The three best methods for gym reopening
The world has changed as we know it, and business owners are looking for ways to adapt. There is a light at the end of the tunnel, as the ongoing pandemic has placed the same stress upon all organizations to think creatively and offer people what they need. With the shift to remote work and essential services, consumers have seen an increase in both savings and disposable income due to employment shortages.
This opens up a world of possibilities where ideas, and not necessarily budgets, dictate the services you can provide. Before we can talk about the different services you can offer to reopen your gym, below are some helpful tips that you can use as a checklist for the ongoing maintenance and cleanliness of your fitness club. Remember that these are only suggestions, and should look at your local laws before deciding what to implement.
Suggested protocol for gym owners
- Research your local rules to find your maximum capacity and stay within or below it.
- Choose temporary hours of operation for gym reopening that are following laws, and that staff and customers can handle. A good idea is to find peak times when people are usually in attendance to maximize revenue and minimize exposure.
- Complete a safety plan that includes both staff and clients in the event of a possible case.
- Develop and post required signage in and around the facility before gym reopening
- Ensure proper hygiene equipment is in places, such as wipes, hand sanitizer, and PPE
- Post stickers to keep people 6 feet apart, this includes both lines and equipment.
- Provide or ensure all staff and clients wear face coverings unless otherwise exempted from doing so
- Coordinate multiple locations, if applicable so that quality and service remain consistent throughout each facility.
- Review and perform maintenance if necessary on any HVAC equipment, and call a professional to check the air quality.
Suggested protocol for staff and customers
- Staff should be aware and enforce capacity limits to remain compliant.
- Attend regular training for instruction on proper hygiene, such as disinfecting themselves and the equipment
- Maintain proper physical distancing protocol
- Staff should regularly post signage and check that they are still there to remain compliant. Customers should be strongly encouraged to read these rules and update themselves on the ongoing situation.
- All clients and staff should wear their PPE and properly wipe down machines after use.
- Customers should be strongly encouraged to stay home if they feel unwell.
- Provide proper training to staff on proper screening techniques. Customers should also be walked through the form and asked if they have any questions.
- Make sure clients are aware that they are not just putting themselves at risk, but other patrons as well if they are irate or non-compliant
- Staff should undergo further training and customer service to handle an inevitable increase of complaints due to the situation
- Locker rooms should be cleaned every few hours to remain compliant with disinfection rules.
- Space out the workout equipment, cardio equipment, and vending machines
- Limit or prohibit certain sports or contact activities, such as basketball or boxing
Now that we’ve gone over a suggested checklist, check with state or local guidelines to see if there is anything further to plan out. Once your staff are on board and have walked through the checklist, it is time to reopen your gym. As promised, here are the top 3 ways to do so:
Personal one-on-one training
This feature is a common up-sell and something clients look for in every gym. Personal trainers are the backbone of gym services and have become more important during this pandemic. It is much easier to regulate and remain compliant if there is only one person to train at one time, and this does not even need to be at your facility.
Personal training may present certain issues, such as being too costly for most patrons, and this will lead to a scarcely filled calendar. Introduce the option of small group training as well, where 4-8 people can come in and train with the instructor for a smaller fee than a personalized plan. The advantages of small group training can be read here Successful Fitness Clubs Offer Small Group Training – Here’s How
A quick way to reopen your gym before meeting any guidelines and limitations of in-person training is to hold fitness classes online. Remember that while you may be having difficulty with capacity, most corporate employees and executives have been working remotely. Take this opportunity to schedule classes before and after work, and don’t forget about other peak times, such as lunch hours. While online classes may be effective, they are difficult to coordinate as they present novel issues. Member management must be done entirely remotely while still scheduling your staff. Keeping track of their performance with their online training, marketing, advertising, booking classes, and email/text communication between clients, staff and owners can be logistically challenging. Spark Membership offers an all-in-one solution of fitness management software, starting at just 1$