Creative fitness during COVID-19

While some local gyms are cautiously beginning to open this week, many exercise enthusiasts have risen to the challenge finding alternatives that weigh in as creative stress busting both at home and out adventuring.

For the adventurers there are many idyllic places to run or cycle in QB like the Laburnum Grind or the new Memorial bike lane. Bleachers at the ballpark can work well for step ups, arm dips and modified push ups. Garages and garden shed spaces have been refitted with newly built and borrowed gym equipment.

Qualicum Beach weightlifter James Fisher’s outdoor home gym set up for COVID-19

For many serious, dedicated gym goers, stairs are rated as the best alternative guaranteeing a quick, rapid and sustained increase in heartbeat. QB has several sets of stairs down to the beach that present excellent opportunities for physical conditioning.

Dedicated stair climbers have creatively and cooperatively embraced the Covid-19 hygiene. Some wear gloves, a few wear masks. 

Maintaining safe six foot / 2 meter social distancing on stairs requires some creative strategies for “distancing camaraderie.” When two people are working out, the stairs can be divided in half with one running up and down at the top half and one doing the same at the bottom section of the stairs. When three or more people show up, routines have naturally evolved into waits and stand asides at the top and bottom. 

Sasha Martin and Katrina Vogel work out on the stairs above the beach.

Safety and courtesy are the general rule. While one can, occasionally, witness a disgruntled look from a stair user, smiling faces and friendly voices abound. Many stair users have met neighbours they didn’t know previously, and a few new friendships have sprung up, a surprise benefit in a stress-inducing time.

Local gyms reopening

With members clamoring to get back into shape at their favourite locations, gyms are opening up again. Hours may change as everyone becomes more comfortable returning to their beloved gyms.

Over at 225 Second Avenue West, BodySculptors Fitness says their re-opening is going well. “It’s quiet and we are having no problems with social distancing. Everyone is disinfecting and hand-washing. We are so thankful that our members remain committed to flattening the curve.”

Included in their COVID-19 safety protocols, customers must use only one piece of equipment at a time, and are required to sanitize everything they touch before and after use. BodySculptors is open from 5:30 am to 8:00 pm and closed on weekends for now… not forever say Deanne and Rob. Contact them on Facebook or call 250.752.5553 for more information.

Crossfit, located at 166 1st Avenue West, has also opened for personal training as of May 19th. Book your session at or call 250.594.9990. As is typical in most businesses, anyone with symptoms resembling those of COVID-19 is asked not to enter.

Bodyworks Fitness for Women opened Tuesday, May 19. “We’ve had to temporarily adjust our hours to accommodate the new normal. We will be limiting the number of people that can work out at one time to allow for social distancing measures.”

The gym, located at 141 Fourth Avenue East, is closed Saturdays and Sundays (for now). Hours of operation are 9 AM to 5 pm Monday to Friday. For more information call 250.594.0778.

Again, strict protocols are in place to protect customers and staff. Everyone must ring the bell before entering the gym premises. All non-members are required to report to the front desk.

Have fun, keep fit, stay safe!