Gyms will reopen in England on April 12, but people from different households are not to deliberately mix in, under new rules announced by the Prime Minister on February 22.
Gyms, swimming pools and other indoor exercise rooms will reopen in the second stage of the lockdown easing, which begins after Easter.
But ministers are keen that there is no house mix indoors until later in the year, so it will still be against the rules to meet someone who is not in your household. for indoor training. Exercise classes will also be banned when gyms reopen in an attempt to reduce contact between people while they are training.
Social distancing, regular cleaning and other Covid safety measures should also apply.
Further relaxation of the rules will come in Stage Three, on May 17, when people are once again allowed to mingle indoors. The saunas and hammams will also reopen in the third stage.
The outdoor facilities, meanwhile, will open in the second part of the second stage, on March 29. This means that the outdoor pools, tennis courts and basketball courts will be open earlier than the indoor facilities.
Gyms are believed to pose a higher risk than other indoor venues because people who exercise expel more droplets and aerosols as they breathe more deeply. But many gyms are well ventilated and have Covid safety measures such as regular cleaning.
By June, the government hopes to remove social distancing requirements and other restrictions on reopening the premises, but the relaxation of those measures depends on the outcome of a review by officials.
Ministers hope life will be generally back to normal by the fourth stage of the lockdown easing on June 21, but it is possible that some restrictions will continue until the fall. The prime minister said decisions will be guided by “data, not dates”.
As of January 5, gyms have been closed and exercise rules have been limited, with people told their daily exercise should be limited to a single outdoor excursion and not outside of their area. It should only be done with one other person outside of your household.
The government has also said that the only opportunity for a sports center to remain open is for elite athletes to train and compete (in indoor and outdoor sports facilities), and for professional dancers and choreographers to work ( in fitness and dance studios).
However, there have been calls to reopen gyms on a priority basis due to the positive effects of exercise on mental health. Despite this, lockdown measures are still in place for now and gyms are no exception.
Can I go to the gym?
Not before April 12. According to the current rules, the gyms are always closed and therefore the only option to exercise is either at home or outside with another person outside of our bubble if you wish.
Do runners have to wear face masks?
Not really. The guidelines say people should “wear a face mask in enclosed spaces where social distancing is not always possible and where they come into contact with others they do not normally meet.”
In crowded areas, this advice could extend to runners, but officially there is no advice requiring people training in a large space to wear a mask. As long as you practice social distancing, it shouldn’t be necessary to cover your face while exercising.
“No reason can come to my mind that we should recommend masks for use during exercise. People are expected to be socially left behind during exercise, ”said Dr Ben Killingley, consultant in acute medicine and infectious diseases at University College London Hospital.
However, many professionals agree that wearing a mask is more about preventing the spread of Covid-19 to others than protecting yourself, especially if you are asymptomatic. In a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), 42% of 78 close contacts of patients with Covid-19 at a hospital in Wuhan, China, had no symptoms of the disease.
If you are going to be jogging in a densely populated area, it may be advisable to keep a face mask in your pocket and put it on when passing crowds.
Is wearing a face mask while exercising harmful?
There is no scientific consensus on the benefits or dangers of wearing a face mask while exercising, mainly because little research has been done in this area.
Last May, a man’s left lung collapsed after running for two and a half miles while wearing a face mask in China. Doctors found that his left lung was punctured and shrunk by 90%, a condition they said was caused by the high pressure in the man’s organ due to the fact that he was doing strenuous exercises. while wearing a mask. Wuhan Hospital’s chief medical officer Dr Chen Baojun warned that people should avoid wearing face masks during exercise, as face coverings could obstruct the flow of oxygen.
However, these incidents are very rare and it is likely that underlying health issues or other factors such as an ill-fitting mask or excessive exertion are involved.
Some professionals have advised against high intensity exercise, such as running, while wearing a face mask. Talk on This morning Last May, Dr Hilary Jones informed viewers that wearing a mask while exercising might not be a good idea.
“If you exercise outside and jog, you don’t really need a mask, as long as you’re not with other people,” he said. declared. “There is no indication to suggest that you wear a mask or it is beneficial. In fact, it covers your mouth and nose, it inhibits your breathing to some extent and some people would say you increase the rate of carbon dioxide that you breathe out when you exercise and that’s probably not a good idea.
However, the research is still in its early stages. “Studies evaluating the effects (including CO2 levels) of healthcare workers wearing a respirator (fitted masks) have been done and they show (by several mechanisms) that they can impair performance at work,” said Dr Killingley. “However, I am not aware of any similar studies on other types of face masks and certainly not related to general public use.”
What type of mask should I wear when I exercise?
From floral prints to tough respirators, it seems there’s a face mask for every occasion. But with Adidas and Rebel hopping on the trend, is there a specific type we should be using?
“A number of companies produce face masks for running, and these are for styling and the use of materials to prevent getting excessively wet – breathing through the mask will produce water,” said the Professor Andrew Lane, Professor of Sport and Learning at the University of Wolverhampton. “The mask should be clean and so having several will help. The material should be porous. Many runners use a buff as a mask.”
To support our “Journey back to the World” Rebel introduced a soft, breathable fabric face mask that is washable, making it safe for sweaty exercise. They also provide FFP level 1 protection.