When are gyms reopening and what safety measures will be in place?

Are you desperate to get back in the gym?
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  • As a result of lockdown, indoor gyms have been closed for over four months, and are scheduled to be one of the last places to open.

    Over the past couple of months, we’ve all been doing our best with at-home workouts (hello Joe Wicks), as well as outdoors runs and walks.

    But fitness fans are likely keen to know when they might next be able to use the machines at their local indoor gyms, or enjoy classes there once again. So when will indoor gyms reopen?

    When are gyms reopening in UK?

    Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden has made an announcement on the latest lockdown easing measures today. He has announced that indoor gyms, as well as swimming pools and sports facilities, will now be allowed to reopen from Saturday 25th July – just over two weeks from today.

    He said that “for months now our lives have been on hold”, but that as “we have made huge progress”, these facilities, which are closer contact, will now be allowed to reopen.

    However, he did urge that they will be subject to ‘enhanced cleaning’ to stop the spread of the virus.

    Oliver Dowden also explained that outdoor pools will be able to open too, from 11th July.

    MORE:When will face masks become mandatory and who is exempt from wearing face masks?

    Appearing on LBC Radio a few days ago, Prime Minister Boris Johnson confirmed that gyms will be reopening ‘in a few weeks’ time. He explained, “We are going to reopen gyms as soon as we can do it in a Covid-secure way and I think that the date for reopening gyms at the moment, if we can do it, is in just a couple of weeks’ time.”

    When are gyms reopening UK?

    Credit: Getty Images

    According to reports, some gyms were hoping to get the green-light to open earlier, on 11th July, but the opening date is actually two weeks later than that.

    MORE: Are pubs closing again in the UK after drinkers test positive for coronavirus?

    A few weeks ago in June, Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden revealed the government’s hopes that indoor gyms could reopen in “mid-July”, if leisure facilities were deemed to be following hygiene protocols well enough. And it seems that has been the case.

    Reportedly, gyms have opened up test sites in the last few weeks to work out the best way to reopen whilst ensuring public health standards are adhered to.

    Gyms in Northern Ireland will reopen on Friday 10th July, following an update last month from the NI Executive.

    When will gyms reopen in Scotland?

    Back in June Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon explained that the reopening of indoor gyms in Scotland would be ‘unlikely’ before 23rd July, suggesting that gyms reopening there is still a few weeks off.

    In fact, Glasgow Life, who run leisure facilities in the city, confirmed just last week that they would not be reopening their venues until 17th August.

    What will gyms look like when they reopen?

    As with the venues that have already opened – bars, restaurants, pubs and hairdressers, which reopened on 4th July – gyms will need to stick to a set list of hygiene rules when they do reopen.

    Credit: Getty Images

    So what rules will be in place the next time you visit the gym?

    • Numbers of people inside the gym will be limited, and numbers will vary depending on which gym you visit
    • Exercise machines placed two metres apart
    • Each piece of equipment must be cleaned in between use (either by staff or customers)
    • Gym classes will be much smaller, and customers will be discouraged from congregating outside each class
    • One-way systems may be implemented to reduce the flow of people inside the gym, and minimise contact