Yoga

Delhi gyms open: A peek into Day 1 sessions amid extreme Covid caution | India Today

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Dumbbells were lifted off the shelves and treadmills began whirring as many gymnasiums in Delhi opened on Monday after remaining closed for over five months due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

But it’s not business as usual. Thermal screening, limited visitors, physical distancing and frequent sanitisation of equipment were some of the precautions being followed at gyms that saw a good number of fitness enthusiasts and trainers on Day 1.

On Sunday night, the Delhi Disaster Management Authority, led by Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal, said gymnasiums and yoga institutes would be permitted to reopen, except in the containment zones, with immediate effect.

The order brought relief to not just the 5,500 gyms of Delhi and almost 1 lakh workers, but also lakhs of fitness freaks.

India Today visited some gyms for a reality check. A gymnasium in South Delhi’s Malviya Nagar was found to be prepared with all precautions.

A gym owner sprays disinfectant on dumbbells (PTI photo)

At the entrance, a sanitiser dispenser has been put up. Thermal screening is also a must. Inside, health enthusiasts were busy working out.

Gaurav Malhotra, who had reached there at 10 am, said, “I have come here after almost 6 months. I’m feeling excited as I couldn’t work out at home without the facilities that I get here.”

Vivek Sirohi, another member, said, “Coronavirus has had a deep impact on our lives. It has affected us physically as well as mentally. Gyms provide us with a chance to feel good about being fit at both levels.”

At a gym in Central Delhi’s Rajinder Nagar, we found the mandatory 6 feet of physical distancing was being followed by everyone.

We also found that only alternate treadmills were operational to keep visitors at the required distance.
The entire workout area and the equipment were being disinfected frequently.

Mona Diwan, a member, said, “I will go slow, initially. I will eventually follow my workout schedule, something I could not do in the last few months.”

Gym owners are a relieved lot. Chirag Sethi, vice president, Delhi Gyms’ Association, said, “Thousands of gym owners had been waiting for this day. They were going through a deep financial crisis. Our Delhi association has at least 5,500 gyms and there are almost 1 lakh workers dependent on them.”

There were some gyms that will open in a few days. Sunil Kumar Taank, president of the Indian Gyms’ Welfare Federation, said 80 per cent of the facilities had opened and gym enthusiasts, who were unable to work out since March, visited in the morning.

Taank, owner of Black’s Gym, which has 16 branches across the National Capital Region, said, “After entering the gym, members will place red tags on the machines they use and then our housekeeping staff will place green tags on them after they are sanitised.”

“We are coming out with an app through which members will be able to book slots,” he said.

Sarfraz Sartaj of Paradise Gym in East Delhi’s Geeta Colony said they had started renovation in the facility and would be opening it by the end of this week.

Read more at www.indiatoday.in