Tuesday, November 30

When Corona flexes its muscles

The new corona warning level in Baden-Württemberg hits mass sports hard. As of this week, people who cannot provide 2G detection have had to show a PCR test in many areas. This costs between 60 and 200 euros and is therefore significantly too expensive for regular testing.

The fitness studios in the southwest are now feeling the effects of this regulation. There is now a PCR test in addition to the sometimes high monthly tariffs per training. It goes without saying that not everyone can and wants to take part.

Frustration for some

“This is a disaster,” says the first chairman of the Baden-Württemberg bodybuilding and fitness association, Alexandros Stampoulidis. According to Stampoulidis, the wave of enthusiasm after the easing in the summer was clearly noticeable, but then quickly flattened out again.

Fitness studio operator Alexandros Stampoulidis


Stampoulidis, who among other things runs a fitness studio in Schorndorf, has seen a significant decline in customers during the pandemic. Although he was able to stay afloat with the bridging aids, these are not an option in the long term.

Unsettled customers

He does not see the possibility of introducing 2G in his fitness studios. “You have to accept that there are people who don’t want that.” Some people who have been vaccinated are still afraid of becoming infected with the virus and therefore avoid places with many people in a confined space, explains Stampoulidis in an interview with SWR Sport.

Many of the trainees have already asked him to put the contracts beyond the warning level and thus for an indefinite period on hold. “Not everyone can afford that,” explains Stampoulidis. For him, the new regulation does not offer any alternatives for people without 2G proof.

Dr. Dennis Murr, head of the strength and fitness hall at the University of Tübingen, sees it similarly and no longer expects to find people who have been tested in his studio. But thanks to the high vaccination rate among those who train, the mood in Tübingen is different.

Joy with others

Dennis Murr is by and large happy that the studio has been “normally” open again since June. The only limit is 30 people who can train in the gym at the same time. “At first it was a bit cautious, but now we’re almost back to the same level as before Corona.”

There were also significant losses during the 431 days of closure, but these were partially offset by the online offers of university sports.

Sports from home

A trend that developed over the corona period. But not everyone can practice their sport online from home, as Octavian Buhociu reports. The German master in power three-way combat and record holder in his age group in the squat (300 kilos) was lucky enough to be supported by the University of Tübingen as a competitive athlete. This gave him the opportunity to borrow equipment from the university and train in his own garage.

“Most athletes didn’t have this opportunity,” Octavian says in an interview. Especially in the last competitions, the performance gap was sometimes enormous. “You have already seen who was able to train over the Corona period and who was not.”

What’s coming in winter?

The future remains uncertain for operators as well as exercisers. If the number of infections continues to rise as last, the alert level is not far away. By then at the latest, the 2G regulation will apply in all areas in the interior. Nevertheless, you can see the current warning level in Tübingen calmly.

Both Dennis Murr and Octavian Buhociu are certain that the strength and fitness hall at the University of Tübingen shouldn’t have any problems over the winter. “Most of the people here are vaccinated. In the last few months I have probably only had three people who have come with a test,” reports Octavian, who also works as a trainer in the hall.

How long the warning level applies and whether it will still become an alert is not decided by Alexandros Stampoulidis, Dennis Murr or Octavian Buhociu, but the corona numbers. The fitness lovers only have the role of observer.


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