the gym's social media pages, with tips on how to use everyday household items to workout. The videos were conducted by gym instructor Alejandro Figueroa.

Vidiyia Singh exercises at the Life Fitness gym, Arima. - Angelo M. Marcelle

Life Fitness Club on O’Meara Road Arima is also complying with the ministry's
guidelines, which limit the space to 15 people at a time. Some machines are even switched off to encourage physical distancing and a new sink was installed at the entrance to ensure clients wash their hands upon entry.

The gym is also complying with the client registry mandated by the government. A representative of the gym, who requested anonymity, said the first day back was slow. "Not a lot of people came in, but it's only been two days."


"Gyms, fitness centres reopen with new rules"

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