The strict first lockdown resulted in a significant shift in how people exercised, with some people having more free time than they had before, but only a one-hour window for local outdoor exercise during the lockdown. Something about the time constraint shifted people's attitudes toward getting out of the house, and more people were taking walks, cycling, and jogging in the fresh air.
People of all ages use exercise apps and videos to structure their daily workouts, increasing indoor exercise. Many YouTube exercise videos were created specifically for homeschooled children as the rest of the world adapted to the new restrictions.
Now that we are returning to a "new normal," measures are being implemented worldwide to reduce the risk of spreading infection. However, some of us are understandably apprehensive about returning to the gym, where heavy breathing and sweaty palms seem to be unavoidable side effects of the workout. Here's what we know so far about the situation.
All public places, including those where people are exercising, have strict measures to reduce the risk of infection. This includes gyms and other fitness facilities.
What steps are gyms and sports centres taking to keep us safe?
The staff at gyms and leisure centres is dedicated to ensuring everyone is safe and healthy. Among the modifications they are implementing are the following:
There are stringent rules regarding isolating, so if you or someone close to you is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, you must remain at home and adhere to the testing guidelines.
Returning to the gym safely will require some additional effort on all sides. Apart from adhering to government guidelines and keeping our hands and equipment clean, we can take additional precautions.
Booking slots for visits to places with limited capacity is set to become part of the 'new normal'. Recognizing whether – and how – you must schedule gym time is the first step toward recovery.
The less time you spend entering and exiting various areas, the better. Getting there in your gear, straight in at the beginning and straight out at the conclusion, can help you avoid unnecessary risk. Additionally, lockers and water fountains may be restricted, so bring only what you need – and don't forget your water bottle.
Most gyms will supply cleaning wipes and sprays, and everyone must develop a habit of using them. Before and after use, clean everything you touch (and breathe on).
We've all been relatively isolated for an extended period, and it's tempting to resume conversation with people you know at the gym immediately. While seeing people is nice, remember that social distancing is still critical, and gym equipment is carefully spaced out for a reason.
Personal hygiene is critical in the fight against infection. Hands should be washed frequently, and sanitiser should be used whenever possible. Ensure that tissues are disposed of properly and, once again, avoid going if you feel unwell.
Due to a lack of access to standard gym equipment, it's natural for your fitness levels to have dipped slightly – or significantly. Pay attention to your body and begin slowly. Consult the staff or trainers at your gym, or consult a physician if you have any serious concerns about your health or whether you should exercise.
With vaccines and robust plans for easing lockdown, things appear to be looking up. Staff at gyms and leisure centres across the country are working to adhere to the advice and keep facilities clean and safe to reopen. Maintaining fitness is critical, and returning to the gym is an excellent idea for some people. However, if it is not for you or the prospect of a gym environment is stressful, have no fear. There are numerous ways to maintain a healthy lifestyle that feels right for you.
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