When will gyms reopen in England? Date fitness centres can open as lockdown restrictions are eased

Lockdown restrictions have started to gradually ease in England, with gyms set to reopen this weekend

By Helen Johnson
Friday, 24th July 2020, 2:47 pm

Non-essential shops, pubs, restaurants have now reopened, but when can you go back to the gym?

Here’s what you need to know.

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Boris Johnson recently announced plans for a gradual easing of the coronavirus lockdown in England, with primary schools and shops partially reopening from 1 June (Photo: Shutterstock)

When can gyms reopen?

Indoor gyms and sports facilities in England will be able to reopen their doors from Saturday 25 July, but new rules and safety measures will be in place to keep customers and staff safe.

Health club chain, PureGym, previously said it was working out how its facilities could be laid out to allow for social distancing, alongside capping member numbers.

PureGym CEO Humphrey Cobbold, previously told BBC Radio 4's Today Programme that the chain was working to upgrade hygiene and sanitation procedures in order to "provide a safe environment for the future."

The PureGym website states, “Based on government guidance, our gyms in Northern Ireland have reopened and gyms in England will reopen on 27th July. We do not yet have dates for reopening of Scottish and Welsh gyms."

What might be different when gyms do open?

To keep the numbers down in changing rooms, classes in some gyms are likely to be shortened and breaks between them lengthened. The number of people in a class may also be reduced, and there could also be markings on the floor to ensure social distancing is maintained.

Gym members could also be asked to frequently wash their hands during visits.

Guidance for the reopening of gyms and sports facilities has now been published, including social distancing measures and cleaning advice.

New measures include limiting the number of people using a facility at one time, reducing class sizes and spacing out equipment. People will also be encouraged to shower and change at home where possible, but changing rooms will be open.

In regards to social distancing while at an indoor gym or sports facility, the Government advice explains, “You must maintain social distancing in the gym/leisure facility wherever possible.”

However, where the social distancing guidelines cannot be followed in full in relation to a particular activity, businesses are being asked to consider whether that activity needs to continue.

Face coverings will not be mandatory in gyms.

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said face coverings would not need to be worn in gyms, explaining, "We have not taken a decision to require the wearing of face masks in respect of gyms”.