The Tamil Nadu government on Thursday evening issued a new set of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for gyms reopening on August 10, after they had been ordered to be shut down as all other businesses in the state due to the lockdown imposed nationwide in order to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus. As per the new guidelines, the government has allowed gyms located in non-containment areas to reopen from Monday, with air conditions in the facilities to be set at 24°-30° temperature and the relative humidity in the range of 40-70%. 

Among the other notable protocols are pregnant women and children below the age of 15 not being permitted to use the facilities. Likewise, people older than 50, as well as persons with co-morbidities, too have been restricted from entering the premises. The number of people in the gym and members, trainers and other staff must be limited and they are to maintain a distance of minimum 6 feet between each other. Similarly, the equipment at the facilities should also be placed 6ft apart. 

All members visiting the gym are advised to wear a face shield during their workout, while managers are to plan activities of keeping a floor area of 4sqm per member. Sanitiser needs to be provided and gym members are to wash their hands frequently, while personal protection gear are to be made available, which includes face masks, disinfectant wipes. Pulse oximeters too must be made available at the facilities and the premises should display COVID-19 awareness messages. Common exercise mats are to be avoided and members should bring their own mats and take them back.

Equipment needs to be wiped before and after use with disinfectant wipes and disposable paper towels. A 15-30 minute gap between each group fitness class needs to be maintained by the administration in order to avoid any overlap of visitors arriving and leaving the facility. Instructions have also been passed out to the gyms to offer online fitness classes wherever possible. Aarogya Setu app installation is advised. 

In the event of a person suspected to be found ill in the facility, he/she must be put under isolation in a room or area. The nearest medical facility must be informed and a face mask should be worn until a doctor has conducted a checkup. A risk assessment will be done post which the health authority will alert on disinfection procedure and contact tracing, if necessary. In case the person is found to be positive, steps to disinfect the premises needs to be taken up. 

Below is the full list of new guidelines for the gyms reopening in Tamil Nadu: