GET HCM
magazine
Sign up for the FREE digital edition of HCM magazine and also get the HCM ezine and breaking news email alerts.
Not right now, thanksclose this window
Les Mills
Les Mills
Les Mills
Follow Health Club Management on Twitter Like Health Club Management on Facebook Join the discussion with Health Club Management on LinkedIn Follow Health Club Management on Instagram
UNITING THE WORLD OF FITNESS
Health Club Management

Health Club Management

News

UK government forced to pull ad which claimed people who are out exercising are 'highly likely to have COVID'

The UK government has been forced to remove a controversial radio advert which claimed people who go out running or walking are "highly likely to have COVID-19".

The misleading and unsubstantiated claim sparked a number of complaints and led to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) intervening.

Following contact from the ASA, The Cabinet Office pulled the advert, which included the disputed claim.

You can listen to it by clicking here.

The advert drew criticism from both healthcare and wellness experts.

Professor Gabriel Scally, a member of the independent SAGE group, called it "appaling", while Ray Algar, the fitness industry strategist and analyst, said: "Although this was a well-intentioned attempt to remind everyone of exercise guidelines during the lockdown, it is an important lesson for anyone crafting public health messaging that a claim must always be evidence-based and defendable.

"There is, in fact, a relevant and important public health message in this radio ad which is to 'exercise, don't socialise', but that is now lost in the controversy."

Liz Terry, editor of HCM said: "Words really matter and if the government had simply said 'might have' rather than 'highly likely to have' the advert would probably not have been banned.

"The government needs to issue effective, fair and balanced messaging and not unbelievable, sensationalist propaganda.

"The challenge is that the people who are following the rules don't need these reminders and the people who breaking them won't be listening – and if they do happen to hear, they won't take any notice.

"I'd like to see a refresh of our core strategy, with a new push towards health and the reopening of regulated environments, such as gyms and spas, so people can spend more time in safe, regulated, COVID-secure places looking after their health so they can fight COVID-19, instead of more time in unregulated environments, getting fat and sedentary and spreading the virus around, while all the while, we are destroying the economy."

Sign up here to get HCM's weekly ezine and every issue of HCM magazine free on digital.
Related news

Sport Wales offers £2.5k grants to PTs, fitness instructors and coaches as part of £14m recovery package

25 Jan 2021
Fitness instructors, personal trainers, coaches and other self-employed physical activity workers in Wales are being ...

689 weak policies by successive governments blamed for failure to tackle UK's obesity crisis.

22 Jan 2021
The failure to tackle the UK's obesity crisis is down to successive governments being guilty ...

70 per cent of UK adults 'want to get healthy' in 2021 – another reason for gyms to reopen

