Anytime Fitness Taree's Elise Gucul keeps looking on the bright side when it comes to the impacts of COVID-19 on gyms and fitness facilities.
From midnight on August 1, all NSW gyms, health and dance studios and martial arts training facilities must have a COVID-19 safe hygiene marshal on-site during opening hours.
For facilities open 24 hours a day seven days a week, like the Taree gym, it means big changes to everyday operations.
Following a three month shutdown at the height of the coronavirus pandemic, Elise is just happy the doors will stay open albeit in a reduced capacity.
"We were devastated when we had to close our doors but at least this time we still remain open for a period during the day," Elise said.
"We don't know how long this is going to be for but at least we're open.
"We're really grateful we can be open for people to come in and train."
The gym will be open 4am to 9pm Monday to Friday and 6am to noon on the weekend.
We don't know how long this is going to be for but at least we're open.- Elise Gucul, Anytime Fitness Taree
These are extended opening hours from the minimum standard set across the State.
Elise is the lucky team member to get the early shift but said the response has already been positive.
"We tried to extend our hours as much as possible without burning out," Elise said.
Marshals will enforce social distancing, conduct cleaning and record keeping accuracy.
Sub-contractors have been hired to audit each Anytime Fitness club in Australia. They will assess everything from COVID-19 safety to defibrillators.
As always, COVID-19 and health rules apply for gym users, such as the use of a towel, wiping down equipment with antibacterial wipes and frequent hand washing and sanitising.
Floor markings with the unmistakable purple club colour ensure gym users keep their distance.
"We are enforcing all these COVID safety rules and I know it's a bit different to what we'd normally do in the gym facility, however, it's for your own safety and we want to remain open and make sure you're safe and healthy and ensure we can get through this together," Elise said.
A positive drawn out from the shutdown earlier this year was renovation work on the gym. Doors reopened on June 13.
Elise explained the benefits to maintaining exercise and general healthy living during these unprecedented times.
"It's really important for our mental health as well as physical and emotional health to be able to come to the gym, relieve stress and socialise but we need to make sure that we're still social distancing," Elise said.
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