10 tips to stay safe while using gyms and fitness centers during COVID-19 pandemic
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has released its long-awaited tips for minimizing everyday risks of getting and spreading COVID-19, including tips for using gyms and fitness centers.
In general, the CDC says, the more closely you interact with others and the longer that interaction, the higher the risk of COVID-19 spread. Read about the 15 questions to ask yourself before venturing out during the COVID-19 pandemic here.
These are the CDC’s 10 tips to stay safe when using gyms and fitness centers:
1. Use options for online reservations and check-in systems when available.
2. Look for any extra prevention practices being implemented by the facility, such as new plexiglass barriers, staff wearing cloth face coverings, and closing of shared locker room space.
3. Seek facilities with outdoor space or options for virtual classes and training sessions as much as possible.
4. Limit attendance at indoor group training sessions. If you do attend such a session, maintain as much distance as possible between yourself and other individuals, and use cloth face coverings if they do not interfere with your activity. If you need to be indoors, open windows to increase airflow throughout the space.
5. Maintain at least 6 feet of separation as much as possible in areas that may lead to close contact (within 6 feet) among other people, such as weight rooms, group fitness studios, pools and saunas, courts and fields, walking/running tracks, locker rooms, check-in areas, parking lots, and routes of entry and exit.
6. Ensure equipment is clean and disinfected. Wipe down machines and equipment with disinfecting wipes and use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol before using machines.
7. Do not share items that cannot be cleaned, sanitized, or disinfected between use, such as resistance bands and weightlifting belts.
8. Don’t shake hands, give high-fives, do elbow bumps, or touch others because close contact increases the risk of acquiring COVID-19.
9. Be prepared that locker room access may be limited to the restroom area only, prohibiting the use of showers and changing areas.
10. Wear a cloth face covering when interacting with other people to minimize the risk of transmitting the virus. Wearing cloth face coverings is most important when physical distancing is difficult and when exercise type and intensity allows. Consider doing any vigorous-intensity exercise outside when possible and stay at least 6 feet away from other participants, trainers, and clients if unable to wear a face covering. If possible, wear a face covering when walking on an indoor track or when doing stretching or low-intensity forms of yoga indoors. Wash your hands before adjusting your face covering. Still need a cloth face covering? Learn to make one here.