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Scotland's decision to keep gyms shut until September 'ridiculous' and shows lack of respect for the sector
31 Jul 2020 . BY Tom Walker
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon's 'indicative date' of 14 September for the reopening of gyms has angered the sector / Shutterstock.com/Twocoms
Nicola Sturgeon seems hell-bent on keeping gyms closed regardless of the cost to users
– Duncan Bannatyne
Gyms, health clubs and swimming pools in Scotland have finally been given an "indicative" time for a possible re-opening – but the 14 September date has angered the sector.

First minister Nicola Sturgeon, who hasn't exactly endeared herself to the fitness industry by previously branding gyms as "hotbeds for transmission", made the announcement at her daily press conference on 30 July.

Gyms in England reopened last weekend, while gym facilities have also opened in Northern Ireland. It is believed that a date for Wales will be announced shortly – and that it will be set for mid- or late August.

The Scottish government's decision was branded "ridiculous" by a number of industry stakeholders – including entrepreneur Duncan Bannatyne, founder of the Bannatyne Group.

A furious Bannatyne took to Twitter in the wake of Sturgeon's announcement.

"Nicola Sturgeon seems hell-bent on keeping gyms closed regardless of the cost to users," he tweeted.

"She won’t take the time to visit one of our health clubs to see how we keep members safe."

Bannatyne also took Sturgeon to task on her decision to allow pubs and bingo halls to open prior to gyms.

"Gyms have membership logging in systems that allow us to track members movements historically," he said.

"The system tells us which other members were in the club at the same time. This gives us the best track and trace system in the world – no pubs have this.

"We have an indicative date and I don’t trust her not to change that date for spurious reasons.

"Her advisors have not told her that a 30,000sq ft Health Club with the best air circulation in existence and temperature testing with a mandatory mask policy is less safe than a pub, bingo hall or bowling alley. Show me the evidence that I am wrong."

Industry body ukactive also condemned the decision – and said it would be in touch with the Scottish government to try and chart a "clear roadmap" for reopenings.

"We are hugely disappointed and frustrated by this announcement," said Huw Edwards, ukactive CEO.

"These facilities should be open now, and the sector should be afforded the respect given to other parts of society.

“Our sector deserves clarity but sadly this is lacking from the Government’s actions to date, posing the threat of permanent closure to hundreds of gyms and leisure facilities which provide a vital public health service to communities across Scotland.

"We have consistently invited the government and health officials to visit any of the hundreds of gym and leisure centre show sites across the country, and witness how facilities would operate with thorough social distancing measures and hygiene standards in place.

"This invite should be taken up, as the failure to visit facilities undermines the decision-making process within the Scottish Government.

“Conversations will continue with government to establish a clear roadmap to reopening.”
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Jobs   News   Products   Magazine
PRODUCT NEWS
Scotland's decision to keep gyms shut until September 'ridiculous' and shows lack of respect for the sector
31 Jul 2020 . BY Tom Walker
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon's 'indicative date' of 14 September for the reopening of gyms has angered the sector / Shutterstock.com/Twocoms
Nicola Sturgeon seems hell-bent on keeping gyms closed regardless of the cost to users
– Duncan Bannatyne
Gyms, health clubs and swimming pools in Scotland have finally been given an "indicative" time for a possible re-opening – but the 14 September date has angered the sector.

First minister Nicola Sturgeon, who hasn't exactly endeared herself to the fitness industry by previously branding gyms as "hotbeds for transmission", made the announcement at her daily press conference on 30 July.

Gyms in England reopened last weekend, while gym facilities have also opened in Northern Ireland. It is believed that a date for Wales will be announced shortly – and that it will be set for mid- or late August.

The Scottish government's decision was branded "ridiculous" by a number of industry stakeholders – including entrepreneur Duncan Bannatyne, founder of the Bannatyne Group.

A furious Bannatyne took to Twitter in the wake of Sturgeon's announcement.

"Nicola Sturgeon seems hell-bent on keeping gyms closed regardless of the cost to users," he tweeted.

"She won’t take the time to visit one of our health clubs to see how we keep members safe."

Bannatyne also took Sturgeon to task on her decision to allow pubs and bingo halls to open prior to gyms.

"Gyms have membership logging in systems that allow us to track members movements historically," he said.

