Wpis dostępny jest także w języku: polski
The coronavirus pandemic has changed the way Poles engage in physical activity and how they pay for it. In a survey carried out by PMR in October 2020, 25% of respondents said that they have reduced visits to gyms, fitness centres or swimming pools since the outbreak of Covid-19, and 14% reported that they have stopped visiting such places completely.
Furthermore, 7% of the respondents in our survey have given up their Multisport passes, while 3% have had to start covering their full cost. At the same time, 54% engage in sports activities that you do not have to pay for. Things like cycling, jogging, or Nordic walking have become even more popular in 2020. Fully 67% of respondents have cycled this year, 58% have jogged, and 57% have Nordic-walked.
2020 – a tough year for gyms
Gyms, fitness centres and swimming pools were hit particularly hard by the lockdown that the Polish government imposed on 14 March to contain the spread of the coronavirus. They were among the last to reopen, only on 6 June (outdoor gyms became available again on 30 May). And when they did reopen, they had to comply with strict safety protocols and restrictions, including social distancing, face coverings, occupancy capped at 50%, up to 4 people per pool track, etc.
This regime lasted for about two months, and then things started to get worse for the sector again. On 8 August, the government introduced a system of localised restrictions for “red zone” hotspots and “yellow zone” precautionary areas, which included limits on the number of patrons in gyms and fitness centres: one person per 7 m2 in yellow zones and one person per 10 m2 in red zones. And on 17 October, the government ordered the closure of all gyms, fitness centres, swimming pools and aquaparks in the country, except for school and university classes and competitive athletes.