By Scott Bradley
The COVID-19 pandemic has been difficult for the health and fitness industry. National lockdowns and restrictions forced gyms to shut their doors for the majority of 2020, impacting people’s mental health.
Two Birds Fitness owner Daniel Stevenson believes gyms can remain safely open if another lockdown happens again: “I think we have shown that through the way we had laid out the gym when we came out of certain lockdowns the fact we gridded it off. All the members are really open if they have got any symptoms at all, they will not turn up for a session – we are still cleaning vigorously between stations as well. So I definitely think it is pivotal as it is something we have preached throughout the whole of the pandemic the fact that people need to be moving to be healthy to keep their immune system up.”
Katy Ivory, who is a personal trainer at Two Birds Fitness, has been working at the gym for the past two months shares Mr Stevenson’s view that gyms can remain open with the correct protocols put in place: “I definitely think so by following guidelines, social distancing, wearing masks using hand sanitiser and cleaning off all the stations as you go, so I definitely don’t see any reason why gyms could not continue to be open.”
Many people started petitions to keep gyms open during the lockdown. Their mental health was suffering from it being closed, and Ms Ivory says people’s mental health was severely affected during them: “Yeah, I definitely think so. It is known that health and fitness, training and doing your workouts is a massive benefit to people’s mental health, and you get the endorphins release which makes you feel good and makes you feel more energised for your day. So the benefits that come alongside training definitely help peoples mental health and having that [gyms] shut down and people not being able to train, especially in a community gym like this, I definitely think peoples mental health would have been affected.”
To listen to the audio report with Mr Stevenson and Ms Ivory click on the link below.