Latvia’s leading fitness clubs will ask the government to reconsider the decision to ban indoor indoor sports from Saturday. It is confused how contactless sports in a four-square-meter area can be more dangerous for everyone than a private party for 30 people without distance and with drinking.
As no state of emergency has been declared in the country, fitness clubs believe that restrictions on one sector would impose an obligation on the state to cover the losses incurred.
Representatives of fitness clubs are considering a picket in the new week. Clients whose government decision has banned sports group activities from this Saturday would also be invited to join.
There will be no picket if the government responds to the joint request prepared by 60 Latvian fitness clubs sent to it tomorrow. Namely, cancel a ban on contact group activities, because in them people do not touch each other, and they are cardinally opposite to team sports.
“Sports clubs have good ventilation. Sports clubs observe the distance, the square meters are determined – it has been measured and tested, ”points out the head of the Latvian Fitness and Health Promotion Industry Association Gints Kuzņecovs.
Inna Alne, the head of MyFitness Latvia, says: “On average, each of our gyms is 200 square meters in size, so we can afford to create a safe space for each gymnast. There are glued dots where everyone has to exercise. ”
The equipment for group lessons is also disinfected before and after use.
Epidemiologists are very worried about the seemingly narrow changing rooms as a risk area for infection, but in large sports clubs the changing rooms are spacious with the possibility to limit the proximity of the lockers used. In the gym, the government wonders why the government does not restrict and allow adult professional sports, where Covid-19 infections have been detected, to happen.
“Since the lifting of the emergency, our clubs have been visited more than half a million times. There has been no case of anyone being infected or the club being a hotbed of Covid-19 infection, ”says Alne.
According to the fitness association, those sports clubs whose main activity is only group activities may not survive if this downtime lasts for more than three weeks. “They were already on the brink of survival during this period, and they must continue to pay contributions, continue to pay salaries, and they will be forced to ‘close’,” says Kuznetsov.
If the government does not remove the restrictions on the activities of fitness cube groups, then the state would be obliged to compensate the losses caused to sports clubs and the salaries of coaches driven by downtime from the budget.
“For these three weeks, the downtime benefits for our group coaches could cost more than 50,000 euros. In my opinion, the government is responsible for both these salaries and the turnover that deprives us, ”says Alne.
At present, there is no indication that the government could differentiate group sports and allow any of them to continue. Uga Dumpis, the chief infectologist of the Ministry of Health, previously emphasized – in group sports there is a high risk of infection – people from different places outside their social bubbles gather here. In its turn, the Center for Disease Prevention and Control (SPKC) emphasizes – the risk is caused indoors as such.
“Respiratory viruses mostly spread in the form of droplets through the air. In situations where higher-intensity exhalation is formed, for example, when exercising and exercising, airway droplets containing the virus spread more widely and more intensively in the environment, ”explains Ilze Arāja, SPKC public relations specialist.
The concerns of epidemiologists are understood, for example, in the sports studio “DCH”, which will conduct group trainings from indoors.
“From our point of view – you can always adapt, you can always find solutions in any situation. Let’s play outside, individual trainings inside. Everyone will find an opportunity, ”says Andris Īviņš, the coach of DCH Studija.
Health experts are also concerned about what social networks plan to do to limit restrictions, such as calling amateur basketball, football or hockey a private event behind closed doors.