CIMSPA responds to the Prime Minister’s announcement

Tara Dillon, CIMSPA CEO, said:

“We clearly welcome this decision, which is a reflection of the Government recognising the essential role our sector plays in the nation’s health, society and economy. This is a result of the consistent and persuasive campaigning by many organisations across the sector, the workforce and the general public.

“It’s also a result of the excellent work showing that gyms and leisure facilities are Covid-secure environments, staffed by a highly qualified, professional workforce.

“Sport and physical activity is part of the solution to Covid, not part of the problem. We believe that these facilities should never have been forced to close in the first place and we urge the Government to ensure that they are now permitted to stay open during any further lockdowns.

“Our sector is an essential service, supporting the nation’s physical and mental health, bringing communities together and saving the NHS £9.5bn every year. Throughout the pandemic, exercise has been promoted as an essential daily activity and, especially during the winter months, access to gyms and leisure facilities is vital in helping many millions of people to maintain their physical and mental health.

“We are also acutely aware of the financial impact of Covid-19 on individual workers in our sector, especially the many thousands of self-employed and freelance professionals who have not qualified for any government support. CIMSPA is actively working with partners across the UK to find ways of providing this group with some financial support.”

CIMSPA will work with the Government on the details for the sector’s reopening - including the implications for outdoor training and group exercise - and will provide updates through our website and social media channels.

CIMSPA has several digital resources available to support the sector during the coronavirus crisis, including:

  • ReTrain - a £1.5m training initiative designed to retool the sport and physical activity workforce, funded by The National Lottery through Sport England.
  • ReActive - Refresh your Covid training and return to sport and physical activity with confidence.
  • ReOpen - an online hub offering guidance and resources to support the sector in reopening facilities, when permitted.
  • Stronger Together Hub - a range of resources and advice to support businesses and individuals.
  • Stronger Together Facebook Group - an open community for all those working in the sector.


The Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity

CIMSPA’s work enhances the career opportunities and professional development of the workforce operating in sport, fitness, exercise, leisure, gyms, coaching, outdoor exercise, health and wellbeing. We achieve this through sector-wide engagement, membership, networking, events, directories and professional standards.

Incorporated by Royal Charter Charity registration number 1144545

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