Gyms To Remain Closed In New South Wales For Foreseeable Future
If you've been absolutely itching to get back to the gym in New South Wales, we have some bad news for you.
Although plenty of other aspects of pre-lockdown everyday life are slowly returning to normal, it seems like the sweatbox is staying shut for the time being.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian said there's no date or timeline set out for gyms to reopen, so people will just have to wait and see for the moment.
She told reporters: "We're still working with industry on that.
"Obviously frequent use of equipment at short intervals poses a health risk. We are not in a position to make an announcement yet."
That was backed up by the state's Health Minister Brad Hazzard, who said: "I think that's it fair to say there are some issues with use of equipment in gyms.
"All I can say is we're doing our best to make sure that the community is kept safe. Gyms are very much at the front of my mind and as you can probably tell I need to get to the gym right now."
Lobby group Fitness Australia called on the state government to open gyms in line with pubs, cafes and restaurants being allowed up to 50 customers from 1 June.
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They say their gyms already have a Covid-19-safe plan in place and will be able to keep the risk of virus transmission down to a minimum.
As the winter months approach, please get tested if you have even the mildest of symptoms. Assume it's COVID-19 and help us stay on top of the virus. Stay updated through https://t.co/ka9q1ClOKn and 13 77 88. pic.twitter.com/F5JV5L9Kkw
- Gladys Berejiklian (@GladysB) May 25, 2020
So, you can keep all that new fitness gear in the closet for now because it could be a while before it's reopened.
At least the call for gyms to start opening up has the support of the country's deputy Chief Medical Officer.
Dr Nick Coatsworth told Sunrise: "With cases only in single digits on a daily basis now, we need to start doing the other things that make us healthy, like getting back into our sport and getting the gyms open."
Some gyms in Victoria will be allowed to open on 1 June, while people in South Australia and Tasmania will have to wait until 8 and 15 June respectively.
While that is bad news, at least beauty and nail salons will be allowed to open in New South Wales from 1 June.
Each salon will have to follow the following set of rules to ensure social distancing and that customers are in the shop for a little time as possible:
- One person per 4 square metres including both staff and clients, up to a maximum of 10 clients at any one time
- Exclusion of staff and clients who are unwell, even if they have only mild symptoms
- Records of attendance on the business premises for all staff, clients and contractors
- Cleaning requirements
- Removal of books, magazines and iPads from waiting areas to reduce the potential for infection of clients
- Seating in waiting areas that complies with physical distancing
- Ensure good hand hygiene facilities are available, including at venue entry and exit, and promote excellent hand hygiene by staff
- Clearly displayed conditions of entry on their entrance, website and social media platforms
- Designating a staff member whose responsibilities include ensuring staff and clients have appropriate physical distancing and that the venue does not exceed the maximum capacity limit and
- Measures to maximise distancing between staff where safe and practical, including assigning staff to specific work stations that are at least 1.5 metres apart and minimising any interaction between these stations
- Encourage download of the COVID-safe app
New South Wales Health says that 'once beauty salons are open, any services that normally and legally take place in a beauty salon will be able to be undertaken'.
Featured Image Credit: PA