Germany: Cologne gym reopens with new safety and hygiene restrictions

Fitness fans in Cologne got a taste of normal life on Monday when World Gym was among the first to reopen after weeks of closure amid lockdown measures stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic. Some locals took advantage of the loosened rules to start getting back in shape after weeks of confinement at home. «Now during these times, we need to make sure our costumers follow the safety measures... Еще. Undressing is completely prohibited, as well as the use of showers is not allowed,» explained gym owner Thomas Plett. «A day long stay is also forbidden, customers must disinfect their cellphones in the facilities and they will be given a disinfectant bottle which they will need to use after using each machine,» he added. Some customers were seen training in the gym studio where some machine were cordoned off. «It's a bit stressful. I've missed sport a lot and also during the lockdown I have probably not trained as regularly as before. Of course, I put on some weight and now it has to go down again,» commented Kevin Beluli Paez, a client. In Germany's federal system, each of its states will make its own decisions on how to kickstart their regions safely and emerge from lockdown. Gyms in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia were allowed to reopen, but they must provide sufficient social distancing measures, users cannot train for more than 60 minutes and showers as well as some machines must remain off limits. Germany has recorded over 172,500 confirmed cases of COVID-19 since the outbreak began and more than 7,660 deaths related to the virus thus far, according to data compiled by John Hopkins University.
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