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Using mystery shopping to ensure gyms are fit to reopen

Gyms and leisure centres are one of the many businesses affected by the UK pandemic lock-downs. After a brief period of reopening on July 25 last year, they are expected to reopen in England on 12 April at the earliest – but group classes are unlikely to go ahead until 17 May 2021.

A survey by Sport England found that Brits miss being able to workout at their gyms more than doing any other sporting activity, and 87 per cent of us plan to resume our memberships post-lockdown.

However, there is nervousness among some to know whether – when gyms finally do reopen for good – adequate precautions will be made to safeguard our health.

Leading gym and leisure centre providers have been working with industry association ukactive, to create a re-opening framework for fitness and leisure facilities following closure as a result of Covid-19. The framework provides specific and practical steps to support these facilities in meeting Government requirements.

By adopting the framework for reopening, it is hoped people can return to their gym and leisure centre facilities and be active in a safe environment. It provides the best practice required to give both staff and customers total confidence when visiting or working in a facility.

The ukactive framework covers social distancing and cleanliness/hygiene protocols for both customers and staff. As well as having the framework, gyms need to ensure it’s being implemented effectively and monitored regularly. Ensuring adherence in maintaining the standards and measures outlined in the framework, to protect staff and facility user, can be effectively monitored by partnering with a mystery shopping provider.

Mystery shoppers either with existing gym membership or new members can independently measure compliance by visiting each facility. Visiting facilities the mystery shopping agent’s unbiased feedback provides insight that helps organisations identify and address areas of noncompliance.

Centrebound provide mystery shopping services for leading organisations to help them understand compliance among staff regarding regulatory requirements. As well as compliance checks, mystery shopping can provide customer experience insight and sales process monitoring. Using this expertise Centrebound are best placed to help the gym and leisure centre industry help deliver a safe environment for their staff and customers and we’re all looking forward to getting back into the gym!