Before the COVID pandemic struck, one in every seven people belonged to a gym or group exercise facility in the UK, but how many of these people will return to their normal fitness regimes while catching the virus still remains a genuine risk?
For many, the gym is a valuable space to become stronger and fitter, and provides a haven away from the stresses of the current situation.
However with social distancing rules in place, some may feel anxious to start training in gyms again and the dynamics of exercise classes and leisure centres will need to be transformed considerably in order to keep clients safe.
F45 Training, the global industry leaders in group exercise training, share their insights on how the future of group exercise may look like after lockdown and adapt how gyms and studios will to this new ‘norm’
Gyms Will Continue Operating Online
“We are seeing more gyms turn to online classes via Instagram and Zoom in a bid to help their members stay fit and healthy, as well as maintain a revenue stream.
“People are embracing online training out of necessity. Our F45 members are still as committed to their fitness, however they are moderating their expectations of what they can achieve and regularly express immense gratitude for our online programme, as it something distinctly and clearly positive in a world of uncertainty.
“Now that businesses are learning to operate from home and will be worried that nervous gym-goers may not return as soon as lockdown is lifted, gyms are more than likely to keep the online element for good or at least for the foreseeable future, which they can run alongside their studio offering.”
Fitness Communities Will Remain United
“Prior to lockdown, people were seeking more than just physical outcomes in the way that they chose their mode of fitness.
“They looked for a community where people knew them by their name, where they shared similar goals and values and where they could build their choice of fitness into their lifestyle through participating in social and fitness activities with their fellow members.
“We have learnt that our members thrive on community, both inside and outside the confines of our studio space, and they still want to be a part of our community.
“Gym goers are going to choose somewhere they know and trust; where they see their gym as more than just a business, and gyms will be more responsive and communicative with the needs of their members, both in terms of service delivery and in terms of what makes them feel safe.”
We Will See a Rise in Outdoor Bootcamps
“To help keep in line with government guidelines and ensure that optimal social distancing measures are in place, the bootcamps will see each person have a 2m x 2m workout area marked out by 4 cones, and a station marker placed in front of each person’s area.
“There will also be a 50cm gap in between each person’s workout area.
“Members will not move from their workout area for the entire workout, and any equipment used will be their own to avoid contamination.”
Increased Hygiene Measures
“F45 has reassured members that they were taking the threat of the virus very seriously and outlining the actions that they would be taking.
“For the UK, it is difficult to predict what ‘open’ will look like, whenever that will be, however we imagine we will increase hygiene measures dramatically, but this will depend greatly on government guidelines.
“We will also start to introduce a new F45 workout solution for members, to ensure no equipment is shared for in-studio workouts and to comply with the strict reopening guidelines.
“This programming will use the majority of equipment packs, but members will be assigned to a fixed station for the entire workout to help maintain social distancing guidelines and eliminate person-to-person contact and sharing of equipment.”