As gyms reopen, what will exercise and fitness look like in a post-Covid world?

It might also change what constitutes workout gear. 

Wearing a face mask might be a good idea while exercising according to government guidelines. “It is generally considered safe to exercise with a face mask on, but take careful considerations to how it makes you feel as you will be decreasing the flow of air to your lungs,” says Dr Powles. “Monitor whether you become lightheaded, dizzy or experience a shortness of breath that you wouldn’t usually when exercising.”

You might also start seeing more people carrying disinfectants in their gym kits. “Touching equipment that hasn’t been washed and then touching your face can spread the virus,” says Dr Powles. This includes things like balls, frisbees, or outdoor gym equipment. “If exercising outside, such as in an outdoor gym, make sure you wipe the equipment with a disinfectant wipe before use and wash your hands or use hand santiser as soon as possible after using it. Playing ball games or with a frisbee are similar: make sure you clean your hands and try and avoid touching your face before you do.”

But overall, the biggest change Birtwistle believes we’ll see is more people doing more kinds of exercise, having had the opportunity to try something new in lockdown. “I believe that those who have focused on one thing for years, will branch out and try something new and that we will all become more cohesive in our love of health and fitness,” he says. “Ideally we would all see the value in other training methodologies and be more open to other ways of training. At the end of the day, all fitness done safely can be of huge benefit to us all. Fitness is for everyone.” 

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