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Melbourne fitness facilities prepare for post-lockdown reopening
Following the Victorian Government’s most recent announcement around the easing of lockdown restrictions, indoor gyms and fitness centres in regional Victoria have been operational since last Wednesday (28th October) and will again been open in Melbourne from Monday 9th November.
However, Victoria's density limit - one person per 8 metre², with a cap of 10 people per space and 20 per venue - which is twice as restrictive as that in NSW, presents a challenge for operators.
Other than a brief period in June, facilities have been closed since March and are currently working with Victorian Government officials and peak bodies on details of what operations will look like.
While industry leaders in Victoria have lobbied for an earlier opening of the sector, others, including owners, groups and franchisors have also been preparing for reactivation.
12RND Fitness Chief Executive, Michael Jordan has advised of the support given to franchisees during lockdown including enhance their At Home training experience, using Myzone MZ-Remote to keep members engaged in their Myzone Heart Rate challenges, and replicate the experience from the in-club environment; delivering a webinar with leading management consultants PwC to guide them through financial government support initiatives and schemes, and streamlining their expenses; and presenting a masterclass with motivational speaker, Ritchie Gibson about how to "manage your mindset through times of adversity” for franchisees to help maintain positive mental wellbeing.”
Jordan advised that the franchise also “oganised 2 on 1 outdoor PT programming with a COVIDSafe plan, and marketing assets for advertising specific to the Victorian market and participated in the petition to reclassify gyms and health clubs alongside Fitness Australia.”
Among other operators, Scott and Kris Sudale owners of Momentum Fitness Warrnambool moved their operations outdoors under marquees in order to commence operations when restrictions on outdoor training were lifted.
In addition, in preparing for reopening, Fitness First Australia advised on its website that the following will apply in its Victorian facilities: "memberships have been reactivated now that we are able to welcome you back into our clubs.
"You do not need to take any action, we have automatically made this change. We are pleased to let you know that whilst we are under current restrictions, your membership will be discounted by 50% which we hope will ease the pressure so you can get back into the club and resume your training."
Victorian Government to encourage sport participation
The Victorian Government is aiming to encourage children to play sport with their teammates and friends as part of a $45.2 million funding plan to help families with the costs of community sport.
The $21 million Get Active Kids Voucher Program is a Victorian first and will support children to get involved in organised activities by providing $200 vouchers to help families with the cost of sports equipment, uniforms or memberships.
The package will also deliver more opportunities at school to participate in sport as part of the Active Schools program. More resources and expertise will be available to help Victorian students become more active, including:
• $7 million to support up to 481 government schools with an Active Schools funding boost to help meet the costs of running sport, outdoor education and active recreation programs after school, including forming partnerships with local sport clubs
• $5.7 million for a further 96 schools towards implementing a whole school approach to physical activity
• A new team of physical education leaders that will provide on-the-ground advice and support to more than 800 schools to improve their approach to sport, physical education and physical activity as well as adapting Deakin University’s Transform-Us! Program for secondary schools to get adolescents moving more
• Trials of new and innovative approaches to increasing activity through several partnerships - including working with the start-up community to explore how technology can get teenagers moving
• All schools will have access to a new Active Schools Toolkit, which will include tips and tricks on how to make their school and their kids more active.
Images: 12RND Fitness (top), Fitness First Australia's comprehensive hygiene measures (middle) and the Get Active Kids Voucher Program will support children to get involved in organised activities (below).
28th October 2020 - 9th November reopening for Victoria gyms but with COVIDSafe restrictions
19th October 2020 - Victorian Premier omits ‘high-risk’ gyms from state’s reopening plans
19th October 2020 - Reopened fitness clubs see more than two-thirds of members return
13th October 2020 - Vic Active continues to call for reopening of indoor fitness centres
9th October 2020 - Victorian Aquatic Industry Alliance wants to see children back in the pool
28th September 2020 - No change to fitness centre restrictions as Victorian Government eases lockdown measures
24th September 2020 - Aquatic, fitness and sport facilities headed for membership crisis
7th September 2020 - Fitness First Deakin prioritises health and safety for staff and members
7th August 2020 - Fitness First introduces attendee temperature checks at NSW clubs
11th June 2020 - Fitness First to reopen NSW gyms from Saturday
17th March 2020 - Fitness First highlights gym hygiene measures
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