Fitness trainers Armstrong, George anticipate re-opening of gyms

In this June 23 file photo, Hans Kappel (left) and Odunmbku Somorin exercise under the keen eye of instructor Alejandro Figueroa (background), at D Dial Fitness gym, Arima. - Angelo M. Marcelle
In this June 23 file photo, Hans Kappel (left) and Odunmbku Somorin exercise under the keen eye of instructor Alejandro Figueroa (background), at D Dial Fitness gym, Arima. - Angelo M. Marcelle

FITNESS trainers are eagerly anticipating the re-opening of gyms and health centres in two weeks, saying that they get the best out of their clients from in-person training rather than online classes.

On Thursday, the Prime Minister said from October 11, the entertainment sector, including gyms, will be allowed to re-open for vaccinated employees and clients.

At the covid19 media briefing at the Diplomatic Centre in St Ann's, Dr Rowley said, “Last fortnight we said we will move toward operating our food-service business places and entertainment places as safe zones. We will provide approval for restaurants, cinemas, bars, theatres, to be utilised by the population – but by the vaccinated population.”

Minister in the Office of the Prime Minister Stuart Young explained that the approvals would be for fully vaccinated people over the age of 12.

Business places in the entertainment sector can allow customers up to 50 per cent capacity.

Since March 2020, gyms have only been available for fitness enthusiasts periodically because of the covid19 pandemic.

Akim Armstrong and Keston George are both looking forward to the restrictions being relaxed.

Armstrong, a personal trainer for three years, works through One Power Barbell in D’Abadie.

He told Newsday, “That is a step in the right direction. I have a lot of mixed feelings being only for vaccinated people, but it’s a good step in the right direction…some people can start back earning their income.”

Armstrong said he has mixed feelings opening for vaccinated people only because people who visit the gyms are trying to get healthy and those unvaccinated should be considered. “Places like the gym, like outdoor activities should be more encouraged than opening the restaurants and fast food outlets. That is just my personal view.”

Discussing how he had to adjust during the pandemic, Armstrong said, “I had to divert to online classes. Also I do home visits, also one-on-one (and) sometimes group classes outdoors. Outdoor (activities) were not always allowed, so I had to do online mainly.”

Armstrong said training his clients face-to-face allows him to maximise their potential.

“Some people will choose online, but I personally and my clients they like the interaction. Of course they will want somebody to show them the right form…it can’t compare to physical presence. Online was okay because people were trying to stay active, but it is not the same as somebody who trying to get the results and reach their goals.”

George, who also plays club level football, runs his own programme called Good Vibes Training and Fitness since last year.

George anticipates the return of gyms, saying, “I am very excited for that…for me if you training somebody it is much better to show them in person and correct their form.”

Operating in the pandemic, George said, “Basically I would send work outs to clients and just monitor them. I really did not do much of the online (classes) because I am very personable with my clients, so I like to show them the form etcetera.”

He expected strict guidelines for the gyms, similar to other businesses.

“It’s kind of following what they have been doing, so I am not surprised. Obviously you would always want things to go back to normal as quick as possible, but if this is what we have to do to get back to some semblance of normalcy then I will take what I could get.”


"Fitness trainers Armstrong, George anticipate re-opening of gyms"

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