“I want a clearer signal from politicians”

If you want to work out in the gym, you need a negative coronal test, full vaccination or recovery. But from October, the tests are subject to a fee. t-online talks to club owners.

The 3G principle has been in force nationwide since Monday. Staying indoors, such as a restaurant or gym, requires either full vaccination, recovery, or a negative coronal test.

But these quick corona tests will no longer be free for citizens from October 12th. This can also make the stay more expensive for visitors to gyms that are neither vaccinated nor healthy. How does this affect fitness studies in Munich? asked t-online two sports clubs.

With four locations in Munich, the fitness center “Fitness First Germany” has a strong presence in the Bavarian capital. “Groupfit” is also one of the most popular studios in the city. However, both face the same problem: they paid quick tests against the corona virus. One reason for some members to terminate their membership.

CEO of “Fitness First Germany”: “An effect can be expected”

Johannes Maßen, CEO of “Fitness First Germany”, knows its members as active people with a “high level of health awareness.” By checking the vaccination records, he knows that the majority of his members have already been vaccinated. “But it is certainly possible that some may terminate their membership.”

With regard to the business basis, the businessman does not see any threat so far and looks positively at the sporting present and future: “We notice that our members are more interested in working on site at the club with support and motivation from i.a. coaches and the equipment of the club to train in the club. “

“After reopening in 2020, we could already enter into 60 percent more contracts than in the same month of 2019. And in 2021, that number also continued to increase – by about 160 percent more new members compared to 2019,” Maßen explains. He also knows that an effect can be expected due to stricter rules or paid tests.

About possible test offers: “We want to make training possible for everyone”

The clubs in “Fitness First Germany” should all be in central locations and are usually within walking distance of a test center, according to Maßen. Addresses of the nearest test centers are also available on the website. “We value official test evidence,” Maßen continues.

To enable all members to train in the club, “Fitness First Germany” offers its members corona self-tests – but everyone has to pay for it themselves. “In addition, we offer a capacity display on our website and in the Fitness First app, so members can always see how much capacity the club still has.”

Club owner Maßen pleads for politics

For the masses, the cessation of fitness centers means a lack of training and exercise, which in turn has a negative impact on the general health of the population – and this is in the interest of society.

A gym from the inside (archive image): (Source: Plusphoto / imago images)

To strengthen and improve immune function and reduce the risk of viral diseases, “Fitness First Germany” encourages politicians to launch long-term support measures for industries like yours.

“Groupfit” owns: “I would like a more direct signal”

“Groupfit” owner Timo Wrona also knows the importance of new and existing customers in Corona times. Here, autumn plays a special role: It’s the season for new customer deals. However, the new regulation may hamper that, according to Wrona. So much the worse if some customers were to be lost. Because: The fitness industry is “extremely” dependent on it.

“Groupfit” has already suffered significant losses due to the corona pandemic. With several redundancies in the past, the foundation of the business is now threatened. An on-site test offer, however, is unthinkable for the owner: “I think those participants who do not want to be vaccinated would rather not visit the studio and terminate their membership,” as Wrona draws from recent feedback.

About the state government: “Understanding? Yes and no”

To understand the state government’s approach, Wrona says “yes and no.” He himself is an “absolute vaccination advocate” and can only recommend it to everyone. But the regulation only affects a part of the population – and it must be used to limit the pandemic.

He sees the problem with the main drivers of the pandemic: private gatherings and the holiday season. “I would like to see a clearer and more direct signal to the people, especially from the media and from politics.”

Both Wrona and Maßen want to keep their gyms: “We will do the best we can to keep our members and continue to motivate them to work out.”

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