fitness

Another pandemic shutdown for fitness studios and gyms: how do we help?

In Toronto, we’ve been in some version of near full lockdown since November. The rules keep changing by increments (a satirical article the other day was titled “Ontario reclassifies ‘grey zone’ to “IDK You Fucking Figure it Out” zone). But one thing is clear: gyms and fitness studios have been closed since October. We’ve all been adapting — zwift, running, virtual classes with our superhero team — but small businesses are really struggling. Outdoor fitness classes MAY start to be allowed this weekend but it’s still March in Canada. So the strain goes on.

I personally really believe in the incredible significance of local studios — my local spinning studio and my local Y are super inclusive. My spin studio and yoga studio have contributed to local projects and provided prizes for countless fundraisers in a way you’d never see from the likes of Peloton or other “big box” fitness options. And I’ve made actual real life friends — and a much bigger array of “hey great to see you!” neighbours — from my local fitness. I really worry about them.

Back in October, I wrote a post about how to help out our local fitness spots during the lockdown. I’ve been doing virtual classes with my local yoga studio and contributing to the virtual library with my spin studio since. I’m still worried. I’m reblogging the post because there are tons of good ideas. Show your local studio a little love in this final stretch (we hope!) of lockdown.

FIT IS A FEMINIST ISSUE

In my province of Ontario, like many places, we’re experiencing a spike of Covid cases, resulting in a movement back to modified “stage 2” rules about public spaces, including a 28 day closure of gyms and indoor fitness studios (along with indoor dining, theatres and bars).

This prompted a certain amount of understandable angst from gym owners, who despaired at the short notice (it was effective the next day), and who’ve been working extremely hard and creatively over the summer to try to generate revenue and create safe community experiences. There was a petition circulating for a while, asking the government to exempt gyms on the grounds that they are contributing to the mental and physical health and wellbeing of the province.

I’m not going to debate that point here, except to note that at the exact same moment the province temporarily closed gyms, a spinning studio in Hamilton which…

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2 thoughts on “Another pandemic shutdown for fitness studios and gyms: how do we help?

  1. I’m the first lockdown I cancelled my membership to my smaller yoga studio. I hadn’t really been liking it there for a while, and I have never returned.
    Our Ymca closed permanently last fall. It was a very sad thing, as I taught yoga there.

    Last summer a new, very small yoga studio opened. Yes, terrible timing! The owner is lovely and I ventured there in July and august, and then into the fall.

    It closed at the December lockdown and I continued paying my monthly membership. I can afford it and I was using their online classes.

    Now they are reopened, but I have found a perfect online practice for me. I no longer use the studios online classes. I continue to support them with my monthly membership. I will until it ends in July. At that time I will decide how to proceed. I do miss people and would like the community if that ever becomes a real thing again.

    This is a small business that I am willing to support. She is a bright light in our community.

    Anne

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  2. I’m a Peloton user and I love it, however the longer lock down goes on, the more I miss my favourite instructors and studios. So now I find myself doing online classes with my favorite peeps AND using the Peloton too.

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