Image via: Adobe Stock
Image via: Adobe Stock
While many businesses have been allowed to resume under Level 3 lockdown, Pilates and Yoga studios have had to remain closed.
The Democratic Alliance (DA) has called for the reopening of Yoga, Pilates and other studios under Level 3, taking into consideration strict COVID-19 guidelines and regulations.
DA Deputy Shadow Minister of Small Business Development Henro Krüger said Pilates and Yoga studios have been shut down for more than three months due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent economic lockdown.
“They can no longer afford to watch helplessly as their revenue dries up,” said Krüger.
“The owners of these businesses, majority of which are females who desperately need the income, have not had access to a sustainable income for the entire lockdown period and they run the risk of permanently closing down their businesses putting many more people out of jobs,” said Krüger.
The DA explained that it’s not only the business owners who are at risk but also service providers whose businesses are reliant on these studios.
“These include small businesses such as costume seamstresses, Yoga and Pilates equipment and clothing manufacturers, cleaning staff and many instructors – people’s livelihoods are at stake,” added Krüger.
The DA said the industry falls under “non-contact sport” that is operated in a controlled and safe environment and has the ability to adjust to the current realities more readily than other industries.
The party is of the view that if non-contact sport codes are allowed in a controlled safe environment, then the same privilege should be extended to Yoga, Pilates and other studios.
Another grouping in the fitness sector has approached the courts to compel the government to open gyms.
“In an effort to persuade the government to reopen their sector, a group of small business and health industry specialists in the disciplines of Pilates, Yoga and other specialised disciplines have banded together to form The Specialised Studio Practitioners Foundation.
The group has proactively adjusted their studios and have ensured that they are thoroughly cleaned to meet with the required health and safety protocols.
According to the blue party, the industry shows readiness and has all the needed protocols in place, they understand the restrictions on indoor wellness activities and have “all their ducks in a row” to ensure health and safety for their clients during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The DA calls on the government to do the right thing and reopen these studios to save livelihoods and to prevent even more South Africans from being condemned to joblessness,” said Krüger.