Cambridge USA has just released this paper on attitudes towards physical activity during the COVID 19 which is said that the levels have decreased. The Stay at home orders was in place on the 16th of March (a week before Australia went into lockdown).
The COVID has increased people’s sitting and screen time and has decreased the exercise. People have been housebound due to lockdowns. Thus this worsens their mental health.
Iowa State University interviewed 3052 adults in the USA from 50 states. Participants were grouped as active or inactive (> 8 hours a day of screen time/sitting time). 62% of them were females aged from 18-75 years and during the pandemic weekly exercises have been reduced and there is an increase in sitting time. Those who were active before the pandemic saw their levels of activity drop. This is associated with poorer mental health. Therefore these people’s mental health issues have increased. For most people, it worsened their mental health as they were isolated.
In Melbourne, we have quite a few lockdowns and in those lockdown suburbs gyms have closed. We can still run outside, but we have to keep to our own area and not go elsewhere. Thus it saw fines increase and mental health problems increase as people were not happy with the current measures. People are lonely as everyone is at home.
We know that being in a gym environment is beneficial for all, particularly during the colder weather. Gyms are safe but people are not and its people that need to be educated on hygiene protocols. If we all practice social distancing at the gym then we’d be all happier and the Government would not need to spend so much money on Mental health services.
What the government should do is allow for gyms to stay open during this and other times.