Home Gym Equipment Some avoiding gym with suspected Omicron cluster

Some avoiding gym with suspected Omicron cluster


The Anytime Fitness outlet in Bukit Timah – where Singapore’s first suspected Omicron cluster has been detected – had undergone a round of cleaning and was open yesterday morning, but some gym goers are staying away for fear of getting infected.

The Ministry of Health said two Covid-19 cases linked to the gym have tested preliminarily positive for the Omicron variant. The test result of a third case is still pending.

The gym said it was alerted to the cases on Monday.

In a later update, the gym said it would be closed for cleaning till 12pm on Sunday.

The three patients, who are fully vaccinated, are two men, 21 and 24, and an 18-year-old Ngee Ann Polytechnic student. All have mild symptoms and visited the gym between last Wednesday and Friday.

A spokesman for the gym said the three cases were not part of any classes and had been doing their own individual training at the gym.

Those doing strenuous exercises can be unmasked.

Only two people were in the gym at Bukit Timah Shopping Centre when The Straits Times visited at around 10am yesterday. Staff were seen wiping down gym equipment with disinfectants.

While some people whom ST spoke to will continue visiting the outlet, others will be staying away for the time being.

One of them, who wanted to be known only as Mr Tan, did not know about the suspected Omicron cluster until he spoke to ST.

The sales manager, 45, who visits the branch weekly, said he is worried and will be going to another branch for now.

Another gym user, who wanted to be known only as Mr Teo, said the last time he visited the gym was last Friday. Since then, he has been avoiding the outlet, as he does not want to get infected. He said: “The gym facilities are used by everyone, and there is a chance of the virus spreading through the contact with equipment surfaces.”

Other gym-goers were unperturbed by news of the cases.

Mr Willy Darajat said he is not too worried because he is fully vaccinated. The 30-year-old said it will not have much impact on his lifestyle as Singapore heads towards living with Covid-19.

Secondary school student Yan Jing Kai said he chose to visit the gym yesterday morning despite knowing about the cluster.

The 16-year-old also said he is not too worried, given that there have been other local cases here.

The mall was also quiet yesterday morning, with the upper floors mostly empty. Most shops and tuition centres were also closed.

Some tenants are worried about how their businesses would be impacted by the news.

A cafe owner who wanted to be known only as Mr Liu said he is concerned that the news will lead to fewer customers coming by. There were still many vacant seats at his cafe around 11.45am.

He said: “It’s a normal, knee-jerk reaction from customers when they hear news about this new variant.”

Meanwhile, some shops in the mall are taking steps to prevent the spread of the virus.

Mr Stanley Ngoi, 50, store manager of drink shop Cocolemon, said staff have been reminded to keep their masks on, and are also undergoing weekly antigen rapid tests.

Ms May Toh, who owns a juice stall on the same level as the gym, said she will try to sanitise the items in her store more often.

Mr Anthony Fok, who runs a tuition centre at the mall, said he is moving his classes online for the next two weeks as a precaution.

He said: “This situation is inevitable, considering the outbreak in other countries. There is nothing to be overly worried or concerned about, as long as we keep to the safety measures to mitigate the risks of exposure.”

  • With additional reporting by Kevin Khoe and Siti Sarah

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