Along with the Borough Council’s leisure facilities, other gyms in Bedford reopened to the public yesterday (Monday) after being closed since December.
It goes without saying that many people’s physical and mental wellbeing has suffered during the latest lockdown, with dark nights and winter weather meaning outside exercise – not to mention motivation – has been harder to come by.
The Bedford Independent spoke to four local gyms to find out how they felt about welcoming their clients back through the doors.
“The excitement for the 12 April had slowly been building behind the scenes,” said Luke Levitt of The Fit Collective on Dane Street.
“It’s been a hard winter with training around different outdoor locations in Bedford, but credit to our ever loyal and dedicated clients they have stuck to it and kept us going.”
The Fit Co. has welcomed five new members to their team including four new coaches and a sports therapist.
“The atmosphere since we reopened has been incredible,” said Luke. “There’s a real buzz around the studio and big smiles on everyone’s faces.”
It was a similar story at JA Fitness Studio on Manton Lane, with clients excited to get back to their pre-lockdown routine.
“It’s been a long three-and-a-half months without having any clients in the gym,” said owner, Josh Anderson.
“We know that everyone has been looking forward to getting back and we’ve been working hard behind the scenes to make everything as safe as possible.”
With non-essential shops reopening, the Harpur Centre is coming back to life and énergie Fitness – which opened on the lower ground floor last year – is among the businesses throwing open their doors again.
“Although our physical club has been closed, we have very much been open for business throughout lockdowns via énergie Online and on our local Facebook community group,” said owner, Jake Amos.
“Lockdown has accelerated fitness trends and we’ve been able to adapt to these shifts, whether that’s training in our physical club, being looked after by our amazing team, using énergie online for top-up sessions or training outdoors.”
The team will be launching an outdoor training programme in St Mary’s Gardens shortly.
Not all gyms reopened this week. Opening at the beginning of May, SHIFT is a new gym launching at the Pilgrim Centre on Brickhill Drive.
“The last year has really highlighted the importance of our health, but so many people simply don’t know where to start or even what to do,” said Kimberley Mastrolacasa, SHIFT’s head of communications.
“We take the guesswork out of exercise and nutrition for everyone and provide personalised programmes for every individual with the sole aim of getting them stronger, fitter, healthier and in turn……happier.”
What all of these gyms have in common is a dedication to their clients and to empowering Bedfordians through fitness. They want to remove barriers and make their gyms as inclusive and inviting as possible, giving everyone the opportunity to get stronger and fitter.
“We are dedicated to ensuring people love the process of improving their health and fitness regardless of their ability or experience,” said Kimberley.
More power to them.