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    Gov’t decision to gradually reopen sectors draws mixed reactions

    May 30, 2021

    AMMAN — The announcement of the gradual reopening of closed sectors drew mixed reactions from sector operators and gym-goers.

    During a press briefing at the Prime Ministry on Wednesday, Minister of State for Media Affairs Sakher Dudin said that the first phase of the gradual reopening starts on June 1, adding that all procedures are subject to change depending on the epidemiological situation in the Kingdom.

    Salma Ali, who is a Jordanian gym manager, told The Jordan Times over the phone on Thursday that sector operators are feeling overwhelmed as they do not have much time to prepare their facilities.

    “Although most stakeholders welcomed the government’s decision regarding the gradual reopening of sectors, they are discontent with the government’s required procedures and conditions,” Ali added.

    The requirement that all gym employees and members should have taken the first shot of the COVID-19 vaccine 21 days before returning to gyms, excluding those under 18 years old and people who should not get vaccinated following Health Ministry’s instructions, “has added a new burden for fitness facilities’ operators”, Ali said.

    Meanwhile, Dalin Khatatneh, a personal trainer, told The Jordan Times that she is excited to go back to work after being at home for almost three months.

    “I got the vaccine and I am ready,” Khatatneh said, noting that “relaxing curbs on the fitness industry would help in bringing a sense of normalcy, but setting the maximum operational capacity at 50 per cent is just too much”.

    “I have been eagerly waiting for the government’s decision concerning the reopening of the Kingdom’s fitness centres,” said Seren Alami, a 19-year-old member at a gym.

    Alami added that summer has already started and being at the gym for two to three hours has been her summer routine for years now, noting that “the fitness industry offers young girls a supportive community that is strongly needed”.


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