Unlock 2.0 is the government’s decision to slowly resume essential services and slowly transition into normal life without the health risks that have swept the country amidst the pandemic. This unlock has seen decreased restrictions for shop owners, restaurants and other services. Schools and educational institutions remain closed until further notice. Gyms, swimming pools and other health and sports facilities, however, show no signs of opening again soon.
The government launched the Fit India movement in order to get rid of the sedentary lifestyle that has been the cause of many lifestyle disorders affecting working class as well as other sectors of society. This saw an increase in gym memberships and people choosing the decision to lead healthier lifestyles by joining health clubs, swimming pools saw an increase in members and fitness sector overall saw an increase. However, the lockdown saw gyms, swimming pools and health centres closed to avoid the spread of the coronavirus.
One of the many first things to unlock was liquor stores which were negatively viewed by the fitness community. Opening of liquor shops could have possibly led to health issues among alcoholics and unnecessary expenditure when essential commodities aren’t properly available. Though the government had concessions in place for many businesses, the fitness sector was neglected as many gyms had to shut down and are facing issues due to rents piling up and many more issues.
Fitness and health is an essential part of all people irrespective of age, gender or occupation as it improves the quality of health which is very essential during this trying time. Exercising will improve immunity for which the operation of gyms and swimming pools is essential.
Sports has taken a backseat during this lockdown with multiple stadiums shut, athletes unable to use training facilities without restrictions and cancellation of India’s beloved sports series, the IPL. Many players have taken to social media to host online live chats and interviews to make the best of this lockdown. A moment to connect with the fans and their family is one of the few things appreciated by sportspersons during this lockdown.
Sports and health facilities are likely to be unlocked in the phase when everything is up and running. Though many countries have made adjustments like time slot system, social distancing and other safety measures, it will be a long time before people can engage in their favourite outdoor activities and watch their sportsperson on TV in India. This is estimated to happen between the end of August or early September when services will resume normally. Until then, fans of sports will have to make do and athletes will have to improvise and train.
Also read: When will gyms be open in India?