If you want to return to offline workouts during a pandemic, this article will be useful for you. Some countries are gradually easing quarantine restrictions: fitness clubs, spas, and swimming pools and finally opening again. Of course, everything happens with certain restrictions that guarantee (supposedly) the safety of guests. The Internet Protocol team will tell you how to safely return to the gym in the new environment.
1. Estimate risk consequences
Some studios and clubs are returning to work gradually in test mode in order to fine-tune all processes in compliance with sanitary standards. If you really want to, but it’s terrifying to return to the gym, evaluate the risks. For example, no one disinfects a playground or areas around a park bench with an antiseptic after every visitor. On the contrary, in cycling or yoga studios, mats are necessarily processed, like all the tools like dumbbells and rods.
2. Visit small studios with a good reputation
Small studios, where there are no crowds, are now the safest places to visit, while it’s better to hold off going to large fitness centers for a while. If you still adhere to quarantine rules, but feel like you miss live workouts, you can treat yourself and go to a small studio once a week.
Here are the measures the studios should take to ensure your safety:
- To avoid crowds looking for the right place in the gym, they need to put stickers on the floor to indicate each client's location.
- The break between fitness groups should be at least 30 minutes for the cleaning and disinfection of surfaces. Besides, recirculators must constantly operate to disinfect the air.
- The trainer and the studio administrator should work in protective face shields, well, like all staff.
- Paying in advance will save you from queues at the reception and contact with cash.
- Antiseptics, gloves, and face masks should be at the disposal of customers. Enough distance between each other, open windows, ventilation will provide everyone with safety.
- At the entrance to the studio, the temperature of both employees and customers should be checked.
- Tactile contact with customers should be limited. Usually, the trainer helps with the equipment. Now, trainers should help from the back.
3. Give up contact sports
You will have to temporarily give up contact training, where you can not avoid touching, such as sparring in combat sports or infant swimming. Also, temporarily forget about aerial stretching – stretching on hammocks – because there is no reliable information on how to disinfect a hammock after each client. Participation in group programs should also be regulated: studios should limit the number of people training at the same time, increase the time interval for disinfection and ventilation between classes. If you feel even slightly unwell, it is better to stay at home.
4. Wash your gym clothes after every time you go to the gym
Please follow all WHO recommendations for handwashing, social distance, and wearing masks. In addition, at the gym, you should:
- Use an antiseptic after using shared equipment.
- At home, after a workout, if this is not obvious to someone, you need to wash your sportswear – not only for safety, but also for freshness.
5. Keep working out online
Especially for this, we wrote a series of articles that will help you stay active at home if you feel uncomfortable with the mere thought of the possibility of visiting the gym during the pandemic.
How to stay safe in swimming pools?
Experts say that catching the coronavirus infection in the pool is unlikely. Chlorine, which is used to disinfect most pools, contributes to the destruction of the virus's lipid membrane. Nevertheless, it is recommended to introduce some restrictions for swimming pools as well. This way, at least 10 square meters of track area should be allocated for one person when swimming.
What do doctors recommend?
The weak point of any fitness club is the reception and locker rooms. Doctors advise people not to forget to keep their distance. Standing in line for a towel and keeping one and a half meters away from others is a sufficient safety measure. In the locker room, of course, it is more complicated.
Doctors also remind that it is necessary to:
- Choose exercise machines around which there are fewer people.
- Not neglect the mask and ask your coach to use it.
- Not touch your face with dirty hands while working out at the gym.
- Wash your hands more often or at least use disposable napkins.