13 Jan 2021
An England-wide survey of over 5,000 adults found that 80 per cent of people aged ...
Latest News
Mobile data and analytics provider App Annie has released its State Of Mobile 2021 report, ...
Latest News
The world's largest fitness trade fair, FIBO, has been rescheduled to November. The event will ...
Latest News
PM, Boris Johnson, has confirmed that gyms, swimming pools and leisure centres in England will ...
Latest News
The re-opening of gyms in Wales has been pushed back by the country's First Minister ...
Latest News
The physical and mental health of women in the UK has been put under unprecedented ...
Latest News
Excess body fat and obesity are likely to have contributed to more deaths in England ...
Latest News
The financial performance of health club operator SATS in the last quarter of 2020 was ...
Latest News
FIBO has announced that its Chinese event next month will be held as a hybrid ...
HCM Magazine
HCM People
The main priority is to provide safe cycling environments via bike lanes and low traffic neighbourhoods
HCM Magazine
Profile
Fitler Club is Philadelphia’s newest private lifestyle club, boasting premium health and wellness facilities, along with a hotel, workspaces and refined culinary venues. Steph Eaves talks to the club’s founder about his creation
HCM Magazine
Policy
Muir Gray has a vision for a world where exercise professionals help people live longer, better lives into old age
HCM Magazine
Sponsored
Offering red light therapy to your members can create a valuable source of secondary spend, while also supporting them with their recovery and delivering improvements to mobility, circulation and muscle soreness, as Karen Maxwell explains
HCM Magazine
Interview
COVID survival strategies, growth plans, and a belief that government is finally recognising the value of the fitness sector. The Gym Group CEO speaks to Kate Cracknell
HCM Magazine
When Geoff Whitington started to see his life unravel as a result of diabetes, his sons Anthony and Ian gave up their jobs to help him change his lifestyle. This resulted in a new lease of life for all of them. Anthony Whitington, co-creator of BBC documentary, Fixing Dad, speaks to HCM’s Kath Hudson about the journey the family has been on, their mission to inspire others to engage with their health and the launch of new initiative, Fixing Us
HCM Magazine
Interview
The duo have joined forces to launch a free virtual ‘couch to exercise’ programme called RISE. They talk to HCM about what they’ve learned from collaborating on Sport Relief and how they’re using this knowledge to deliver the new not-for-profit
HCM Magazine
HCM magazine
Tracking consumers’ sentiment in relation to lockdowns gives valuable insights into members’ priorities. Leisure-net surveyed the first two UK lockdowns and is currently working on the third. Dave Monkhouse reports on results from the lockdown 2 survey
HCM magazine
Venueserve Fitness is working with the Health Club Collection to drive its digital customer engagement
HCM magazine
Third Space members embrace new digital app, viewing 75,000 workouts in just three months
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: Forget the ‘Netflix effect’ – it’s all about the ‘iFit effect’ to boost member retention
Addiction – a word laden with negativity. But isn’t that exactly what the fitness industry wants? For members to be addicted (in a healthy way) to exercise – not just to increase profits but, most importantly, so they can live happier, healthier and longer lives.
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: The Retention People unveil 2020 Member Experience Awards winners
Member engagement software provider The Retention People (TRP) has unveiled the winners of its annual 2020 Member Experience Awards (MEA).
Company profiles
Company profile: Safe Space Lockers
Safe Space have over 25 years of experience in the UK leisure and fitness industry, ...
Company profiles
Company profile: Octane Fitness
A global innovator of high-performance fitness equipment, Octane Fitness, a Nautilus, Inc. brand, continually redefines ...
Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
Directory
Uniforms
Service Sport: Uniforms
Hydrotherapy / spa fragrances
Kemitron GmbH: Hydrotherapy / spa fragrances
Spa software
SpaBooker: Spa software
Whole body cryotherapy
Art of Cryo: Whole body cryotherapy
Lockers/interior design
Fitlockers: Lockers/interior design
Flooring
REGUPOL/Berleburger Schaumstoffwerk (BSW): Flooring
Fitness equipment
Precor: Fitness equipment
Exercise equipment
Pendex Fisio S.L.: Exercise equipment
Independent service & maintenance
Servicesport UK Limited: Independent service & maintenance
Skincare
Comfort Zone - Davines S.p.A: Skincare
Property & Tenders
Diary dates
23-26 Feb 2021
IFEMA, Madrid, Spain
Diary dates
03-04 Mar 2021
NEC, Birmingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
03-06 Jun 2021
Expo Centre & Riviera di Rimini, Italy
Diary dates
12 Jun 2021
Worldwide, Various,
Diary dates
13-14 Jun 2021
Online,
Diary dates
16-17 Jun 2021
ExCeL London, London, United Kingdom
Diary dates
18-19 Sep 2021
Locations worldwide,
Diary dates
21-24 Sep 2021
Messe Stuttgart, Germany
Diary dates
01-07 Dec 2022
tbc, Dunedin, New Zealand
Diary dates

News

UK government forced to pull ad which claimed people who are out exercising are 'highly likely to have COVID'

The UK government has been forced to remove a controversial radio advert which claimed people who go out running or walking are "highly likely to have COVID-19".

The misleading and unsubstantiated claim sparked a number of complaints and led to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) intervening.

Following contact from the ASA, The Cabinet Office pulled the advert, which included the disputed claim.

You can listen to it by clicking here.

The advert drew criticism from both healthcare and wellness experts.

Professor Gabriel Scally, a member of the independent SAGE group, called it "appaling", while Ray Algar, the fitness industry strategist and analyst, said: "Although this was a well-intentioned attempt to remind everyone of exercise guidelines during the lockdown, it is an important lesson for anyone crafting public health messaging that a claim must always be evidence-based and defendable.

"There is, in fact, a relevant and important public health message in this radio ad which is to 'exercise, don't socialise', but that is now lost in the controversy."

