The Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport announced that gyms and indoor pools will be allowed to reopen from July 25.
After being closed for almost four months, this will come as a welcome relief to fitness providers and gym-goers alike.
Gyms prepare to reopen next Saturday
The Hogarth Club on Airedale Avenue will be reopening on Saturday 25 July. Tim, the Club Director, said:
“We have been following government guidelines in a phased reopening of the Club, so we have been able to test out our systems week by week. We have reopened Tennis, The Hogarth Clinic, parts of The MediSpa, have provided outdoor classes including Group Cycle and most recently we have opened the Outdoor Gym and The Airedale Bar.”
During the period of closure, the Hogarth Club has built outdoor ‘pods’ on the terrace. With glass screens between dining ‘bubbles’, members and friends will be able to enjoy a drink and al fresco dining, including BBQs, hog roasts, veggie and vegan salads.
Many gyms and fitness professionals were forced to adapt during lockdown in order to keep their members and clients engaged.
Sofia Santarelli is a Pilates instructor in Chiswick. She moved much of her business online and, as restrictions eased, also provided outdoor classes for her clients. She said she was even busier than usual during lockdown.
Forge Warehouse Gym, a small, independent gym on Cunnington Street, have been operating outdoors since closure. They have also been providing members with online training programmes via an app.
Members ‘keen to return’
Jamie, a coach at Forge, spoke to the Chiswick Calendar. He is hoping that their membership will bounce back after lockdown, despite dwindling over the past few months.
“A lot of them were with us at the start but as the months went on people did start losing a bit of motivation, some people dropped off. They started doing more running outside instead, especially as bans got lifted and we could be outside more.”
However, he says that members seem to be keen to return to the gym when they reopen on Saturday.
“I think everyone has realised that health is crucial now, so hopefully people will invest in themselves more.”
Aleksandar Dzeletovic, a personal trainer at Roko Health Club in Chiswick, also reopening on the 25th, said that all of his clients are looking forward to going back. However, his client base is relatively young and he is aware that this may not be the case for trainers with a more mixed client base.
Jamie, at Forge, however, has said that it seems to be the older clients with more disposable income who seem more committed to returning.
Jake, a freelance personal trainer who lives near Turnham Green, told the Chiswick Calendar that he found it frustrating that gyms didn’t open sooner, especially when pubs, restaurants and bars were given the green light.
“We’re in a health crisis. We need to be promoting exercise and self-care, not pub crawls.”
He also believes that social distancing is much easier to implement in a controlled fitness environment than it is in pubs and bars and said that “gyms have been preparing for this for months.”
Virgin Active, Chiswick Park, also plan to reopen on 25 July.
“Our clubs are large with spacious studios and equipment zones. This means we’ve been able to adapt our club layouts and class capacities to apply social distancing without compromising your exercise experience in any way.”
Other clubs reopening on 25 July include The Riverside Gym & Health Club in Dukes Meadows, West 4 Gym in Sutton Lane and Snap Fitness.
For further information about fitness options in Chiswick, visit our Fitness Directory.
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