Exercise plays a crucial role in many of our lives, offering both physical and mental benefits. However, with all the huffing, puffing, sweating, and touching, gyms are often a breeding ground for germs and other illness-causing bacteria. You shouldn’t have to worry about getting sick when working on your physique; that’s where sneeze guards for gyms can come in to help.
Why are Gyms High Risk?
Gyms are faced with an especially difficult situation amidst ever-increasing severities of cold and flu season, as masks and other social distancing measures are difficult to enforce. The nature of the virus, how it spreads, and its potential for contagion means that gym-owners need to be especially diligent with their safety precautions and efforts to keep both staff and customers safe.
Cold and flu season may seem like an increasingly difficult obstacle to overcome, as customers are constantly touching equipment and machinery — and breathing respiratory rates due to the nature of the exercise.
Safety Efforts to Protect Your Gym
So, what’s the best way for you to protect your fitness facility during these difficult times? There’s no singular way to get this job done. You’ll need to outfit your gym with a wide variety of safety measures to ensure visitors’ health and wellness. These steps will not only keep people safe but also offer peace of mind that your establishment is doing its civil duty to keep everyone protected.
One of the most notable signs of contagious illness is a fever, which means that taking the visitors’ temperature and especially the staff is crucial. No-contact thermometers can accurately read elevated temperatures without worrying about spreading contagion on the device.
To ensure the utmost safety precautions are being taken, assess your staff’s temperature every day when arriving at the gym. Your team is not only going to have increased contact with visitors and other staff but also with machinery when cleaning. It’s important to monitor your staff’s health and wellness every day to be certain there isn’t an outbreak that could lead to a shutdown.
Utilize Sneeze Guards
Protective barriers are a great way to separate weightlifting equipment, cardio machines, and other fitness areas. Sneeze guards for gyms are transparent physical barriers that prevent the spread of respiratory droplets — and offer unparalleled protection wherever you need it most.
You can outfit your reception areas with countertop sneeze guards to offer a lasting and functional first impression that keeps staff and visitors safe from the moment they walk in the door. Freestanding mobile sneeze guards give you the flexibility and freedom to outfit high traffic areas throughout the day with barriers that keep visitors safe.
Enforce a Mask Policy
Masks offer an additional line of support when attempting to reduce the spread of contagious respiratory illnesses in your gym. Many large gym franchises, including Planet Fitness, have begun enforcing a mask policy as a way deter contagion.
Purchase a supply of disposable masks and offer them to your visitors upon arrival if they do not have one of their own. Imposing a mask policy has certainly had its difficulties, but offering free masks is a way to make the process less turbulent.
Routinely Clean Equipment
While in the past, it was up to the individual working out to wipe down or clean the weights, cardio equipment, or workout machines — the honor system isn’t a reliable way to combat contagious illnesses like a cold or flu.
We’d recommend posting signs to reinforce cleaning machines before and after use. However, that may not be enough. It may be up to your staff to routinely disinfect machines, equipment, and weights to be certain that the job is being done.
The last tip we’ll give is that you may want to limit capacity in your workout facility. Depending on its size, this capacity may vary — but it’s one of the most effective ways to ensure practical social distancing is met while also easing the minds of your customers. During high-risk times of the year, a crowded gym is definitely a red flag, so limiting the number of occupants is an effective way of maintaining business down the line.
It may seem like a counterintuitive way to keep operations running, but it’s better than dealing with an outbreak filled with contact tracing in your facility.
There are countless ways to protect your gym and reassure your customers that it’s a safe place to exercise. We covered some of the easiest and effective ways to get the job done. You may also want to cut down on group exercises, classes, and personal trainer sessions as well.
The size, temperature, and geographic location of your gym all play a role in what safety measures you should take. Smaller gyms with less room to work with will have a more difficult time with combatting cold and flu season The same can be said for areas that are extremely hot or in cities with a high influx of illness in recent months or weeks.
Stay safe — and keep your team and customers protected by going the extra mile during these difficult times.