Liz Terry, editor of HCM said: "Words really matter and if the government had simply said 'might have' rather than 'highly likely to have' the advert would probably not have been banned.

"The government needs to issue effective, fair and balanced messaging and not unbelievable, sensationalist propaganda.

"The challenge is that the people who are following the rules don't need these reminders and the people who breaking them won't be listening – and if they do happen to hear, they won't take any notice.

"I'd like to see a refresh of our core strategy, with a new push towards health and the reopening of regulated environments, such as gyms and spas, so people can spend more time in safe, regulated, COVID-secure places looking after their health so they can fight COVID-19, instead of more time in unregulated environments, getting fat and sedentary and spreading the virus around, while all the while, we are destroying the economy."

Sign up here to get HCM's weekly ezine and every issue of HCM magazine free on digital.
Related news

Sport Wales offers £2.5k grants to PTs, fitness instructors and coaches as part of £14m recovery package

25 Jan 2021
Fitness instructors, personal trainers, coaches and other self-employed physical activity workers in Wales are being ...

689 weak policies by successive governments blamed for failure to tackle UK's obesity crisis.

22 Jan 2021
The failure to tackle the UK's obesity crisis is down to successive governments being guilty ...

70 per cent of UK adults 'want to get healthy' in 2021 – another reason for gyms to reopen

13 Jan 2021
An England-wide survey of over 5,000 adults found that 80 per cent of people aged ...

News

Mobile data and analytics provider App Annie has released its State Of Mobile 2021 report,
The world's largest fitness trade fair, FIBO, has been rescheduled to November. The event will
PM, Boris Johnson, has confirmed that gyms, swimming pools and leisure centres in England will
The re-opening of gyms in Wales has been pushed back by the country's First Minister
The physical and mental health of women in the UK has been put under unprecedented
Excess body fat and obesity are likely to have contributed to more deaths in England
fibodo Limited
fibodo Limited
The world has had to get used to social distancing in 2020 and any business
The financial performance of health club operator SATS in the last quarter of 2020 was
FIBO has announced that its Chinese event next month will be held as a hybrid
Placing gyms and leisure centres at the front of the queue for reopening would be
Data published today (17 February) shows that for every 100,000 visits to UK gyms and
People aged 40 living with Type 2 diabetes face a "disproportionately increased risk of dying
Barbara den Bak, Tom Moos, and Clare Stobart have been announced as speakers for ukactive's
Safe Space Lockers
Safe Space Lockers
Core Health & Fitness is proud to have signed an exclusive supplier agreement for the
PureGym expects lockdowns to last "until at least 31 March" – and that it will
Construction work has been completed on the £29m Sports Park project in Colchester. The new
Spanish capital Madrid has been hailed as an example of a city which understands the
ukactive has published six 'policy calls', which it says are crucial in order to help
An area north of Sheffield City Centre in the UK is to be designed as
Europe’s largest fitness chain, Basic-Fit, has secured a €150m bridge facility, which it says will
Miha Bodytec GmbH
Miha Bodytec GmbH
Maintaining a consistent member experience across a growing health and fitness brand can prove challenging.
The Cabinet Office has chosen leisure operator GLL as the "face" of England's COVID-secure physical
Virgin Active investors are understood to be preparing a £60m+ funding injection into the fitness
MyZone Group Ltd
MyZone Group Ltd
1 - 20 of 11,792
HCM Magazine
HCM People
The main priority is to provide safe cycling environments via bike lanes and low traffic neighbourhoods
HCM Magazine
Profile
Fitler Club is Philadelphia’s newest private lifestyle club, boasting premium health and wellness facilities, along with a hotel, workspaces and refined culinary venues. Steph Eaves talks to the club’s founder about his creation
HCM Magazine
Policy
Muir Gray has a vision for a world where exercise professionals help people live longer, better lives into old age
HCM Magazine
Sponsored
Offering red light therapy to your members can create a valuable source of secondary spend, while also supporting them with their recovery and delivering improvements to mobility, circulation and muscle soreness, as Karen Maxwell explains
HCM Magazine
Interview
COVID survival strategies, growth plans, and a belief that government is finally recognising the value of the fitness sector. The Gym Group CEO speaks to Kate Cracknell
HCM Magazine
When Geoff Whitington started to see his life unravel as a result of diabetes, his sons Anthony and Ian gave up their jobs to help him change his lifestyle. This resulted in a new lease of life for all of them. Anthony Whitington, co-creator of BBC documentary, Fixing Dad, speaks to HCM’s Kath Hudson about the journey the family has been on, their mission to inspire others to engage with their health and the launch of new initiative, Fixing Us
HCM Magazine
Interview
The duo have joined forces to launch a free virtual ‘couch to exercise’ programme called RISE. They talk to HCM about what they’ve learned from collaborating on Sport Relief and how they’re using this knowledge to deliver the new not-for-profit
HCM Magazine
HCM magazine
Tracking consumers’ sentiment in relation to lockdowns gives valuable insights into members’ priorities. Leisure-net surveyed the first two UK lockdowns and is currently working on the third. Dave Monkhouse reports on results from the lockdown 2 survey
HCM magazine
Venueserve Fitness is working with the Health Club Collection to drive its digital customer engagement
HCM magazine
Third Space members embrace new digital app, viewing 75,000 workouts in just three months
HCM magazine
HCM People

