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COVID-19 exit strategy: ukactive questions government's 'lack of clarity' on fitness
12 May 2020 . BY Tom Walker
The reopening of leisure, sport and physical activity facilities are included in Step 3
Photo: Shutterstock/Standret
We question, in good faith, the categorisation of our sector as higher risk in comparison to other sectors which are listed earlier for reopening
– Huw Edwards
ukactive has questioned the UK government's apparent decision to class gyms and leisure centres among a group of "higher risk" industry sectors, which means that there is no definite or potential date for the reopening of facilities – and could result in a delay in getting the sector back to business.

The government published a 50-page document on 11 May, called Our plan to rebuild: the UK Government’s COVID-19 recovery strategy, in which it provides details on a three-step road map, which looks to gradually ease restrictions in England.

The reopening of leisure, sport and physical activity facilities are included in Step 3 – which will be taken no sooner than 4 July.

While gyms are not mentioned specifically in relation to the reopenings in Stage 3, however, the document states: "Some venues...where it may prove difficult to enact distancing may still not be able to re-open safely at this point or may be able to open safely only in part.

"In order to facilitate the fastest possible re-opening of these types of higher-risk businesses and public places, the government will carefully phase and pilot re-openings to test their ability to adopt the new COVID-19 Secure guidelines."

In response to the document, Huw Edwards, CEO of ukactive, said: “The government's COVID-19 recovery strategy in its current form regrettably does not provide the clarity we are seeking – omitting both a clear window for reopening our facilities and the guarantee of continued financial support essential for the viability of the sector.

“We question, in good faith, the categorisation of our sector as higher risk in comparison to other sectors which are listed earlier for reopening.

“In order to secure both clarity and answers to the questions posed, we will scale up our constructive engagement with the Government and, over the coming days, discuss in detail the framework we have developed for the reopening of gyms, leisure centres and the wider fitness industry during social distancing.

“Our recommended framework for reopening provides a comprehensive picture of how our sector can reopen safely, setting out how social distancing would be observed in our gyms, studios, and leisure centres.

“We will provide the Government with complete transparency of our sector’s position and the measures we seek to adopt to ensure the safety of our customers and workforce.

“This will help to ensure clarity on any outstanding questions the Government has around the safe environment we can provide.

“We are reassured that the Government will look to learn from international markets, where we are already seeing the reopening of the sector over the next month, including in Switzerland, Italy and Australia.

“There is no doubt that this country needs our sector. The fight against, and recovery from, COVID-19 cannot be secured without the physical and mental benefits our sector provides, and our members have for many years driven physical activity levels across the UK.

“We will now look to work with the Government to not only address the questions they have, but also show that we are a solution to a number of significant challenges that COVID-19 has created.”
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Jobs   News   Products   Magazine
PRODUCT NEWS
COVID-19 exit strategy: ukactive questions government's 'lack of clarity' on fitness
12 May 2020 . BY Tom Walker
The reopening of leisure, sport and physical activity facilities are included in Step 3
Photo: Shutterstock/Standret
We question, in good faith, the categorisation of our sector as higher risk in comparison to other sectors which are listed earlier for reopening
– Huw Edwards
ukactive has questioned the UK government's apparent decision to class gyms and leisure centres among a group of "higher risk" industry sectors, which means that there is no definite or potential date for the reopening of facilities – and could result in a delay in getting the sector back to business.

The government published a 50-page document on 11 May, called Our plan to rebuild: the UK Government’s COVID-19 recovery strategy, in which it provides details on a three-step road map, which looks to gradually ease restrictions in England.

The reopening of leisure, sport and physical activity facilities are included in Step 3 – which will be taken no sooner than 4 July.

While gyms are not mentioned specifically in relation to the reopenings in Stage 3, however, the document states: "Some venues...where it may prove difficult to enact distancing may still not be able to re-open safely at this point or may be able to open safely only in part.

"In order to facilitate the fastest possible re-opening of these types of higher-risk businesses and public places, the government will carefully phase and pilot re-openings to test their ability to adopt the new COVID-19 Secure guidelines."

In response to the document, Huw Edwards, CEO of ukactive, said: “The government's COVID-19 recovery strategy in its current form regrettably does not provide the clarity we are seeking – omitting both a clear window for reopening our facilities and the guarantee of continued financial support essential for the viability of the sector.

