‘Exercise has never been more important’

Photo: File.

Most of New Zealand is closed down in the grip of the covid-19 pandemic but exercise has never been more important in the country’s history, ExerciseNZ chief executive Richard Beddie says.

"One thing Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has stressed in recent days it is still okay for Kiwis to exercise in wide open spaces or from home, Richard says.

"Gyms and fitness facilities are now closed for four weeks like everything else but ExerciseNZ is working with gyms, clubs and trainers, supporting them and advising them on how to stay healthy and get through this dire and unparalleled situation.

"People can still get out, with safe distancing, go for a walk, a bike ride, exercise at home and find activities online.

Many gyms and trainers are delivering online options which include everything from 1:1 PT sessions to small group and group exercise classes, he says.

"We are all in this together. We want to make sure that the exercise industry survives, so that post-coronavirus, providers are there to help Kiwis become more active again when facilities reopen.

Richard encourages members of gyms, users of studios and PTs to support them in whatever way they can.

“People can use their online products, seek them out, and for those that can afford to do so, keep using their PT or gym in some shape or form.

"The coronavirus has changed our lives in so many ways: the way we shop, the way we work, the way we socialise, and the way we exercise. It is more important during this pandemic than ever, especially when it comes to easing the frustrations so many of us are experiencing right now.

"We support the government’s stringent lock-down measures and Kiwis just have to adapt to a new way of life, like never before.”

Most New Zealanders have never experienced this kind of mass uncertainty which makes it so important to look after ourselves, he says.

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