Visitors to South Tyneside Council leisure centres will be able to enjoy indoor exercise classes again for the first time since November as coronavirus restrictions are eased on Monday.
More than 200 instructor-led fitness and dance classes will be on offer across the council’s leisure sites – but all sessions must be booked in advance.
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Visitors are advised to arrive ready to exercise as changing and shower facilities will remain closed at this time.
They must bring their own exercise mats if they are needed in classes – but mats are available to buy.
Studios will have clearly marked training zones enabling people to remain socially distanced while they work out. Hand sanitiser and wipes will be provided.
Under the change in restrictions, sauna and steam rooms will also be reopened for pre-booked 45-minutes sessions with users issued with a wristband.
The café at Haven Point and Hebburn Central will also offer a takeaway and table service.
Swim and gym sessions, which returned when centres reopened last month, continue to run on a strict booking-only basis. Leisure users should not visit if they feel unwell.
Councillor Joan Atkinson, Deputy Leader of South Tyneside Council with responsibility for Culture and Leisure, said: “We are very much looking forward to indoor group fitness classes resuming after having been suspended for more than six months under the Government’s restrictions.
“Exercise is extremely important for maintaining good physical and mental health, especially after prolonged periods at home.
“We know this will be very welcome news to the many members who enjoy coming to our centres specially for fitness sessions, or have these classes selected as part of their ‘Duo’ membership.”
Councillor Atkinson added: “Our teams have been working incredibly hard to ensure the safety of staff and visitors in line with the Government restrictions in place while helping to keep the people of South Tyneside active.
“However, it is important to remember that our journey out of lockdown is not over.
"There are still restrictions in place to support the Government’s guidance on Hands, Face and Space.
“We would urge people to support us and help to protect themselves and others by respecting the rules.
"We would like to thank all of our leisure members for their continued support and patience during these difficult times.”
Leisure members with Duo or Multi memberships, or 30-day passes, can now reserve their spaces using the online booking system, or by calling a centre.
Get Active discount card holders and non-members can pre-book their sessions by calling centres.
Contactless payment is preferred at this time. Non-members can only book on the same day, subject to availability.
Bookings can be made by calling any of the centres – it does not have to be the one they intend to visit.
Membership fees, which have remained frozen during the lockdown period, are set to resume with direct debit payments starting again from June 1, 2021.