District Mail

Gym in­struc­tors and own­ers protest

- Yaseen Gaf­far

STRAND – Em­ploy­ees of Tru­self Fit­ness Gym on Beach Road voiced their sol­i­dar­ity with the na­tion­wide protest yes­ter­day (Wed­nes­day 5 Au­gust) against gym clo­sures as one of the lock­down re­stric­tions yet to be lifted.

Own­ers Eleanor and Nathanael Pekeur to­gether with their staff ex­pressed not only con­cern for their fu­ture and that of their em­ploy­ees, but also the well-be­ing and health of all their clients.

“We have over 1 000 mem­bers, none of whom have been able to prop­erly ex­er­cise for the past five months, and at a time when look­ing af­ter one’s self has be­come so vi­tal. We are here to say that gyms are es­sen­tial,” said Eleanor.

Tru­self Fit­ness has been op­er­at­ing since 2010 and, de­spite chal­lenges in the past, this is the most test­ing, she fur­ther ad­mit­ted.

“Our in­ten­tion was to stand on bal­conies and on the side­walk with our plac­ards to cre­ate aware­ness around this is­sue as is be­ing done na­tion­wide, but at the last minute we were told by the po­lice that gath­er­ings were flout­ing lock­down reg­u­la­tions and we were de­nied per­mis­sion,” she ex­plained, stress­ing that the fit­ness in­dus­try was ready to com­ply with the law, ad­here to all reg­u­la­tions and im­ple­ment strict poli­cies to keep peo­ple safe.

The peace­ful demon­stra­tions took place coun­try­wide from 12:00 to 14:00 yes­ter­day and was headed by FitSA, the as­so­ci­a­tion of health and fit­ness clubs in the coun­try.

The in­dus­try fol­lows suit of na­tional protests by the res­tau­rant and tourism in­dus­tries. A state­ment re­leased by FitSA pub­lic re­la­tions of­fi­cer, Mag­daleen Botes, said the in­dus­try em­ploys around 29 000 peo­ple.

“Jobs of em­ploy­ees across the in­dus­try are un­der enor­mous threat and tak­ing a lot of strain. The fit­ness in­dus­try is com­pletely left be­hind, with no sup­port from gov­ern­ment,” the state­ment read.

 ?? Photo: Yaseen Gaf­far ?? Own­ers and staff of Tru­self Fit­ness Gymn stand in sol­i­dar­ity with the na­tion­wide protest by FitSA, de­mand­ing that gym’s be al­lowed to re-open.
Photo: Yaseen Gaf­far Own­ers and staff of Tru­self Fit­ness Gymn stand in sol­i­dar­ity with the na­tion­wide protest by FitSA, de­mand­ing that gym’s be al­lowed to re-open.

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