"The system tells us which other members were in the club at the same time. This gives us the best track and trace system in the world – no pubs have this.

"We have an indicative date and I don’t trust her not to change that date for spurious reasons.

"Her advisors have not told her that a 30,000sq ft Health Club with the best air circulation in existence and temperature testing with a mandatory mask policy is less safe than a pub, bingo hall or bowling alley. Show me the evidence that I am wrong."

Industry body ukactive also condemned the decision – and said it would be in touch with the Scottish government to try and chart a "clear roadmap" for reopenings.

"We are hugely disappointed and frustrated by this announcement," said Huw Edwards, ukactive CEO.

"These facilities should be open now, and the sector should be afforded the respect given to other parts of society.

“Our sector deserves clarity but sadly this is lacking from the Government’s actions to date, posing the threat of permanent closure to hundreds of gyms and leisure facilities which provide a vital public health service to communities across Scotland.

"We have consistently invited the government and health officials to visit any of the hundreds of gym and leisure centre show sites across the country, and witness how facilities would operate with thorough social distancing measures and hygiene standards in place.

"This invite should be taken up, as the failure to visit facilities undermines the decision-making process within the Scottish Government.

“Conversations will continue with government to establish a clear roadmap to reopening.”
PRODUCT NEWS
ASPA International launches handheld UV-C light disinfection lamp
For over 30 years, ASPA International has designed and built high-quality spas for the hotel, health and wellness sectors.
The Retention People unveil 2020 Member Experience Awards winners
Member engagement software provider The Retention People (TRP) has unveiled the winners of its annual 2020 Member Experience Awards (MEA).
Forget the ‘Netflix effect’ – it’s all about the ‘iFit effect’ to boost member retention
Addiction – a word laden with negativity. But isn’t that exactly what the fitness industry wants? For members to be addicted (in a healthy way) to exercise – not just to increase profits but, most importantly, so they can live happier, healthier and longer lives.
Pulse Fitness updates iGym London with state-of-the-art technology
Pulse Fitness has recently completed a refurbishment of the fitness facilities at iGym London.
Storytelling - the future of fitness content
Heading into 2021, storytelling will be a key trend among fitness content creators and connected fitness providers, as the industry recognises its potential to unlock ultra- engaging experiences that boost retention.
What does a socially distanced leisure centre and health club look like?
The world has had to get used to social distancing in 2020 and any business operating in the leisure and hospitality sectors has had to face this challenge more than most.
AskNicely helps empower businesses to improve customer experience and boost NPS
Maintaining a consistent member experience across a growing health and fitness brand can prove challenging.
Ariston’s range of water heaters can reduce running costs for gyms
Ariston’s electric water heaters create hot water cost-effectively, ensuring gym-goers can enjoy a post-workout shower, due to fast reheat times and large storage capacities.
A runner’s life, by Dame Kelly Holmes
I started running when I was 12 years old, a skinny girl with an afro. I knew I loved running, I felt free and seemed to glide easily rather than pound the pavements.
Uscreen announces first to market Apple Watch Fitness Tracker
At Uscreen, we pride ourselves on being proactive innovators in the industry. We're continually doing our research and predicting where the industry is going so we can ensure the state-of-the-art technology to back you up in your video business.
Xn Leisure’s five-step process to increasing member retention
While leisure operators can generate interest and build an audience fairly easily, the challenge is converting an audience into a paying, engaged community – and keeping them there.
Copper clothing can keep staff and members safe
Snap Fitness franchisee, Kunal Patel, is kitting out all staff – from personal trainers to cleaners – with copper-infused masks and gloves from medtech company, Copper Clothing.
+ More products   
 
COMPANY PROFILES
Harlands Group

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

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PENDEX | Simply Ingenious
It trains humans better than humans train humans. Find out more...
+ More videos  

DIRECTORY
+ More directory  
DIARY

 

02-04 Feb 2021

Beauty West Africa

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02-04 Feb 2021

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ADVERTISE . CONTACT US

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

©Cybertrek 2021

ABOUT LEISURE MEDIA
LEISURE MEDIA MAGAZINES
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LEISURE MEDIA WEBSITES
LEISURE MEDIA PRODUCT SEARCH
PRINT SUBSCRIPTIONS
FREE DIGITAL SUBSCRIPTIONS