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Reopening Gyms in India: How Alpha Omega Combat Sports in Kolkata is reopening

LockerRoom Team
30 August 2020

The Gyms across India have reopened following the COVID-19 lockdown. The lockdown had been a huge blow for the Indian fitness industry in general but now that the restrictions are eased, it is time to adapt and get back to business.

In this series ‘Reopening of Gyms in India’, we hope to feature multiple gyms across the nation and their plans in the post-COVID time period. In this sixth chapter, we talk to Alpha Omega Combat Sports Head Coach and athlete Shiba Banerjee who opens up about the reopening process.

Below is what he had to say:

The digital shift and the support he received

Immediately after the lockdown, we shifted our entire program online. We had a great response and we retained most of our students in our online classes. The initial reaction was not that bad as the lockdown was supposed to be lifted up after 15 days, but when it got extended over and over again, we could see a lot of restlessness and frustration in our students. As for most of our students, our classes are something they indulge in after a hard day of work to get rid of their stress.

Nonetheless, we have a bunch of most loyal and supportive students any academy can ever have, during this hard time they supported us in every way possible and for which I am ever thankful to them.

The New safety measures in place

We have made hand and feet sanitization mandatory prior to entry and the mats and gears are getting sanitized after every class. We have also limited the number of students per batch to 6.

The reaction to the reopening

In the beginning, we received a lot of mixed reactions, there was a lot of excitement along with fear. Their main concern was the safety measures and the size of the batch. When they saw how we were able to take care of both the issues we started retaining our students almost immediately. We have been lucky enough to get new admissions as well.

I believe the guidelines are just fine but we have to be really cautious as the sport we train or provide training for is a contact sport. There is no harm in being a bit extra careful I believe. I absolutely do not believe that this is the new normal, there have been pandemics way worse than this, mankind as a whole survived it and overcame it and we will do it again.

Training Combat Sports

I personally believe everything is a challenge, everything we do on a daily basis provides us with some form of risk, and we cannot shut ourselves down and stop living. In my opinion, we have to go on with our regular life with a very careful approach. The sport we so dearly love, train and teach is both our passion and profession, we have to keep training in order to compete and teach to practically put food in our table. My plan is simple: to sanitize or shower before the class then shower or sanitize after the class, avoid getting in contact with too many people and wash gi, rash guards and towels and sanitize gloves, guards, and other training gears regularly.

Tune in for the next chapter where we feature another gym that is reopening.


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