“We question, in good faith, the categorisation of our sector as higher risk in comparison to other sectors which are listed earlier for reopening.

“In order to secure both clarity and answers to the questions posed, we will scale up our constructive engagement with the Government and, over the coming days, discuss in detail the framework we have developed for the reopening of gyms, leisure centres and the wider fitness industry during social distancing.

“Our recommended framework for reopening provides a comprehensive picture of how our sector can reopen safely, setting out how social distancing would be observed in our gyms, studios, and leisure centres.

“We will provide the Government with complete transparency of our sector’s position and the measures we seek to adopt to ensure the safety of our customers and workforce.

“This will help to ensure clarity on any outstanding questions the Government has around the safe environment we can provide.

“We are reassured that the Government will look to learn from international markets, where we are already seeing the reopening of the sector over the next month, including in Switzerland, Italy and Australia.

“There is no doubt that this country needs our sector. The fight against, and recovery from, COVID-19 cannot be secured without the physical and mental benefits our sector provides, and our members have for many years driven physical activity levels across the UK.

“We will now look to work with the Government to not only address the questions they have, but also show that we are a solution to a number of significant challenges that COVID-19 has created.”
PRODUCT NEWS
myFitApp launches branded live-streaming as part of its COVID-19 support package
Innovatise, the company behind myFitApp, has announced the immediate availability of its customer- branded live-streaming solution.
EGYM presents Corona Gym Solution, for the successful re-opening of fitness studios
Finally, the time has come: fitness and health facilities around the globe are gradually resuming operations.
Bicester hotel opens purpose-built performance facilities to attract new target audience
The Bicester Hotel and Spa has launched purpose-built fitness and performance facilities to create a standalone, unique offering to attract a new demographic to the site.
EGYM launches digital functionality to help gyms adjust to a post lockdown world
As Governments turn attention to a lockdown exit strategy, the world is bracing itself for a ‘new norm’ where social distancing and heightened hygiene requirements become a part of daily life.
Adidas calls on BLK BOX for flooring solutions at new World of Sports complex
Adidas believes that creators, just like athletes, need an environment that inspires their employees to perform and believe that through sport, we have the power to change lives.
Gympass partners with Wexer to launch on-demand workouts for operators
Gympass has launched Gympass Plus - including an on-demand platform powered by Wexer - for its 2,200+ operator partners. The platform comprises more than 500 workouts from 18 content providers including Zumba and Gaiam.
What’s your Covid-19 exit strategy? How will you use this time to relaunch your business to thrive, not just survive
There is no escaping the fact that we are operating in extraordinary times. Our physical health clubs, gyms and studios are closed and we’re trying to keep our membership engaged, fit and healthy via online and digital training.
Incorpore and MoveGB ink groundbreaking partnership to transform corporate wellness offering
Incorpore and MoveGB have entered into a landmark partnership, combining the UK’s largest provider of corporate gym memberships with the nation’s biggest network of classes.
fibodo launches Fit 4 the Fight initiative to keep people active in the wake of the coronavirus
fibodo, a booking management platform for the fitness industry, has launched Fit 4 the Fight, a new initiative encouraging members of the public to keep active, as well as keep personal trainers and fitness operators working in the wake of the coronavirus.
Crown collaborates on £2m luxury spa at Torbay’s Lincombe Hall hotel
Boutique AA 4-star destination Lincombe Hall Hotel, Torquay, has expanded its leisure provision by unveiling a £2m designated luxury spa.
Aberdeen Sports Village puts digital connectivity at its core
The newly refurbished Aberdeen Sports Village (ASV) has undergone a £500,000 overhaul to enable it to offer a stronger user experience with digital connectivity at its core.
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Harlands Group

Harlands Group is the leading provider of membership management services to leisure operators, proce [more...]
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CATALOGUE GALLERY
+ More catalogues  

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DIARY

 

02-05 Jun 2020

MIPIM

Palais des Festivals, Cannes, France
04 Jun 2020

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Marriott Forest of Arden Hotel & Country Club, Birmingham, United Kingdom
+ More diary  
 


ADVERTISE . CONTACT US

Leisure Media, Portmill House, Portmill Lane,
Hitchin, Hertfordshire SG5 1DJ Tel: +44 (0)1462 431385

©Cybertrek 2020

ABOUT LEISURE MEDIA
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