Very few Australians keen to return to the gym as they reopen with social distancing measures

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Punching bags taped up, bubblers in plastic and half the lockers out of order…. So is it any wonder just 12% are going straight back to the gym?

  • Only 12 per cent of gym junkies intend returning soon to their local fitness club
  • New South Wales fitness clubs have now reopened – three months after closing
  • A Fitness First in Sydney’s north has a punching bag covered with yellow tape 
  • Alternate exercise machines were also wrapped in crime scene-style plastic
  • Every second locker was intentionally locked while bubblers were covered up 

Australians aren’t too keen on returning to their local gym – and it’s not because they are lazy.

Fitness centres in New South Wales reopened on Saturday with social distancing measures in place.

Despite being closed for three months, only 12 per cent of exercise-focused Australians indicated they would return to their local gym straight away, a survey by Reactive Fitness found.

The poll of 528 gym regulars was taken in the first week of June, before the NSW government allowed fitness clubs to reopen with social distancing and hygiene measures in place. 

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Australians aren’t too keen on returning to their local gym – and it’s not because they are lazy. Fitness centres in New South Wales reopened on Saturday with social distancing measures in place. Pictured is the reopened Fitness First at Hornsby in Sydney’s north on June 13, 2020

Just 64 respondents answered ‘yes’ when asked if they would be returning to their gym straight away as a responding 88 per cent, or 464 of them, said ‘no’.

Catalina Levitt, a personal trainer based at Bondi Junction in Sydney’s east, said the COVID-19 pandemic had seen people develop home-based exercise regiments.

‘It’s taken on a whole new life as a feature of post pandemic exercising,’ she said.

Some gyms are strictly enforcing coronavirus hygiene measures with Fitness First at Hornsby in Sydney’s north reopening on Saturday with a punching bag wrapped in yellow crime scene tape.

‘In line with social distancing recommendations, this equipment is not available for us,’ a red cardboard sign said. 

Alternate exercise machines were also covered in yellow, crime-scene style tape to ensure customers maintained their distance.

Foam mats were no longer available. 

Catalina Levitt, a personal trainer based at Bondi Junction in Sydney's east, said the COVID-19 pandemic had seen people develop home-based exercise regiments

Catalina Levitt, a personal trainer based at Bondi Junction in Sydney’s east, said the COVID-19 pandemic had seen people develop home-based exercise regiments

A lounge at the front was also removed, to comply with hygiene standards, as bins filled up with disinfectant wipes.

Benches were also removed from the change room. 

Showering was still permitted and customers were allowed to use lockers, with every second one intentionally locked to maintain social distancing.

‘For your health and safety, every alternate locker has been closed,’ it said.

In the United States, Gold’s Gym has filed for bankruptcy but it remains to be seen whether Australian fitness clubs would be in the same financial stress, considering they were eligible for $1,500 a fortnight JobKeeper wage subsidies.

Daily Mail Australia contacted Fitness First Australia for a comment. 

Some gyms are strictly enforcing coronavirus hygiene measures with Fitness First at Hornsby in Sydney's north reopening on Saturday with a punching bag wrapped in yellow crime scene tape.

Some gyms are strictly enforcing coronavirus hygiene measures with Fitness First at Hornsby in Sydney’s north reopening on Saturday with a punching bag wrapped in yellow crime scene tape.

Showering was still permitted and customers were allowed to use lockers, with every second one intentionally locked to maintain social distancing

Showering was still permitted and customers were allowed to use lockers, with every second one intentionally locked to maintain social distancing

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