gyms virgin active age limit

Photo: Pexels

Major changes coming to gyms – but will an ‘upper age limit’ be introduced?

With gyms likely to reopen soon, Virgin Active is prepared for a ‘new normal’. But there’s been less clarity on which ‘age groups’ can use the facilities.

gyms virgin active age limit

Photo: Pexels

Virgin Active has gone public with their ‘back to gym’ plans, in the hope that South Africa moves swiftly towards Level 2 of lockdown and allows the reopening of fitness centres in the process. However, there’s a bit of confusion over who will – and won’t – be allowed to use the facilities.

Virgin Active ‘wear themselves out’ with over 60s policy

A communication issued on Monday suggested that those over the age of 60 would not be allowed to train, and instead advised older citizens to do workouts online:

“In the interest of member safety, only members under the age of 60 years may train. If a member is unable to train at a club, Virgin Active has made a wide variety of workouts available online.”

“We aren’t stopping anyone from training”, Virgin Active state

However, we’ve since received contact from Zainab Slemang van Rijmenant, who is the PR manager for Virgin Active. He’s accepted that, although nobody is too sure about what will happen in the next few weeks, the gym isn’t actually planning to prevent anyone aged 60 or over from training with them.

“We are NOT stopping anyone over the age of 60 from training but we are explaining that everyone needs to make a decision in the best interest of their own health. There are many unknowns, such as government restrictions on capacities. A ‘book your slot’ system is an option if demand is high and we need to manage numbers.”

“Until we have a date from the Government and know what their requirements are, Virgin Active is prepping for all scenarios and will continue to update our policies based on governmental guidelines.”

Major changes coming to our gyms

It seems the age limit is an issue that is yet to be properly ironed out. But there are a few things that already seem cast in stone. Virgin Active has published a list of new protocols for customers who decide to attend their gyms at the next stage of lockdown. It’s fair to say, the gym life as we knew it has changed dramatically.

  • On arrival, members will receive a digital temperature screening. You will be asked to scan your own card for access and Virgin Active team members will conduct a short questionnaire about any symptoms a member may have.
  • Members are required to keep on their face mask while working out as will the Virgin Active team.
  • Internet stations, squash courts, saunas, and steam rooms will all stay closed.
  • The Virgin Active health and hygiene crew ‘follow a rigorous schedule’ to make sure spaces are disinfected regularly. ‘Grid placings’ will be marked out to ensure social distancing.
  • Hand sanitiser will be readily available at the entrance to all clubs and in various locations on the gym floor
  • members will have to use an online booking process through the Virgin Active app
  • only a limited number of members will be allowed at a time
  • no gym towels will be allowed – they will be replaced with paper towels
  • All group classes must be booked beforehand. There will be strict limits of how many people can attend each session.
  • Chlorinated pools are reopening
  • every second treadmill and bike will be disabled for social distancing
  • Used weights will have to be placed in a designated area ready for disinfecting and cleaning.