Kate Little / Paula Harris

Kate Little & Paula Harris; regional retail managers, Everyone Active
All products have been priced competitively, using Amazon as a benchmark, to ensure the shop can thrive in a competitive market
HCM magazine
Resistance training is just as beneficial for women over the age of 50 as it is for men, according to a new study from the University of New South Wales
HCM magazine
Most of the world is dealing with some form of disruption to daily life, work life and finances, as well as navigating an uncertain world. Even those who enjoy robust mental health are finding themselves suffering from stress, anxiety, low mood and insomnia. What can the health and fitness industry do to help? Kath Hudson reports
HCM magazine
There’s never been a more important time for us all to be focused on lobbying, as the industry fights for its work and potential to be recognised and supported
HCM magazine
Stephen Tharrett, co-founder, ClubIntel
HCM magazine
HCM People

Scott O’Shea

Founder, Station Mill
Coming from a personal training background, my experience has taught me that people hire the trainer before the training
HCM magazine
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: Forget the ‘Netflix effect’ – it’s all about the ‘iFit effect’ to boost member retention
Addiction – a word laden with negativity. But isn’t that exactly what the fitness industry wants? For members to be addicted (in a healthy way) to exercise – not just to increase profits but, most importantly, so they can live happier, healthier and longer lives.
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: The Retention People unveil 2020 Member Experience Awards winners
Member engagement software provider The Retention People (TRP) has unveiled the winners of its annual 2020 Member Experience Awards (MEA).
Company profiles
Company profile: Safe Space Lockers
Safe Space have over 25 years of experience in the UK leisure and fitness industry, ...
Company profiles
Company profile: Octane Fitness
A global innovator of high-performance fitness equipment, Octane Fitness, a Nautilus, Inc. brand, continually redefines ...
Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
Directory
Uniforms
Service Sport: Uniforms
Hydrotherapy / spa fragrances
Kemitron GmbH: Hydrotherapy / spa fragrances
Spa software
SpaBooker: Spa software
Whole body cryotherapy
Art of Cryo: Whole body cryotherapy
Lockers/interior design
Fitlockers: Lockers/interior design
Flooring
REGUPOL/Berleburger Schaumstoffwerk (BSW): Flooring
Fitness equipment
Precor: Fitness equipment
Exercise equipment
Pendex Fisio S.L.: Exercise equipment
Independent service & maintenance
Servicesport UK Limited: Independent service & maintenance
Skincare
Comfort Zone - Davines S.p.A: Skincare
Property & Tenders
Diary dates
23-26 Feb 2021
IFEMA, Madrid, Spain
Diary dates
03-04 Mar 2021
NEC, Birmingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
03-06 Jun 2021
Expo Centre & Riviera di Rimini, Italy
Diary dates
12 Jun 2021
Worldwide, Various,
Diary dates
13-14 Jun 2021
Online,
Diary dates
16-17 Jun 2021
ExCeL London, London, United Kingdom
Diary dates
18-19 Sep 2021
Locations worldwide,
Diary dates
21-24 Sep 2021
Messe Stuttgart, Germany
Diary dates
01-07 Dec 2022
tbc, Dunedin, New Zealand
Diary dates
Search news, features & products:
Find a supplier:
Les Mills
Les Mills