Fitness Australia, is calling for the West Australian government to provide rationale around its decision to keep gyms closed longer.

Fitness Australia CEO Barrie Elvish said the association has worked extensively with government authorities during the pandemic to ensure the safety of the whole community while allowing gyms to open and provide an essential service for people to look after their health and wellbeing.

Mr Elvish said:

“Over the past six to twelve months Fitness Australia has been working productively with WA government authorities to put robust COVID-safe practices and procedures in place to enable fitness facilities to operate safely even when certain restrictions are in place. The lack of transmission demonstrates the efficacy of these actions.”

“It was a bit of a shock and disappointing this week to hear that gyms had been singled out with casinos and nightclubs as facilities that must remain closed longer due to the risk of transmission in these venues.

“Industry data shows there have been more than 4 million check-ins at WA gyms registered with Fitness Australia since first reopening and at no stage has there been any infection or transmission cases.

“For contact sport and even a trip to the nail salon or tattoo parlour to be permitted, it’s hard to understand why gyms – where social distancing, high levels of sanitation and hygiene are being implemented and zero transmission – are not allowed to reopen yet.

“For many people, a trip to the gym, or participation in a group fitness class, helps maintain and manage mental health and overall wellbeing, yet the community is being restricted from using these services due to decisions that are not based on fact, previously agreed to protocols or current data.”

Mr Elvish said Fitness Australia wanted to work with the government to ensure they had access to vital industry data to inform key decisions.

Mr Elvish said:

“As the industry’s peak industry association, we want to work with the government to alleviate any concerns they have around the safety of registered gyms. We have thousands of individual and business members who are able to provide instant data when it comes to check-ins, contact information and tracing.”

“This is the same data that has shown us that our members’ gyms across WA are safe.”