Tough luck, Beijing fitness fans. You may have to find alternate ways to get back in shape this spring, as city authorities have forced gyms across the city to shut down again amid fears of a second wave of COVID-19 infections.
CNBC reports that Beijing gyms this week have been told to temporarily suspend operations, just weeks after being given the green light to reopen.
It’s no doubt a hard pill to swallow for fitness center owners, as a nationwide lockdown to contain the virus starting in January has already devastated local businesses across various sectors. In the capital alone, 200 fitness companies ceased operations in the first quarter of 2020, according to data from Qichacha, a business information database.
But fears of a coronavirus resurgence have abounded following sporadic cases in the ’Jing throughout the month of April, prompting one health risk app to label Chaoyang district as ‘high risk’ earlier this week. So far, it’s the only region in the country to earn such a rating.
Meanwhile, Beijing authorities have announced plans to reopen outdoor and indoor sports and fitness facilities. According to state-run newspaper Global Times, Beijing Municipal Bureau of Sports will gradually be allowing sports facilities to resume operations in four phases.
As GT reports:
“In the first stage, some outdoor facilities were partially allowed to reopen by reservation, including athletics, table tennis, badminton, tennis and so on from April 3 to 21.
“If no coronavirus-relevant cases occur in the first stage, other sports activities would be pushed forward from April 22 to 28, using the guideline of making an appointment, strict implementation of personal information inspection, registration, temperature checks, wearing masks and controlling the number of people, the announcement said.
“From April 29 to May 6, some indoor facilities would reopen, including athletics, table tennis, badminton and tennis. While starting from May 7, more indoor facilities would reopen offering sports activities except judo, taekwondo, wrestling and Chinese boxing.”
It remains to be seen how recent confirmed cases will impact the reopening schedule. In the meantime, looks like it’s back to the home workout plan for Beijing residents. Here’s a simple routine to get you started.
[Cover image via Pexels]