We’ve spent lots of time planning during lockdown. But we weren’t just spending time. We’ve also made a considerable financial investment to ensure the safety of our members over the coming months, and indeed years. We will also rely on member feedback. After experiencing the new Bwell, anything you can suggest that will make things even better will be much appreciated and certainly taken on board.
Below you can read the step-by-step plan of how we aim to make your training stress free, and your gym a cleaner and healthier place to exercise in.
Numbers – For gyms in a post-lockdown future, controlling numbers will be vital. Unlike some shops where people are in and out quite quickly so may be prepared to wait, outside queuing simply won’t work for gyms. Therefore, gyms will be forced to experiment to find a system that works for them.
In our case, we’ve designed a completely new booking system. It’s a system that gives everyone of all physical abilities the opportunity to visit the gym for 70 minutes, as many times per week as they wish to. We’ve even gone so far as adjusting our opening times so we can cater to more training slots per day.
The system is designed to be very user friendly. If you’ve ever purchased something online, you’ll be able to use this booking system. Once registered, it will even remind you of the training dates and times you’ve selected.
Virtual Tour – We’ve designed our own BWell virtual tour. Now members and potential members can go online and view all the changes we’ve made to the gym from their own homes. The tour is so detailed and thorough that there will be no real reason for anyone to enter the building just to see the new layout.
Staff Training – Our staff will not be allowed to return to work until they’ve been through the BWell Covid-19 Training Package. This will not be a 5 minute online multiple-choice session, but 8 hours of staff training conducted by qualified people at the tops of their games in several industry sectors. This will be followed by a familiarisation training session on the gym/shop floor. Once training has been undertaken and the gym owner is happy the staff are competent, they will be allowed to return to work.
Closing throughout the day – We have chosen to close our doors for 10 minutes at the end of each training session throughout the day. This gives our staff an opportunity to clean the gym, tidy up, and regroup before the next session. Although some may consider this a step too far, we disagree. We feel it would be a big mistake to underestimate how our members are feeling in the current situation – and we also want to reassure our staff that everything is under control.
NO Retail – NO Cash – For the next few months we will not be selling any retail products. We want all our focus to be on the gym floor – making sure equipment is wiped down, social distancing is being observed, and our members are ok. No
cash is an obvious one to introduce – there’s simply no reason for anyone in the gym to be touching money.
Extra Measures – In addition to the cleaning facilities we already had in place, BWell has introduced 10 extra cleaning stations. This means that wherever a member goes in the gym they’ll be able to lay their hands on the equipment needed to spray down the kit or clean their hands.
Rip bags and dispensers are now out on the gym floor to dispose of gloves and masks. You simply rip off a bag, place those items into the bag, and either take them with you or place them in the specific bins provided. These waste control measures are in place because it’s important our staff do not have the task of handling other people’s PPE.
As always, we ask that you bring your own towels to BWell, and to take them with you when you leave. You can also bring your own gym mat if preferred, but we will also have plenty of freshly sanitised gym mats on the premises for you to use.
Signage – This is an easy thing to get wrong. If there are too many messages, people simply stop seeing them. However, catchy, bright, correctly placed signage can help, and will gently remind members of the guidelines set out within their facility. Our signage follows the national guidelines although we’ve brightened them up considerably.
Removal of the café area – We’ve taken out our café and seating/dining area. This has made our reception area a lot bigger, and gives people more space to move around in. That one move alone has removed a lot of operational hazards
Reopened the Outside Gym area – We are very fortunate to have a decent size outside gym. In good weather this will enable people to train outdoors and ease the pressure indoors.
Improved our payment method – We have reduced our minimum payments on cards and we now take Apple and Android payments on our PDQ’s. Going cashless and contactless makes paying for items not only faster, but much cleaner.
Our Vulnerable Members – This could be anyone 65+, or someone suffering with a condition that prevents them from working. There will be a single 70-minute time slot every weekday at 10.50am – 12noon where they will not have to book, they can simply just turn up. Bwell is big enough to cater for these members, and our staff are fully qualified to cater for all their conditions. That said, we are also accustomed to sending people home if we feel they shouldn’t be exercising.
Training Cards – All training programme cards have been removed from the gym. We will be starting again from scratch. Most members will not have been able to maintain their training during lockdown, so there will be a need for a gentle return to exercise. Instead we have designed 4 training programmes that cover any ability or age group, and these can be downloaded from our website and printed off. After an initial two week ‘familiarity period’ our trainers will start re designing programmes for those members who request one.
This has the added benefit of a 2-week period where we can focus entirely on the members returning to the gym
New Procedures – Like most gyms and other businesses we have introduced a lot of new procedures. However, it’s the responsibility of our staff to worry about these on your behalf. Members should be concerned about blowing away the lockdown cobwebs, and we can worry about you exercising safely.
What we would ask of our members is that they wear appropriate gym wear whilst exercising, with no workwear, uniforms, or outdoor clothes. We’d also encourage members to bring their own personal hand gels, disinfectant wipes to the gym, and to wash their hands frequently when on the premises.
Temperature Taking – There will be a temperature gun at the reception desk. If you wish to have your temperature taken, please ask at reception. We reserve the right to take the temperature of anyone who looks unwell. This will of course be done in a discreet and unobtrusive manner.
Housekeeping – We have always maintained a high level of cleanliness in our gym, and our members have always done their bit to assist us. However, we’ve now increased this by introducing even more intense cleaning procedures coupled with a monthly deep clean by an external independent company.
We will also be making sure that:
toilets surfaces and lockers are frequently cleaned and signed off
all high-touch surfaces such as door handles, tables, stools, chairs, benches, countertops are disinfected frequently
Shared objects such as bars, ropes, weights are cleaned throughout the day
The gym is well ventilated, with open doors
There are no non-essential items such as books and magazines in the gym
Invitations – We want to reassure our most vulnerable and older members that we’re doing everything within our power to ensure their safety. So, prior to our reopening, we will be sending personal invitations to all over 65’s asking them to come and have a tour of the facilities before they return to exercise.
Swipe Cards – Membership swipe cards are a must. They allow us to accurately measure gym usage and will enable us to make the correct decisions regarding the numbers of training slots per day.
Constant Monitoring – BWell Gym owner, Spencer McCormack will be working full-time for the foreseeable future, to ensure everything we’ve promised is delivered – every day of every month. All our operational changes will be monitored, and we are very flexible and open to change. If things need to change for the better, they will change. Of course, our members feedback is vital for this to be a success, and all members will still be able to email, call, or speak to Spencer face to face to let us know their thoughts.
We know from our own experience that people who exercise regularly are more health conscious and aware of their bodies than those who don’t. Their love of a regular fitness regime also means they’re more likely to respect others, observe social distancing, and keep the facilities clean so they don’t lose it again. Many of our members feel they’re being unfairly penalised. They tell us they’d feel much safer in BWell than they do in the supermarket, or in the recently opened clothing stores for example. In both these examples we’ve all seen hordes of people ignore signage, fail to observe the measures in place, and show a total disrespect for others. That just wouldn’t happen at BWell.
You can see from all the above that lots of work has been going on behind the scenes to ensure BWell is safe to open when the time comes. We hope it won’t be long now, and as always, we thank our members for their continued support throughout this period and we look forward to seeing you all soon.
BWell – It’s not just a gym, it’s a family
How Is Coronavirus Spread?
Coronavirus spreads person-to-person via respiratory droplets when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or exhales. These droplets land on surfaces, and the disease is spread when a person touches an infected surface and then touches their eyes, nose, or mouth.
There is currently no vaccine or treatment for COVID-19. The recommended common precautions to prevent respiratory illness, include: